PRESCOTT, ARIZ. — Area young people ages 8-17 had a chance to take to the skies on Saturday, March 30, as Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 658 hosted a Young Eagles Flight Rally at Legend Aviation, located at the Prescott Municipal Airport. With the help of seven pilots and eleven ground volunteers, 34 Young Eagles took their first flight under fair skies and calm winds.
The rally is part of the National EAA Young Eagles Program, created to interest young people in aviation. Since the program was launched in 1992, volunteer EAA pilots have flown more than 1.7 million young people who reside in more than 90 countries. Each pilot volunteers their time and aircraft so the flights can be provided free of charge for interested young people.
“Free airplane rides are just part of the Flight Rally,” said Chris Felton, EAA Young Eagles Coordinator. “We hope to build one-on-one connections between pilots and young people, giving a new generation a chance to learn more about the possibilities that exist in the world of aviation.”
After a pre-flight demonstration, pilots at the event explained more about their airplanes, allowing young people to discover how airplanes work and how pilots ensure safety is the prime concern before every flight. After a short introductory airplane ride, each Young Eagle receives a logbook to record their flight experience. Young Eagles also have access to a free EAA student membership; a free online pilot training course; the opportunity to earn a first flight lesson, and access to flight training scholarships and awards. Each young person receives a certificate making them an official Young Eagle. Their name is then entered into the “World’s Largest Logbook,” which is on permanent display at the EAA AirVenture Museum in Oshkosh, WI. The Logbook is also accessible online at [www.youngeagles.org].
In addition to the Certificate, the new Young Eagle is given a Logbook with an access code for a complete free online Flight Training course offered by Sporty’s Pilot Shop.
“Volunteers make this event happen!” said Felton. Along with EAA pilots and volunteers, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) generously sponsored an aircraft and two instructor pilots for this event. Many students from ERAU and ERAU’s Women in Aviation Ambassador Program came out to volunteer their time to help get these kids in the air. “Embry-Riddle is so proud to be a part of Young Eagles. We have been in the aviation business since 1926 and it is our goal to help young people realize their dreams of flight,” said Dr. Frank Ayers, Chancellor of Embry-Riddle’s Prescott campus and Young Eagles pilot.
This event would not be possible without the support of Legend Aviation for allowing us to use their facilities, the City of Prescott and airport officials for working with EAA to put on this event, and the FAA air traffic controllers in Prescott Tower who always provide excellent service to our pilots flying Young Eagles.
Additional information about EAA and the EAA Young Eagles program is available online at [www.eaa.org], or you can go directly to the Young Eagles web page at [www.youngeagles.org].
For more information contact:
Chris Felton, EAA YE Coordinator