May Day event helps youth take flight in Woodlake

Local pilots offer free flights to local youth ages 8 to 17 at May 1 event at the Woodlake Airport

WOODLAKE — Many people go their whole life without flying in an airplane. That’s what a group of volunteer pilots are hoping to avoid in Woodlake this weekend.

Local youth ages 8 to 17 will have a chance to take to the skies on May 1, as Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 1292 hosts a Young Eagles Flight Rally at Woodlake Airport.

The rally is part of the EAA Young Eagles Program, created to introduce aviation to young people. EAA members also fly Young Eagles on an individual basis. Each pilot volunteers their time and aircraft so the flights can be provided free of charge for interested young people. Since the program was launched in 1992, Volunteer EAA pilots have flown more than 2 million young people who reside in more than 90 countries.

“Free airplane rides are just part of the Flight Rally,” said Chris Crumly, Young Eagles Coordinator for the event. “We hope to build one-to-one relationships between pilots and young people, giving a new generation a chance to learn more about the possibilities that exist in the world of aviation.”

Pilots at the event will also introduce participants to their airplanes, allowing young people to discover how airplanes work, and how pilots ensure safety is the prime concern before every flight.

Following the flight, each young person, will receive a certificate making them an official Young Eagle. Their name will then be entered into the “World’s Largest Logbook,” which is on permanent display at the EAA Air Adventure Museum in Oshkosh, Wis. The Logbook is also accessible on the Internet at www.youngeagles.org.

In addition to the Certificate the new Young Eagle will be given a Logbook with an access code for a complete free online Flight Training course offered by Sporty’s.

Those attending the May 1 event are asked to come to the EAA clubhouse next to the restaurant at the Woodlake Airport starting at 8 a.m. to register for their flight. Flights will begin shortly after 8 a.m., with registration closing at 1:30 p.m. COVID-19 precautions will be observed, with all participants needing to wear faces masks and follow proper social distancing guidelines.

Additional information about EAA and the EAA Young Eagles program is available on the Internet. Access to EAA’s home page is available at www.eaa.org. The Young Eagles web page is www.youngeagles.org. For more information contact Lucky Oldfield at 559-804-0946 Chris Crumly at 559-805-9221.

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