AMA District VI News March 2023

This came from Don Gallian in Manteno, Illinois:

Several years ago, a few members of the Kankakee Valley Model Flyers club decided to go flying on the day after Thanksgiving. We named the occasion Black Fly Day! One of the original group members has since joined the big flying club in the sky, but the rest of us have been able to fly on that day since, and more members have joined us throughout the years! We plan to keep up the Black Fly Day tradition for as long as we can.

I mentioned Black Fly Day to the other local clubs, and at least one of them has taken up the tradition as well! Black Fly Day 2022 was a great day for flying. The temperatures were in the 40s, with wind less than 10 mph! Eight people attended and five of us flew. Two flew the Arrows Hobby Bigfoot, two flew helicopters, and I flew my Durafly Tundra. One even drove an RC Redcat Racing Kaiju car! We ended the day with lunch at a local restaurant.

Steve O’Rourke, from Columbia, Illinois, reported that the Columbia R/C Flying Club hosted a successful swap meet on November 6, 2022, at Turner Hall in downtown Columbia. Most of our club members can’t remember how long we’ve been having a swap and shop, but it has been many, many years. I’m pretty sure we can claim to be one of the largest RC swap meets in the St. Louis area.

Our experience has always helped us to provide a benefit to both our club and the local RC community. We’ve been concerned about diminishing attendance at our events in the last few years, but this one has our confidence renewed. There is still a strong market and demand for this type of event.

We had great attendance, a great variety of airplanes, and RC equipment both old and new and at good prices. We sold all of our available tables (more than 70) to commercial vendors and private sellers. That made for very good shopping for someone looking to buy. We served homemade chili and refreshments and look forward to having our next swap meet this spring. We now host two of them a year.

Well, we made it through winter and here we are in good old windy March. The temperature is rising, but the wind is fairly high, keeping many of us grounded. Please take some time to inspect your aircraft to ensure that it is in top condition for the new flying season.

As I mentioned last month, there are a lot of flying clubs in District VI. I visit as many as my schedule allows, but there is no way I will ever be able to visit every club. If you would like me to attend one of your club’s events, please send me an email with details and I will add it to my calendar. If my schedule allows, I might pop in.

Remember to take time to introduce someone new to model aviation. This time of year, even sharing simulator time would work. We need to get youth excited about model aviation because they are the future of our hobby!

Gary Himes
Vice President District VI

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