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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Taking a holiday hiatus

Hello all!

The Virginia Aviation News blog will be taking a short holiday hiatus until Jan 3rd. On behalf of myself and the entire Dept of Aviation staff, we wish you the happiest of holidays and a wonderful new year! We'll be back in 2011 with more stories and photos from the Virginia Aviation world!

If you have any story ideas for 2011, please send them to

Monday, December 13, 2010

Chesterfield Toy Airlift a success!

The Virginia Chapter of the Ninety-Nines received 378 toys, $455 in gift cards for McGuire Veterans' Hospital and made $215 in food sales which will also benefit the hospital. Thanks for everyone who participated in the event on Saturday! Enjoy the photos below!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

DOAV at the Governor's Transportation Conference

Hello all!

The DOAV show crew has hit the road again! We're exhibiting at the Governor's Transportation Conference in Roanoke tonight through Friday morning. If you're attending, we'd love for you to stop by the booth and say hello! We're in the Crystal Ballroom, booth #702. You can't miss us!

Should be a lot of great discussions at the conference! We'll keep you posted on any breaking aviation news!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Don't forget- Christmas Toy Airlift Sautrday in Chesterfield

Did any of you catch the lovely Betty Vinson of the VA Chapter of the 99's on Channel 8's 9 a.m. newscast? She did an excellent job promoting the Christimas Toy Airlift, which will take place on Saturday at Chesterfield County Airport from 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

Toys will be collected at airports around the state until Saturday when volunteer pilots from each location will fly them into Chesterfield County Airport. New and unwrapped underwear, socks, baseball caps, fleece lap blankets, shower shoes and toiletries will also be collected. Also needed are gift cards from Ben Franklin, Target and Wal-Mart for snacks and supplies for McGuire’s Veterans’ Hospital and gift cards from Sheetz and Wawa for gasoline for veterans’ outings.

Santa will fly into Chesterfield Airport at 10 a.m. and greet children inside the terminal until 2 p.m. There will also be a static display of warbirds and live Christmas music throughout the day.

A rain date is scheduled for Dec. 12. Hot lunches will be available for purchase.

If unable to attend, donations can be dropped off at the following airports: Dinwiddie, Chesterfield, New Kent and Hanover; and the following businesses: Batters Choice, 3105 S. Crater Rd. in Petersburg, and The Hopewell News in Hopewell.

For any questions, contact Betty Vinson, event coordinator, at 804-720-1132 or visit

The Ninety-Nines, Inc. is an international non-profit organization of women pilots with more than 5,500 members worldwide.

Roanoke Gains Two Flights as Lynchburg Loses Two

Roanoke Regional Airport will soon gain two additional daily Delta Airlines flights to Atlanta while Lynchburg Regional Airport will lose its two daily flights to Atlanta as of January 4th.

The tradeoff is that Delta will cancel one of its two daily flights from Roanoke to Detroit at the same time. In addition, according to Roanoke Regional Airport spokesperson, Sherry Wallace, Delta usually adds one flight to Atlanta each spring, anyway.

A Delta spokesperson was quoted in the Lynhcburg News & Advance as saying that “While we did make the decision to suspend service in Lynchburg, because of poor performance of that route, we’ve seen an overall increase in travel demand in the region.”

Friday, December 3, 2010

Virginia Aviation Board allocates funds to airports

The Virginia Aviation Board met on Nov. 18 in Richmond to review funding recommendations for Commonwealth Airport Fund projects. Funds allocated included $59,263 for air carrier/reliever airports and $265,170.88 for general aviation airports.
Projects include $175,092 for sinkhole repairs at Virginia Highlands and $36,649 for a replacement runway at Hampton Roads Executive (Construction).

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

AIAA program manager wins NCASE award

The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) congratulates Lisa W. Bacon, AIAA program manager for STEM and K–12 outreach, on her selection to be a recipient of the 2010 Dr. Mervin K. Strickler Jr. Aerospace Education Award, presented by the National Coalition for Aviation and Space Education (NCASE). She  received the award during the National Aeronautics Association’s fall awards banquet at the Crystal Gateway Marriott, Arlington.

Bacon is being recognized for her significant contributions to aerospace education, which have positively impacted thousands of students and teachers in the United States and around the world. As AIAA’s program manager for STEM and K–12 outreach, Bacon has inspired many thousands of students to pursue further education in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, especially through AIAA’s annual “Education Alley” program and her management of the World Space Congress’ K–12 education events. Her guidance has also allowed thousands of teachers to benefit from AIAA’s innovative classroom educator programs, furthering their ability to inspire the next generation of aerospace engineers and scientists.

AIAA President Dr. Mark J. Lewis stated: “The National Coalition for Aviation and Space Education has recognized what we at AIAA already knew – that Lisa Bacon is a national asset when it comes to engineering education! I can think of no one more deserving of the Strickler Award; all of our members and staff who have had the privilege of working with Lisa know that she exudes a contagious enthusiasm and a tireless passion for encouraging the next generation of engineers. We are very proud of Lisa's accomplishments and congratulate her on this outstanding and extraordinarily well-deserved honor.”

NCASE established the award in honor of Dr. Mervin K. Strickler Jr., former special assistant for aviation education in the Office of General Aviation Affairs of the Federal Aviation Administration, who is considered the “father” of aerospace education, to commemorates Dr. Strickler’s efforts to promote aerospace education over the last 50 years. Recipients are individuals or organizations that share Dr. Strickler’s personal commitment and lifelong contributions to aerospace education.

The National Coalition for Aviation and Space Education represents government, industry, and labor united to promote aviation education activities and resources, increase public understanding of aviation, and support educational initiatives at the local, state, and national levels. For more information visit

AIAA is the world’s largest technical society dedicated to the global aerospace profession. With more than 35,000 individual members worldwide, and 90 corporate members, AIAA brings together industry, academia, and government to advance engineering and science in aviation, space, and defense. For more information, visit

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Annual Tangier Holly Run scheduled for Dec. 4

The annual event to bring holly (and Santa Claus) to Tangier Island will stage out of Bay Bridge Airport (W29) in Maryland on Dec. 4.

Pilots have been participating in the Holly Run since 1968 when Edward H. Nabb, based at Cambridge-Dorchester Airport, delivered the first few bags of holly to two churches, Swain Memorial Methodist and New Testament, on the island for them to decorate for Christmas.

About 30-40 aircraft deliver holly to the island each year. Edward Nabb Jr. continued the tradition after his father died seven years ago, and the event has taken place every year except 2008 when the airport was being resurfaced.

Nabb’s cousin, Carlton Nabb, has cut the holly each year for nearly four decades and bagged it for the islanders to use to decorate their houses, yards, and golf carts. Even though Carlton won’t fly to the island as part of the holly run, he helps bring the holly to Cambridge-Dorchester Airport to be loaded on aircraft because he knows how important the holly is to the islanders.

There will be a safety briefing at the airport before the group heads south with Santa and his AOPA sponsored sleigh/Cessna Caravan. Chesapeake Sport Pilot is sponsoring the event this year. Pilots are asked to sign up at our web page and are asked to share empty seats via the ride board at that site. For more information contact

Monday, November 15, 2010

Tips to make traveling easier this Thanksgiving

The folks at Roanoke Regional sent these Thanksgiving traveling tips out this morning, but they are applicable to all airports:

Thanksgiving marks the busiest time of the year at the Roanoke Regional Airport. Passenger traffic is expected to be the greatest on Friday, Nov. 19 (the day most students leave to go home for the holiday) and on Monday, Nov. 29 (when most people come back home from holiday travel). In fact, most flights this week are oversold. Keeping that in mind, the Roanoke Regional Airport Commission offers the following travel tips to its passengers on how to get from the start of your trip to your destination, with as little inconvenience as possible.

Most important, GIVE YOURSELF EXTRA TIME AND PLEASE BE PATIENT. Every procedure being undertaken is in an effort to ensure that your travel is safe, secure, and efficient. Please check web
sites for the airports you will be using during your trip to confirm procedures in place. It is recommended that you get to the airport two hours in advance of your flight’s departure time. Some flights are over booked (particularly on November 19 and 20) so arriving early to the airport will improve your chances of getting on your way on time.

You will be required to have a valid government issued ID when you check-in for your flight. The name on your boarding pass must match the name on your government issued identification.Please be prepared to show ID as well as boarding cards at each stage of the boarding process. Take the time to check the airport’s or airline’s web sites to determine if any flight delays are taking place. Proceed to screening as soon as possible. Leave lots of time for the security screening process as lines are expected to be longer this year. You don’t want to get left behind!

If you have a medical condition that requires you to carry a needle and/or syringe on your person or in your carry-on baggage you must also have the medication that requires such injection on your person. The medication must be packaged with a pharmaceutical label or professionally printed label identifying the medication. Passengers requiring special arrangements or assistance should make such arrangements with their airline ahead of time.

Control all carry-on bags. Never leave anything unattended as it could be subjected to tampering or confiscated.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Turkish Airlines celebrates launch of third U.S. gateway at Dulles International

On Nov. 6, Turkish Airlines continued its expansion in the U.S. with the launch of its inaugural flight from Washington D.C., the airline’s third U.S. gateway, to Istanbul.

The inaugural flight featured  a Boeing 777-300ER (brand new aircraft) that departed Istanbul and arrived at Dulles 16:10:01 hours. The aircraft then proceeded to the international area to gate Bravo 37 where the Airport Authorities fire trucks formed a welcoming arch of water. (Photos by William B. Folsom Photography, Inc.)

The event included remarks by Dr. Temel Kotil, CEO and member of the Board, Turkish Airlines; His Excellency Namik Tan, The Turkish Ambassador to the United States; Lynn Hampton, President and CEO of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority and U.S. Congressman William Delahunt. The speakers were introduced by Mr. Gunay Evinch, President of the Assembly of Turkish American Associations (ATTA).  Dr. Kotil also presented a gift to Ms. Hampton on behalf of the airline.   

Non-stop flights are scheduled to depart from Dulles International Airport at 10:55PM to Atatürk Airport in Istanbul four times per week (Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday) aboard an Airbus A330.

To celebrate the new route, Turkish Airlines is offering an exceptionally discounted rate on all flights from Washington D.C. to Istanbul purchased on or before December 31, 2010. Round-trip flights are available for $751.00 including all taxes and fees, provided the travel takes place before March 31, 2011. Passengers can book their travel on , call 1-800-874-8875 or work with their preferred travel agent.

Turkish Airlines’ new route from Washington, D.C. will allow more Americans the opportunity to explore Istanbul, Turkey and beyond. A gateway between east and west, Istanbul offers visitors an unrivaled glimpse into world history, the chance to experience one of Eurasia’s most cosmopolitan destinations and serves as a convenient hub for travel to other cities in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Turkish Airlines currently flies non-stop direct flights from New York and Chicago.

Passengers aboard Turkish Airlines will enjoy the world-renowned catering by Turkish Do&Co, featuring an assortment of international cuisines as well as authentic Turkish dishes. A pioneer in the aviation industry, Turkish Airlines recently won the SkyTrax World Aviation Award, also known as the “Oscar of the Aviation Industry,” for the “World’s Best Economy Class Onboard Catering.”

Aboard the Airbus A330, both Business Class and Economy Class passengers can expect to enjoy a culinary experience from top cuisines around the world and an extensive inflight entertainment menu complete with individual entertainment systems.

“We are currently one of the world’s fastest growing airlines,” said Mr. Hamdi Topçu, Chairman of Turkish Airlines. “The Washington D.C. gateway is of great importance to our airline as we continue to expand the number of destinations we serve across the U.S., while delivering unparalleled service to our passengers across the globe.”

A member of the Star Alliance network since April 1, 2008, Turkish Airlines continues to maintain its dedication to becoming a global leader in the airline industry. Thefourth biggest network carrier in Europe, Turkish Airlines currently flies to 167 destinations, including 128 international and 39 domestic lines. Established in 1933, Turkish Airlines is known for its impeccable service, flight safety and connectivity worldwide.

“This new direct route from Washington is yet another symbol of the strong relationship between the United States and Turkey, encompassing strategic cooperation on trade, investment, tourism, and much more,” said His Excellency Namik Tan, Turkey’s Ambassador to the United States. He went on to say that Turkish Airlines, Turkey’s flag carrier, has been instrumental in attracting tourism to Turkey from across the globe.

Turkish Airlines’ U.S. expansion will continue with the launch of its fourth gateway and direct route from Los Angeles’ LAX Airport to Atatürk Airport in Istanbul in March 2011

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Delta Airport Consultants named 2010 Best Civil Engineering Firm to Work

Delta Airport Consultants, headquartered in Richmond, VA, was recognized as the 2010 Best Civil Engineering Firm to Work For by CE News magazine.

The firm has placed well in past years, but reaching #1 is an honor for the airport consulting firm.

To develop the rankings, the judges look at areas such as opportunities for challenge and growth, a collaborative environment, compensation, benefits, employee recognition initiatives, recruiting/retention efforts, and professional development programs.

Just as in 2009, Delta was highlighted as being particularly strong in professional development. As Charlie Lamb, the company’s president points out, “We recognize that our employees are our primary key to success and we promote professional development of all individuals.”

One of the judges commented, “it is striking that so many of Delta Airport Consultants’ employees cite ‘excellent customer service’ as a hallmark of what makes a firm one of the ‘best’ to work for, as opposed to more conventional references to employee benefits.”

Delta prides itself on fostering an environment where passion and enthusiasm is rewarded and this is apparent in Charlie Lamb’s job description: “Do the right thing. Help others reach for their best. Plan for a great future. Add value every day. Have Fun – it’s contagious.”

Delta Airport Consultants is a consulting firm that provides airport planning, engineering, and architectural services to airport clients throughout the United States. The 80 person firm is headquartered in Richmond, Virginia and has seven additional offices in Albuquerque, New Mexico; Atlanta, Georgia; Charlotte, North Carolina; Cleveland, Ohio; Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; Little Rock, Arkansas; and Raleigh, North Carolina.

One more week to enter the 2010 Virginia Aviation Photo Contest!

Just a reminder--you have one more week to enter the 2010 Virginia Aviation Photo Contest! Winners will be featured in the 2011-2012 Virginia Aviation Calendar. Entries are due Tuesday, Nov. 16.

Here are the rules again if you need a refresher:

• Photos must have been taken at an aviation event held at a local airport in the Commonwealth of Virginia within the last three years -- events can include air shows, fly-ins, open houses, etc. --and not previously published.

• A person may submit a maximum of 12 photos for the contest. Entry forms and releases must be fully completed for the photo to be considered.

• All entries must be received by Nov. 16.


• All entries will be judged by an impartial panel. Winners will be featured in the 2011 Virginia Aviation Calendar, as well as the DOAV Newsletter, Virginia Aviation, the DOAV Web site, and the Virginia Aviation News blog.

Reproduction Rights:

• All images submitted to the Virginia Department of Aviation remain the property of the photographer who took the photograph, including their copyright to the image.

Submission does not restrict the owners use of his or her work in any form what-so-ever. By entering the contest,the copyright holder does, however, grant permission to the Virginia Department of Aviation to use the image (or images) in any of their publications.

DOAV will make every effort to give submitting photographers photographic credit, but there are rare instances when a photo credit cannot be given (i.e., in a photo collage or because of space limitations). If DOAV is unable to give the donor a photographic credit, they will contact the submitting photographer and explain the situation allowing the owner of the image the option of withdrawing the image(s). In addition, I understand that CDs submitted will not be returned.

How to submit entries:

• Only digital entries will be accepted. Photos should be taken at the highest resolution possible (minimum 1200x1600 pixels). Preferred format is .jpg or .gif. Do not retouch photos using photo editing software. A completed entry form and model release (if needed) should be submitted with each photo. E-mail entries and forms to OR mail a CD to:

Virginia Department of Aviation
Attn: Kelly Pruitt
5702 Gulfstream Road
Richmond, VA 23250

Feel free to pass this on! The contest is open to everyone.

If you have any questions, feel free to call me at 804-236-3631.

Good Luck!

**And speaking of calendars, we have a ton of 2010-2011 Virginia Aviation Calendars left over featuring last year's winners. If you'd like one or more, please call or e-mail me

Monday, November 8, 2010

CNN journalist names "Five Guys" best food at Dulles and National

Here's a fun story for you airport foodies!

Photojournalist Jeremy Harlan frequently flies in and out of airports across the country as part of CNN's team. He put together an article listing his favorite foods at airports from Albuquerque to Washington, DC.

Here is the excerpt on the DC airports:

"Dulles and National are my base airports. Five Guys hamburger chains have exploded across the country, but the first store was in northern Virginia, so Dulles and National can both claim it as their own. The Terminal A location in Dulles provides a welcome respite en route to the far-outlying gates of the United regional flights. At National, look for it tucked around the left-corner on Concourse A. Their bacon cheeseburgers are tough to beat."

Also included in the list are Chick-Fil-A's waffle fries at Atlanta (a personal fave of mine), the chi-dogs at Reggio's at Chicago, barbecue at Intereste BBQ at Memphis, and tamales from El Bravo at Phoenix.

I don't know about you, but I'm hungry!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Christmas Toy Airlift scheduled for December 11

The Virginia Chapter Ninety-Nines are collecting new and unwrapped toys for families of military and wounded veterans during their annual Christmas Toy Airlift.

Toys will be collected at airports around the state until Dec. 11, when volunteer pilots from each location will fly them into Chesterfield County Airport from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. New and unwrapped underwear, socks, baseball caps, fleece lap blankets, shower shoes and toiletries will also be collected. Also needed are gift cards from Ben Franklin, Target and Wal-Mart for snacks and supplies for McGuire’s Veterans’ Hospital and gift cards from Sheetz and Wawa for gasoline for veterans’ outings.

Santa will fly into Chesterfield Airport at 10 a.m. and greet children inside the terminal until 2 p.m.

A rain date is scheduled for Dec. 12. Hot lunches will be available for purchase with proceeds benefiting breast cancer research.

If unable to attend, donations can be dropped off at the following airports: Dinwiddie, Chesterfield, New Kent and Hanover; and the following businesses: Batters Choice, 3105 S. Crater Rd. in Petersburg, and The Hopewell News in Hopewell.

For any questions, contact Betty Vinson, event coordinator, at 804-720-1132.

The Ninety-Nines, Inc. is an international non-profit organization of women pilots with more than 5,500 members worldwide.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Soaring representatives participate in aviation education expo

On Oct. 22, Skyline Soaring Club (SSC) and Skyline Soaring Education Foundation (SSEF) shared a booth at the 5th Annual Aviation Education Expo at Leesburg Airport. Several hundred high school students and adults attended the expo which was designed to expose young people to the various aspects of aviation and to educate them about aviation careers.

The expo was held in the ProJet hangar. The periphery of the hangar held booths of several universities and flight schools, aviation organizations, several government agencies including FAA, TSA and Customs and Border Patrol, as well as some non-aviation private sector corporations. The Air Force, Coast Guard and Marines were also represented.

Static displays in the hangar included: Av-Ed’s C-172; Potomac Flight Training’s King Air; ProJet’s GulfStream G-5 and; Jim Kellett’s sailplane from the Skyline Soaring Club. A number of aircraft including helicopters and private jets were on the ramp in front of the hangar.

SSC’s booth was manned by Bob Jullien, Jim Kellett and, Spencer Annear. The booth was located between AOPA’s booth and the Warren County- Front Royal Airport booth, just off the wing tip of the sailplane. While participants circulated around the periphery many stopped to see the soaring video Jim played on his computer. Many stopped to ask about soaring and learning to soar. Spencer told a number of participants about SSEF’s program and gave out a lot of SSEF flyers.

Monday, November 1, 2010

2010/2011 Aviation school programs announced

The Department of Aviation is once again promoting several aviation education programs for teachers and students in the Commonwealth. The Aviation Teachers Grant Program offers educators in grades K-12 the opportunity to apply for grants (of up to $250) for aviation-related classroom projects. The John R. Lillard Aviation Scholarship Program and Willard G. Plentl, Sr. Aviation Scholarship Program offer scholarships tor Virginia high school seniors. Virginia is also once again participating in the International Aviation Art Contest.

Other programs that educators may wish to investigate are the Real World Design Challenge and Team America Rocketry Challenge.

Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society announces 2010 Hall of Fame inductees

Edward R. Boyer of Virginia Beach, George W. Lutz of Springfield, and Albert M. Orgain IV of Manakin-Sabot will be inducted into the Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame at the Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society’s Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame Induction Dinner at the Virginia Aviation Museum on Nov. 13.

Boyer has been rightly called the “father” of charitable air transportation. Ed devoted over 30 years of his life to the development of a comprehensive worldwide charitable air transportation system in both the medical and disaster arenas. He is the founder, CEO and president of Mercy Medical Airlift, located in Virginia Beach. MMA is a nationwide network of programs that include Angel Flight Mid-Atlantic, Angel Flight of Virginia, the National Patient Travel Center, Mercy Medical Airlift, the Homeland Security Emergency Air Transportation System (HSEATS), Air Compassion America, and Air Compassion for Veterans. These programs help thousands of patients every year to access life-saving or life-improving specialized medical care that would otherwise not be available to them due to barriers of distance, time and finances. In Virginia alone during the 2008 calendar year, 322 Commonwealth pilots completed 273 Angel Flight missions, with a public benefit of $214,461. He also helped create Air Charity Network, formerly known as Angel Flight America, whose more than 7,500 pilots and their regional organizations are bound by common training requirements and protocols necessary for safety, cooperation and quality of service.

Boyer developed a homeland security component of his organization, known as HSEATS, which mobilized volunteer pilots and utilized corporate planes during Hurricane Katrina to aid in disaster relief by performing over 2,600 missions. An engineer, private pilot and former federal senior officer with the Department of Health and Human Services, his visionary insight has led him to foster partnerships with dozens of organizations in the fields of health care, government services, commercial and corporate aviation, disaster relief and charitable lodging. His commitment to help in the healing of military veterans and active duty service members and families led to the creation of Air Compassion for Veterans, which provided over 3,634 free flights for veterans and families affected by deployment in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2008. He has been a pilot for 47 years with commercial, instrument, single and multi-engine and glider ratings, and served on two FAA advisory committees.

Lutz’s love of aviation inspired him to dedicate his time and efforts to improving safety, education, and the enjoyment of general aviation through his work with the FAA, Experimental Aircraft Association and the Quantico Marine Corps Flying Club. He served as an FAA safety counselor for 20 years, beginning in 1980. He was instrumental in the planning and presentation of safe pilot programs for the Dulles FSDO 27 for 22 years. He initiated the planning, research and development of Advisory Circular 90-89A, amateur build aircraft and ultralight flight testing handbook. This Advisory Circular is recognized throughout the world and has provided a recognized safety program for the flight testing of amateur build aircraft. He served as official Experimental Aircraft Association liaison with FAA headquarters on sport aviation issues, National Aviation Weather user forums, traffic at non-towered airports, GPS, and other FAA programs. He was instrumental in founding EAA Chapter 186 and served six terms as president. During his tenure, Chapter 186 organized, developed and managed the long-running and very successful Winchester EAA fly-in. He served as chief flight instructor and supervisor for standardization for the Quantico Marine Corps Flying Club, which maintained 17 airplanes, carried 26 instructors on staff and had a membership of over 550 pilots. In the early 1960s he helped found a flying club at Rose Valley Airport in Prince Georges County, MD, which then moved to Quantico Marine Base.

Lutz joined the Army Air Corps in 1942 after graduating from the University of Iowa. In 1946, he left the service and moved to Seattle where he went to work for Boeing as a staff engineer. He re-entered the service when the Air Force was created and went to Air Force flight school in San Antonio. While in the Air Force, he served as a B-47 test pilot, held a number of staff assignments at the Pentagon and Andrews AFB, and was base commander at Nakon Phanom airbase in Thailand. He retired from the Air Force with the rank of Colonel in 1972. While in the service he was awarded the Legion of Merit medal and the Air Medal.

Orgain, chairman of the VAHS Board from 2002 to 2010, used his varied talents, unsurpassed leadership skills and passion for Virginia’s aviation history to raise the Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society to a state of recognition unmatched in its history. He laid the groundwork for new programs and re-invigorated established programs. This has increased the society’s visibility and strengthened its ability to fulfill the mission statement of telling the story of Virginia’s rich aviation history. Through his leadership, the VAHS has enjoyed a significant increase in monetary donations greatly improving not only the society’s day-to-day operation but its ability to provide Virginia with a quality “product” in the form of programs and information. Programs strengthened and developed during his tenure have placed the society and its mission in view of the general public in a manner that has not been enjoyed in the past.

A resident of Virginia since the age of 5, Orgain learned to fly in 1964, and is a graduate of the Virginia Military Institute, class of 1965, and the Washington and Lee University School of Law. He served as a rotorcraft pilot in the U.S. Army (1965-1968) and flew in Vietnam in UH-1C Huey gunship helicopters. He was wounded twice by enemy fire and awarded two Purple Hearts and two awards of the Distinguished Flying Cross. He is past chairman for the Air and Space Transportation Committee of the Transportation Section of the Virginia State Bar Association and was a charter member of the Virginia Aviation Foundation. He is the lead attorney for the Sands Anderson Law Firm’s Aviation Team where, for more than 30 years, he has served clients in the aviation, transportation and insurance business, earning a national reputation for his skills in aviation accidents, especially “wire strike” matters involving collisions between aircraft and surface-bound towers and cables. He is listed in Best Lawyers in America, Super Lawyers of Virginia and other compilations for his aviation and transportation work.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

New TSA procedures to be implemented Friday

Passengers of the nation’s 450 commercial service airports will now be subjected to new procedures for air travel. The Transportation Security Administration will implement new procedures including a new pat-down protocol for the passenger screening checkpoint and requiring additional personal data to be provided at the moment of booking a ticket.

The new pat-down protocol, beginning Friday, Oct. 29, will be more invasive for passengers who are subject to enhanced screening. The pat-down procedures will include full body, flat palm pat-downs. At airports where back scatter x-ray scanners (full body x-rays) are available, passengers will be required to submit to either the full body x-ray or the enhanced full body pat-down.

Also, on Nov.1, all passengers will be required to provide additional personal data when booking air travel as part of the TSA’s Secure Flight plan. Passengers must provide their full name as it appears on their government issued ID, their date of birth, and their gender when making airline reservations.

U.S. Transportation Secretary LaHood Announces Grant To Improve Charlottesville's Air Service

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today announced a grant of $500,000 to help Charlottesvilleenhance its airline service. The grant is one of 19 awarded nationwide under the U.S. Department of Transportation's Small Community Air Service Development Program, which helps communities across the country develop their own solutions to local air service needs.

Charlottesville is the only Virginia airport to receive this grant.

The grant for Charlottesville will be used to provide revenue guarantees, conduct a marketing program, and offset start-up costs for new service to Chicago's O'Hare International Airport. Public and private sector partners will contribute $95,948 to the program.

"This money will make a difference for Charlottesville," said Secretary LaHood. "Local air service is critical to our nation's communities, both large and small, and these grants will contribute to economic growth while helping to provide better service and more options for air travelers."

The grant program began in 2002 to help small communities address the challenges of local air service, such as high fares, insufficient levels of service, and lack of competition. Since then, the awards have helped more than 200 hundred communities develop projects tailored to their own air service needs, such as providing financial incentives to carriers, conducting studies on the possibilities of expanded service, and carrying out marketing programs to promote existing local service.

All of the grant recipients have made financial commitments toward their grant projects, and most recipients have teamed with local government and the business community to address their local air service needs.

Complete community proposals and the department's final order are available on the Internet at, docket DOT-OST-2010-0124. A list of recipient communities and funding totals is available at

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Virginia Museum of Transportation announces “Wings Over Virginia” Reception featuring Cdr Paul Galanti

The Virginia Museum of Transportation announces the “Wings Over Virginia” fundraising reception to kick off the development of a new Aviation Gallery on Thursday, Nove. 4 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Museum, with the program beginning at 6 p.m. The featured speaker for the event is Commander Paul E. Galanti, former Vietnam POW and current Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Veteran Services. The flight jacket belonging to the late Admiral John Summers will be presented to Cdr Galanti by Mary Louise Summers, widow of the Admiral, for display in the new gallery. Tickets for the reception are $50 per person. RSVP by Nov. 2 to Joan Baker Washburn, event coordinator, at (540) 206-3295. More information about the event and gallery plans is available at

A graduate of the U. S. Naval Academy, Paul Galanti was trained as a Navy jet pilot and flight instructor. He flew 97 combat missions over North Vietnam in his A-4C Skyhawk before being shot down. He was held as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam's infamous “Hanoi Hilton” for nearly seven years until his release in 1973. After a rehabilitation period, he held a series of Navy leadership posts, including a record-setting tenure as Commanding Officer of the Richmond Recruiting District. After retiring from the Navy in 1983, he has been a leader in the private and non-profit sectors, as well, and is a much sought-after motivational speaker. Galanti is currently the National Director of the organization American Ex-Prisoners of War. Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell has recently appointed Paul Galanti as Commissioner of Veterans Services for the Commonwealth of Virginia. Galanti’s military decorations include the Silver Star, Two Legions of Merit for combat, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Bronze Star for combat, nine Air Medals, the Navy Commendation Medal for combat and two Purple Hearts, and he has been inducted into the Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame.

The event’s Honorary Chairman is Captain William B. Overstreet, USAF (Ret). World War II Ace Bill Overstreet was part of the 357th fighter group that escorted bombers on their missions over Germany. His P-51 Mustang, dubbed “The Berlin Express,” is featured in a well-known painting by artist Len Krenzler that depicts Overstreet chasing a German fighter through the base of the Eiffel Tower—a German pilot who didn’t get away.

“We are excited about the leadership in this community and across Virginia who are helping us form our new aviation gallery,” said Donald F. Moser, who is both a pilot and the Museum’s Deputy Director. “After more than a year of planning, the gallery’s design is beginning to capture the thrill of flight and the amazing stories of Virginia’s pilots. To fly represents a dream shared by so many of our visitors—and by visitors of all ages.” The Museum previously housed an aviation gallery which was destroyed by an intense storm that blew the roof off the building in 2006.

The Leadership Committee for “Wings Over Virginia” includes the Honorable Terry Austin, the Honorable Bill Bestpitch, the Honorable David Bowers, the Honorable Butch Church, Roy D’Ardenne, the Honorable John Edwards, the Honorable Randy Foley, the Honorable Brad Grose, Wes Hillman, the Honorable William B. Hopkins, Captain Larry Johnson, the Honorable Granger Macfarlane, Captain Harold McGrath, Bittle Porterfield, Claude Smith, David Smith, Jay Turner, Brigadier General Scott Van Cleef, Sherry Wallace, and Art Whittaker.

About the Virginia Museum of Transportation

Home to two of the most powerful steam locomotives in existence today—the N&W Class A 1218 and the N&W Class J 611—the Virginia Museum of Transportation regularly attracts visitors of all ages from across the U.S. and 45 foreign countries. Through exhibits, artifacts, and an outstanding collection of rail equipment, cars, trucks, airplanes, and more, the Museum tells the rich story of Virginia’s transportation history.

The Virginia Museum of Transportation is the Official Transportation Museum of the Commonwealth of Virginia, but receives no state funding. In 2010, the Museum was named Non-Profit Arts & Culture Small Business of the Year by the Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce. The Museum is located in the historic N&W Freight Station at 303 Norfolk Avenue SW, Roanoke, VA 24016. Open Monday-Saturday 10-5 and Sunday 1-5. 540/342.5670.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Just a reminder--Safety seminar tonight in Danville!

The Virginia Department of Aviation and AOPA Air Safety Foundation's safety seminar will be presented at Danville Regional Airport tonight at 7 p.m.

Andy Miller will present "Real World IFR:"

Sure, you breezed through the check ride or aced that last proficiency check. But you're still hesitant to venture aloft on that "three hundred and one" day. Find out how pilots who fly every day in all kinds of weather do it. ASF's "Real World IFR" Safety Seminar goes beyond basic IFR training into the world of professional piloting. Even if you don’t make a career out of it, you can at least emulate the stellar safety record of the pros.

Andy flies all over the country in his beautiful 1973 Cessna Skylane to help pilots and CFIs sharpen their skills. A member of the National Speakers Association Wisconsin chapter, Andy has extensive experience speaking in the technology world, and in 2004 he joined the AOPA Air Safety Foundation first as a Safety Seminar presenter, and now as a FIRC instructor. A commercial pilot, he holds CFI-A, CFI-I, IGI, and AGI certificates. He regularly flies Young Eagle and Angel Flight missions, is an AOPA Airport Support Network Volunteer, and serves as a FAASTeam Lead Representative in the Great Lakes Region.

Danville Regional Airport
General Aviation
424 Airport Drive
Danville, Virginia 24540
(434) 793-7033

The safety seminar will be presented at the Virginia Aviation Museum on Wednesday and the Virginia Air and Space Center in Hampton on Thursday. Hope to see you there!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Virginia aviator to be inducted into the EAA Hall of Fame

Morton Lester of Martinsville is one of five aviators to be inducted into the Experimental Aircraft Association's Hall of Fame Oct. 29 at the EAA Aviation Center in Oshkosh, Wis. Hall of Fame members are recognized for their contributions to the history, development, and growth in their different areas of sport aviation.

Lester, also a member of the Vintage Aircraft Association Hall of Fame, learned to fly from his father, the owner of Martinsville's first airport. At 10 years old, he made his first solo flight. Over the years, he owned many aircraft, ranging from modern Bonanzas, Meyers 200s, and Comanches to vintage Wacos, Travel Airs, Howards, and Monocoupes.

Before donating them to aviation museums, Lester restored many prototypes and racing aircraft, including the Crosby CR-4 and the Keith Rider Jackrabbit that competed in the Greve and Thompson Trophy air races in the late 1930s. Lester bought a derelict aircraft, at that time believed to be the prototype Johnson Rocket, to save it from being junked. After selling it to Leonard McGinty, the aircraft was restored and purchased by he Swift Museum Foundation. Subsequent research revealed that the airplane was initially the Swift prototype and later, after modifications, was designated the Johnson Rocket prototype.

Having been appointed by three Virginia governors, Lester served 10 years on the Virginia Aviation Board. He served 35 years as a board member of the Blue Ridge Airport Authority, with 23 years as chairman. Instrumental in the creation of the Virginia Aviation Museum, Lester was an early member of EAA/VAA Chapter 3 and has served as its president several times. He also served on the board of directors for what is now the Vintage Aircraft Association, as well as the board of directors of the EAA Aviation Foundation.

Other inductees include the late Harold D. “Hal” Weekley of Mabelton, Ga. (Warbirds);  Dean Wilson of Clarkston, Wash. (Homebuilders); John Ballantyne of Millsboro, Del. (Ultralight); and the late Jimmy Franklin of Spruce Pine, N.C. (International Aerobatic Club). In addition, Oshkosh businessman John Vette will receive the Henry Kimberly Spirit of Leadership Award for his efforts on behalf of EAA and the local community. Renowned aviation writer Mac McClellan will serve as the keynote speaker.

"Each of these five individuals has made their own unique contributions to the world of flight that has benefited all of us,” said Rod Hightower, EAA president and CEO. “These inductees serve as an example for everyone involved in flying and represent the best that recreational aviation has to offer. We recognize their commitment and passion for flying and are honored to welcome them into the EAA Halls of Fame.”

Friday, October 22, 2010

Teacher Workshop Brings New Math and Science Programs

Over 50 local area teachers from Charlotte, Campbell and Appomattox counties will attend a hands-on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) workshop sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the Parametric Technology Corporation (PTC). The workshop will be held at the Eureka Elementary School in Keysville at 4 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 26.

The workshop will give educators additional tools that will help students apply math and science to real life applications using computer technology.

“More than 50 percent of the current science and engineering workforce is approaching retirement and yet fewer and fewer students have a desire to enter these fields.” said Diane Crean, Deputy Regional Administrator, Federal Aviation Administration, Eastern Region, “ We need to incorporate new styles of teaching into the classroom that shows the relevance of science, math, and engineering. We have found that when these free technological programs are incorporated into the school curriculums, students find out just how much fun math and science can be. This is the spark we want to ignite.”

The STEM workshop will feature two main programs: “Smart Skies” geared for grades 5-9. Smart Skies offers two free web-based programs “Fly by Math” and “Line Up with

Math”. Both of these programs give the students distance-rate-time math problems to solve using a typical scenario that an air traffic controller would use to safely separate two airplanes. These math problems are at the pre-algebra and algebra levels. For more information on Smart Skies, please go to the website:

The second program featured at the workshop is Real World Design Challenge (RWDC). This program is geared toward grades 9-12. In this program, a design challenge is given to students in which they must utilize their skills in real world applications. The challenges are based on the subject areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics which are the basis of the STEM program. Each participating school is provided with professional engineering software valued a nearly $1 million. The software is donated by various industries focused in these areas. For more information on Real World Design Challenge please go the website:

These programs are free to the school and are compatible with current curriculum.

In addition to the teacher workshop, local schools will also get the benefit of mentors provided by Liberty University’s School of Aeronautics, the largest flight training organization in Virginia.

Members of the press are welcome to attend the workshop. For more information, please contact: John Dudley Barksdale 434-942-2323.

Want a "haunting" aviation experience?

If you're in the Halloween spirit with an aviation twist, head to Salem for the Salem Museum Ghost Walk on Saturday and Tuesday, Oct. 26. The “ghosts” will tell their stories in East Hill Cemetery and East Hill North, starting at 6:30 p.m. on those nights.

One of the featured ghosts will be William Knox Martin, a Salem-born early aviation pioneer who was the first man to fly over the Andes mountains. According to an article in the Roanoke Times, his aviation career spanned barely 17 years. In that short time, he taught flying in New England, California, Canada and Australia. He was one of the first test pilots and wartime aviators and he helped introduce aviation to South America. He was inducted into the Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame in 2005.

You can read more about the ghost walk: here

Also happening this Saturday:

Leesburg Executive Airport Airshow will be held from 10 a.m. - 4p.m. Free admission. For more information contact Tim Deike at (703) 737-7126 or

Hampton Roads Ninety-Nines Poker Run will be held at Walkefield, Hampton Roads, Chesapeake, Suffolk, and Franklin Airports. All participants must present their hand at Franklin Airport by 1p.m. Breakfast and lunch are available for purchase at Franklin. Proceeds will go to the Ninety-Nines Endowment Fund. For more information contact, Jeanette Hibpshman at or (757) 538-0137.

And don't forget that Virginia Aviation Safety Week is happening next week! The first seminar will take place Monday at Blacksburg Airport from 7 p.m.-9 p.m. The topic is Real World IFR. And don't forget to get your Virginia Aviation Ambassador Passport stamped while you're there!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Looking for fuel costs and FBO info? Yep, there's an app for that!

From Zak O'Brien of Aviation International News...

Applications for smartphones are a growing trend among business aviation companies, which are embracing this technology in order to add to the convenience of their services. The most popular of these phone apps are pilot-friendly information databases.

Signature Flight Support has released the iFBO app for the iPhone and iPad. The app can get up-to-date fuel prices and calculate the price breakdown based on the aircraft type. The iFBO app can also find a Signature FBO, provide contact information and show a list of services and amenities available at the location. A location link to Google Maps is also available. The application can be downloaded for free on the iTunes store.

With smartphone apps, pilots don’t need to access a computer with an Internet connection to access flight information. Universal Avionics announced a free phone app for Droid users that can connect right into the cockpit. The Universal Droid app connects the phone to Universal’s UniNet, which provides the customers’ account navigation database, operator assistance and billing information.

The app can access Universal contact information from anywhere in the world and is available to view in the cockpit through the company’s new solid-state data-transfer unit.

West Star Aviation’s new Experience On Call application provides a comprehensive worldwide directory that allows customers to inquire about service needs specific to their aircraft or geographic location.

JetNet is releasing an app that can access its Evolution information network. The data includes aircraft owner records, market summaries, aircraft for sale and aircraft performance specifications. The app is available for iPhone, BlackBerry and Droid phones.

Universal Weather and Aviation’s mobile Web app gives customers access to all of the company’s services from any type of smartphone. Instead of developing software apps for each type of smartphone, the mobile Web allows any smartphone user to access Universal’s data and it also avoids the need to submit apps to smartphone companies’ stores for approval.

Charter operator Solairus Aviation has released a mobile Web app that enables users to view one-way flights as they come available. The mobile app was created in an attempt to occupy empty leg flights and alert potential customers to these discounted flights.

Monday, October 18, 2010

2010 Virginia Aviation Photo Contest is here!

Do you have a beautiful photo taken at a local airport event and don't know what to do with it?

Enter it in the Virginia Department of Aviation's 2010 Photo Contest! Winners will be featured in the 2011 Virginia Aviation Calendar!

Contest rules:

• Photos must have been taken at an aviation event held at a local airport in the Commonwealth of Virginia within the last three years -- events can include air shows, fly-ins, open houses, etc. --and not previously published.

• A person may submit a maximum of 12 photos for the contest. Entry forms and releases must be fully completed for the photo to be considered.

• All entries must be received by Nov. 16.


• All entries will be judged by an impartial panel. Winners will be featured in the 2011 Virginia Aviation Calendar, as well as the DOAV Newsletter, Virginia Aviation, the DOAV Web site, and the Virginia Aviation News blog.

Reproduction Rights:

• Photos submitted to the contest may be used by the Virginia Department of Aviation to promote aviation in Virginia. All entries become and remain the property of the Virginia Department of Aviation and may be used without permission or credit. CDs will not be returned.

How to submit entries:

• Only digital entries will be accepted. Photos should be taken at the highest resolution possible (minimum 1200x1600 pixels). Preferred format is .jpg or .gif. Do not retouch photos using photo editing software. A completed entry form and model release (if needed) should be submitted with each photo. E-mail entries and forms to OR mail a CD to:

Virginia Department of Aviation
Attn: Kelly Pruitt
5702 Gulfstream Road
Richmond, VA 23250

Feel free to pass this on! The contest is open to everyone.

If you have any questions or need a release form, feel free to e-mail me at, or call me at 804-236-3631.

Good Luck!

UFO sighting in Richmond?

Just read the story below on the Richmond Times-Dispatch Web site...

Fan District residents report strange light in sky

A bizarre, darting light in the sky has bewildered residents of Richmond's Fan District.

The light -- a small dot, not a beam -- seemed to dance above the 2100 block of Floyd Avenue, and an area just to the south, Sunday from at least 9:30 p.m. to 11.

People gathered on sidewalks, pointed to the sky and shot pictures and videos. Some people reported seeing the UFO Saturday night, also.

"This is really bizarre," said Matt French, 26, as he watched the light Sunday night. He said he found it to be "not threatening -- strange certainly."

A Times-Dispatch reporter also watched the light. The distance was tough to judge, but the source of the light appeared to be several hundred yards up, well below airplane level.

The moon and a planet, both quite still, shone brightly near the light.

Various observers said the light looked like a phosphorescent bat, a drunken Superman, or a kite bearing LED lights.

And there happens to be video!

What do you guys think? Any ideas what this could be??

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Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport has 7.1% passenger increase in September

The Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport increased passenger traffic by 7.1% in September. 91,465 passengers used the Airport in September 2010 compared with 85,371 passengers in September 2009. September’s passenger traffic was an all time record high for the airport during the same month in all previous years.

“We are extremely proud of the consistent increases in passenger traffic we have enjoyed. Continued passenger growth supports our existing mix of air service providers and we believe validates the future expansion of non-stop destinations. We strive to offer exceptional customer service and value-added travel options, and look forward to serving our communities during the upcoming holiday travel season” stated Stephen M. Mallon, Chairman of the Peninsula Airport Commission (PAC).

The Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport was also recently recognized by Airports Council International-North America (ACI-NA) as one of 28 airports to place in their 2010 Excellence in Marketing and Communications Contest. This year 55 airports submitted over 250 entries; the Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport won second place for video and film productions. The video series was produced in conjunction with News Channel 3 (WTKR) to promote new air service to Denver on Frontier Airlines.

The Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport is served by four airlines: AirTran Airways, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Airlines and US Airways with non-stop service to seven domestic destinations (Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Denver, NY-LaGuardia, Orlando and Philadelphia) with connections throughout the world.

For more information visit us on the web at or follow us on www.facebook/FLYPHF and twitter (flyphf).

Friday, October 15, 2010

New Kent fly-in also this weekend!

Don't forget the Williamsburg-Jamestown Airport 40th anniversary open house and motorcycle poker run is this Saturday!

Also this Saturday:
The 8th Annual New Kent County Festival of Flight will take place from 10 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. at New Kent County Airport. Airplane displays, special attractions, airplane rides for sale in a restored 1943 Fairchild PT-19, large scale radio controlled aircraft demonstration, food and beverages. Register to win prizes including a New Kent Aviation Introductory Flight Lesson.


Thursday, October 14, 2010

NASA and Gowalla Launch Partnership With Search for Moon Rocks

Here's a fun story for a rain day...

NASA and Gowalla are bringing people one small step closer to the universe. Anyone who uses Gowalla, a mobile and web service, now has the opportunity to find and collect four NASA-related virtual items -- a moon rock, a NASA patch, a spacesuit and a space shuttle.

Gowalla's mission is to inspire discovery by connecting people with the places around them. When Gowalla users virtually "check-in" at NASA-related venues via their iPhone, Blackberry, Android, Palm or iPad, they now have a chance to find one of the four items.

Virtual moon rocks can be found when Gowalla users check in to any location where a real one is on display. The United States successfully brought lunar samples back to Earth during the Apollo 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, and 17 missions. NASA provides a number of these moon rocks for display and public viewing at museums, planetariums and scientific expositions around the world.

To help people find the lunar samples, Gowalla and JESS3, a creative agency that specializes in data visualization, created a special edition NASA+Gowalla Map: Search for the Moon Rocks.

Gowalla users can find the virtual NASA patch, spacesuit and space shuttles by checking in to NASA visitor centers, agency-related locations, or one of the more than 400 museums, science centers, planetariums, observatories, parks, nature centers, zoos and aquariums that are part of NASA's Museum Alliance.

The partnership also enables a NASA account on Gowalla and an account for astronaut Mike Massimino, both linked to their respective Twitter accounts, @NASA, and @Astro_Mike. NASA and Massimino also will drop virtual items for users to find and collect throughout the nation.

Anyone with a Gowalla account who collects three of the four items will receive a special pin in their Gowalla Passport. In addition, the first 100 people to collect three items will receive a poster of the map in the mail.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Williamsburg-Jamestown Airport to celebrate 40th anniversary this weekend

Williamsburg-Jamestown Airport will celebrate its 40th anniversary with an open house and charity motorcycle ride (poker run) on Saturday, Oct. 16.

The open house will include displays from the Eastern Aviation Association, Virginia Aviation Historical Society, Youth Aviation Educational Foundation, Vintage Japanese Motorcycle Club of Va., as well as helicopter rides by Virginia Helicopter Assoc., pedal planes for kids and food. Pilots are also invited to display their own vintage, modern, civilian or military aircraft.

Registration for the poker run will be from 8 a.m.-11 a.m. Fees are $15 for bike and rider, $5 for additional rider and $5 for additional hands. Best hand wins $300.00.

Proceeds from the poker run will benefit the battered womens shelter,  Wounded Warriors, Hunters for the Hungry, student scholarships and others.

For more information, contact; Charley Rogers at 757-565-3484,; Stan Stout at 757-592-6489,; Dave Efimetz at 757-870-5002.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

This weekend's aviation events!

Another beautiful weekend is on tap for the Commonwealth! Why not enjoy it at one of many aviation events happening this weekend?


Air Fest 2010 will be held from 10a.m.- 4 p.m. at Culpeper Regional Airport. Static displays of aircraft from vintage planes to modern jets. An airshow to see these planes in flight. Fun for the whole family. All this and more and its still a free event at Culpeper Regional Airport. For more information contact, Tanya Woodward at (540) 825-8280 or or visit

EAA Chapter 511 Shenandoah Valley is having the 7th Annual Shenandoah Valley Poker Run. Start time is at pilot's discretion, but participants will meet at Shenandoah Valley Regional (SHD) at 4 pm to see who has the best hand. The Poker Run will be held as a Benefit event for David Van Clief, a flight instructor at Eagles Nest Airport, who was unexpectedly taken seriously ill. ALL entry fees (and additional donations) will go toward his expenses. Prizes will still be awarded for best hand, worst hand, etc. For further information please contact Sherrie @

And don't forget

October 10-13, 2010
Wings of Freedom Tour B-17, B-24 and P-51 Mustang visit Warrenton-Fauquier Airport. On Sunday, October 10 there will be a luncheon with WWII veterans speaking about their experiences in the war. Rides are available in the bombers and the Mustang! Walk-aboard tours also available. Call the Collings Foundation to reserve a 30-minute flight in the airplanes: 800-568-8924. For more information, call the KHWY FBO: 540-422-8285. Or visit Collings Foundation at

Skyline Soaring Education Foundation update

Skyline Soaring Education Foundation is moving forward with its program of flight scholarships, orientation rides and, public presentations about soaring. In August, it received IRS recognition as a public charity which means, among other things, that donations to it are tax deducible.

Thanks to Dick Otis, the Web site,, is up and operating, with a connection to PayPal to make giving easier.

Spencer Annear manned the SSEF table at the Front Royal Airshow Sept. 11. The table was set up next to George Hazelrigg's sailplane, so many people stopped by to talk about soaring. A number of children were thrilled to sit in the cockpit. Eleven filled out applications for a chance to take one of the two orientation flights they awarded that day. The winners were two children from Front Royal, an twelve year old girl and a fourteen year old boy. Each was given a FAST certificate.

Prospectively, SSEF plans to attend the Aviation Expo at Leesburg Oct. 22 to tell participants about its program.

SEF is dependent on public donations so if you think it has a program you can support,
send a donation,through the Web site, or by mail to: SSEF Donations, 2022 North Kensington, Arlington, Viriginia 22205.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Leesburg will show off upgrades at airshow Oct. 23

Leesburg Executive Airport recently completed its south apron expansion which includes six corporate hangars; 10 T-hangars and 23 new tie-downs. All the T-hangars are full with a waiting list as are the tie-downs full with a waiting list.

“The airport currently has only one occupant for our corporate hangars,” said Tim Deike, airport manager. “We would like to have five more.”

Leesburg is also completing the installation/construction of the FAA Instrument landing System Glideslope component. The localizer is already installed and operational.

To show off their new facilities and upgrades, Leesburg is have an airshow Oct. 23 from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. The show will include warbirds, aerobatics, Coast Guard display and wing walkers.

After the show is the Commemorative Air Force Hangar Dance from 5 p.m. - 11 p.m. Ticket maybe bought in advance from their Website,, or at the PX which will be on site the day of the show.

For more information on the show and Leesburg Executive Airport, visit

Aviation Safety Week is Oct. 25-28

The Virginia Department of Aviation and AOPA Air Safety Foundation will present safety seminars at four locations across the Commonwealth of Virginia Oct. 25-28 from 7-9 p.m.

Andy Miller will present "Real World IFR:"

Sure, you breezed through the check ride or aced that last proficiency check. But you're still hesitant to venture aloft on that "three hundred and one" day. Find out how pilots who fly every day in all kinds of weather do it. ASF's "Real World IFR" Safety Seminar goes beyond basic IFR training into the world of professional piloting. Even if you don’t make a career out of it, you can at least emulate the stellar safety record of the pros.

Andy flies all over the country in his beautiful 1973 Cessna Skylane to help pilots and CFIs sharpen their skills. A member of the National Speakers Association Wisconsin chapter, Andy has extensive experience speaking in the technology world, and in 2004 he joined the AOPA Air Safety Foundation first as a Safety Seminar presenter, and now as a FIRC instructor. A commercial pilot, he holds CFI-A, CFI-I, IGI, and AGI certificates. He regularly flies Young Eagle and Angel Flight missions, is an AOPA Airport Support Network Volunteer, and serves as a FAASTeam Lead Representative in the Great Lakes Region.

The following dates and locations are:

Oct. 25
Virginia Tech Airport
1601 Tech Center Drive
Blacksburg, Virginia 24060
(540) 231-4444

Oct. 26
Danville Regional Airport
General Aviation
424 Airport Drive
Danville, Virginia 24540
(434) 793-7033

Oct. 27
Virginia Aviation Museum
Richmond International Airport
5701 Huntsman Road
Richmond, Virginia 23250
(804) 236-3622

Oct. 28
Virginia Air & Space Center
600 Settlers Landing Road
Hampton, Virginia 23669
(757) 727-0900

The AOPA Air Safety Foundation, founded in 1950, is dedicated to making flying easier and safer for general aviation pilots.

Governor McDonnell Comments on U.S. Navy’s Announcement of Airfield Contract Proposal

Governor Bob McDonnell today released the following statement after the U.S. Navy announced that it will begin negotiations with the City of Franklin to conduct Field Carrier Landing Practice (FCLP) operations at Franklin Municipal Airport for the E-2/C-2 squadrons that are currently home-based at the Naval Station Norfolk Chambers Field. The decision came in the wake of the Navy’s confirmation that it held an already existing real estate interest in Franklin Municipal Airport which effectively ends any previous efforts to acquire through a competitive process the use of another airfield suitable for the E-2/C-2 to use. This move also negates the necessity for the Navy to conduct any E-2/C-2 related operations at NAS Jacksonville, Florida four to six times per year. Once completed, this agreement will provide increased local airfield capacity for FCLP training.

Speaking about the announcement, Governor McDonnell noted, “This is a great utilization of resources between the City of Franklin and the U.S. Navy. The Franklin Municipal Airport is a logical and convenient choice that meets the current needs of the Navy. In addition, the City of Franklin will see direct economic benefits from the lease. This good news is the result of eight months of collaboration between the Virginia Department of Aviation, our administration, and the U.S. Navy to identify a suitable training field.”

The Navy is negotiating for the use of an airfield for E-2/C-2 aircraft in order to provide a near term, interim solution to Navy Auxiliary Landing Field (NALF) Fentress FCLP capacity shortfalls. The agreement would also eliminate the need for the E-2/C-2 Fleet Replacement Squadron to conduct out-of-area FCLP operations in NAS Jacksonville, Fla., four to six times per year.

This action will be examined under all appropriate environmental laws, including the National Environmental Policy Act. The goal is to achieve initial operating capability by January 2012.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

DOAV director sits down with State Aviation Journal

The State Aviation Journal asked Randall Burdette, newly elected Chairman of the National Association of State Aviation Officials and Director of the Virginia Department of Aviation what the membership can expect for the coming year.

“We have a great Executive Team, a very dedicated group of Regional Directors, and of course our talented President Henry Ogrodzinski, and the NASAO staff, to tackle any challenges that may arise,” said Burdette, “and to take advantage of the opportunities before us, to grow NASAO.”

The 2011 Executive Committee will be working to update the NASAO Strategic Plan, visiting their vision statement, evaluating NASAO’s core mission and according to Burdette, establishing their goals for the coming year. “We will be working to expand NASAO benefits and revenue sources,” said Burdette. “One of our core functions is Communications.”

Burdette said they want to create a communications plan that improves their two-way communications to; 1) their members; 2) to federal agencies such as FAA, TSA, NTSB and their legislative leaders, and 3) to other aviation/aerospace organizations and partners. “Key to our communications plan is the update our web site to better serve our members and to be the electronic face of NASAO to the world,” said Burdette.

Under Joe Peska’s [Vice Chair] leadership, they plan to see new growth in the NASAO Center for Research and Education. “We have created three new Directors in the Center,” said Burdette. “Director of Research, John Eagerton, [Alabama], Director of Education, Bob Woods, [Tennessee], and the Director of Best Practices, which Joe [Pestka], is looking to fill.” In the area of Research, Burdette says they are looking to address the organization’s Research needs through the Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP). In the Education area, they are planning to continue the Art Contest as the signature event for education, and are planning their first Director’s Course.

In the area of Best Practices, Burdette says they plan to survey the membership to determine the areas of “Best Practices” that are of most interest to the membership. At that point they can research and develop the best practices and provide to each member, a NASAO Best Practices Review in their desired area. “This will be a tool to assist our members in making improvements in their organizations,” said Burdette, “by having a third party review that will culminate in a written report under the NASAO logo.”

“Our leadership team knows we have challenges and opportunities ahead of us in the coming year,” said Burdette, “and we know we have limited resources in both time and money to address all the challenges and opportunities.” By planning and prioritizing, he hopes to make progress this year in the most important areas for the NASAO membership. “We have great leadership in Joe Pestka, Debbie Alke, and Tommy Booth,” said Burdette. “All in line for the coming years to make it happen for NASAO and our members.”

Friday, October 1, 2010

There are still more air shows happening!

Time is running out on air show season, so I urge you to fly/drive/swim to one this weekend before Old Man Winter is here!

Saturday and Sunday

EAA Chapter 186 "Flyin & Cruisin Festival" will be held from 8a.m.-4 p.m. at Winchester Regional Airport. Two days of family fun including pancake breakfast each day, fly-in aircraft, classic and antique cars, youth activities including Moon Bounce and Young Eagle rides (Saturday only). Berlin Airlift C-54 "Spirit of Freedom" on display with a candy drop on Sunday. Sponsored by EAA Chapter 186. For more information contact Rich Largent at (301) 801-3725 or

Airports and Aviation clubs--don't see your event listed? Don't forget to e-mail me about your airshows and fly-ins to be included in the blog and on the DOAV Web site!

NASA invites Virginia students to become 2011 Aerospace Scholars

Are you looking for an experience that is out of this world? Planning a mission to Mars and gaining college credit are just two perks high school juniors in Virginia can experience through The Virginia Aerospace Science and Technology Scholars (VASTS) program.

The program, in its fourth year at NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton is now accepting applications for its interactive on-line science, technology, engineering and math program. The semester-long curriculum teaches students about aerospace exploration. Learning takes place through simulations, weekly reading assignments, online games, video segments and online quizzes. The program is open to high school juniors, including homeschoolers, across the Commonwealth. Deadline for application is Nov. 5.

Based on course performance, scholars may be selected to spend a week at NASA Langley where they will work with scientists and engineers, design and build robotic rovers, learn about NASA careers and plan a human mission to Mars.

Student comments are the best testimonial for the program:

“This program has prepared me by opening my eyes to the type of requirements that I must meet in order to pursue a career in math and science,” said Iriat Faisal of George C. Mason High School in Bridgewater, Va.

“I loved the academy,” said Courtney Maimon from Osbourn Park High School in Manassas, Va. “Everyone here is so driven. It’s fun getting to work with people who have the same interests as me.”

“The curriculum helped me improve many of my skills, such as focusing, writing, communicating with others and listening to what other people have to say,” said Anthony Guadino-Sullivan from West Springfield High School in Springfield, Va. “The academy prepared me to think the impossible can be done, to respect others’ ideas and input and taught me the importance of teamwork.”

Upon completion of the program, students can receive up to four college credits from Thomas Nelson Community College.

The Virginia Aerospace Science and Technology Scholars program uses a NASA-developed curriculum with a space-based theme and is aligned with Virginia Standards of Learning. Master educators work with students online, providing guidance and feedback on assignments.

VASTS is a partnership between the Virginia Space Grant Consortium and NASA Langley Research Center with assistance from the Virginia Department of Education and industry partners.

For more information on the VASTS program and for an application, visit

Wings of Freedom tour to visit Virginia

The Wings of Freedom tour, featuring an authentically restored B-17, B-24 and P-51, will visit three airports in Virginia in October.

The tour, sponsored by the Collings Foundation, will visit: Warrenton-Fauquier Airport in Warrenton Oct. 10-13, Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport in Weyers Cave Oct. 18-20, and Chesterfield County Airport Oct. 20-22.

The tour will arrive at Warrenton-Fauquier Airport at 10 a.m. on Oct. 10 and will be on display at the main ramp until the aircraft departs Oct. 13 at noon. Hours of ground tours and display are 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Oct. 10-11 and 10 a.m.-noon on Oct. 13. The 30-minute flight experiences are normally scheduled before and after the ground tour times above.

The tour will arrive at Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport at 2 p.m. on Oct. 18 and will be on display at Min Ramp until the aircraft departs Oct.20 at noon. Hours of ground tours and display are 2 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. on Oct. 18; 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. on Oct. 19; and 9 a.m. - noon Oct. 20. The 30-minute flight experiences are normally scheduled before and after the ground tour times above.

The tour will arrive at Chesterfield County Airport at 2 p.m. on Oct. 20 and will be on display at the main ramp until the aircraft departs Oct. 22 at noon. Hours of ground tours and display are 2 p.m. - 5 p.m. on Oct. 20; 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Oct. 21; and 9 a.m. - noon on Oct. 22. The 30-minute flight experiences are normally scheduled before and after the ground tour times above.

The Collings Foundation is a non-profit, educational foundation (501-C3), founded in 1979. The purpose of the foundation is to organize and support "living history" events that enable Americans to learn more about their heritage through direct participation.

The Wings of Freedom Tour travels the nation as a flying tribute to the flight crews who flew them, the ground crews who maintained them, the workers who built them, the soldiers, sailors and airmen they helped protect; and the citizens and families that share the freedom that they helped preserve.

The B-17 & B-24 were the backbone of the American effort during the war from 1942 to 1945 and were famous for their ability to sustain damage and still accomplish the mission. Despite the risks of anti-aircraft fire, attacking enemy fighters, and the harrowing environment of sub-zero temperatures, many B-17s and B-24s safely brought their crews home. The P-51 Mustang was affectionately known as the bombers “Little Friend” – saving countless crews from attacking axis fighters. After the war, many aircraft were scrapped for their raw aluminum to rebuild a nation in post-war prosperity and therefore very few were spared. The rarity of the B-17, B-24 & P-51 and their importance to telling the story of WWII is why the Collings Foundation continues to fly and display the aircraft nationwide.

At each location, local veterans and their families are encouraged to visit and share their experiences and stories with the public. For aviation enthusiasts, the tour provides opportunity for the museum to come to the visitor. For more information, visit

Cost to view the planes, inside and out, is $12 for adults and $6 for children under 12. There is no charge for WWII Veterans to tour through the aircraft. There is a discounted school rate of $2 per student and $12 per chaperone. Visitors may also take a 30-minute flight aboard the aircraft. Flights on either the B-17 or B-24 are $425 per person. P-51 flights are $2,200 for 30 minutes and $3,200 for 60 minutes. For reservations and information on flight experiences, call 800-568-8924.