June 22, 2010
By AOPA ePublishing staff
The Cirrus Owners and Pilots Association Migration in Dayton, Ohio, June 17 through 19, drew hundreds of Cirrus aircraft as well as AOPA President Craig Fuller and Canadian Owners and Pilots Association President Kevin Psutka to celebrate general aviation and discuss challenges facing the industry.
Before discussing the top three issues facing GA, Fuller shared one of his more memorable moments at AOPA with the group.
”It involved me, a Cirrus, and a very happy and surprised AOPA member,“ Fuller said, hinting at the surprise revealing of AOPA’s 2009 Sweepstakes Let’s Go Flying Cirrus SR22 to AOPA member Michael Graves on Super Bowl Sunday in Grass Valley, Calif.
Psutka and Fuller then spoke to about 200 pilots in attendance about the top three challenges each organization is facing. Psutka cited his organization’s concerns about unmanned aerial systems, security policies, and keeping Canada’s borders and airports open. Fuller explained three of AOPA’s top initiatives, which include increasing the pilot population; helping to shape NextGen, the modernized air traffic control system; and finding a replacement for 100LL, which proved to be the hottest topic at the event. After the migration event, Fuller stayed in Dayton to meet with Cirrus owners and representatives from other type clubs to discuss the association’s efforts on finding an avgas replacement.
The key to success on all of these issues facing pilots in Canada and the United States is to be active, engaged members of the GA community, Fuller stressed.
”With so much going on, it’s vital that we all get engaged in keeping GA strong,“ he encouraged pilots. ”If each of us does just a few things, we can make an enormous difference in the future of GA.“
A touch of history, affordable flying, unique sightseeing, a good meal, and a community of pilots: Isn’t that what general aviation is all about?
Getting the job done on the local and national levels requires long-term planning, a hands-on approach, and keeping the effort moving, said Sean Collins, AOPA’s Eastern regional manager.
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