AOPA Aviation Summit: Celebrating our freedom to fly

Aviation rocks Long Beach

January 1, 2011

  • It’s opening day of AOPA Aviation Summit 2010 in Long Beach, California, the keynote speech featuring AOPA President Craig Fuller is being broadcast on AOPA Live, and it’s standing room only on the convention floor.
  • Sean D. Tucker entertains and delights the audience in his AOPA Live interview.
  • In honor of Veteran's Day, representatives of four U.S. services present the colors.
  • At Controller’s Corner, participants interact with local air traffic controllers (above right). More than 300 exhibitors share their products and services with attendees.
  • Airportfest.
  • At Airportfest.
  • "Fifi" the B-29 Bomber.
  • A packed crowd enjoys the Aviation in the Movies Luncheon, getting a behind-the-scenes look at aviation stunts in film by movie stunt pilot Corkey Fornof and an exclusive look at the making of the award-winning documentary Speed and Angels.
  • On a beautiful Friday evening, downtown Long Beach hosts a rocking block party.
  • Women in Aviation President Peggy Chabrian delights participants in the Women’s Wing with her stories about learning to fly.
  • Inside the Convention Center.
  • Overhead at Airportfest.
  • Inside the forums.
  • Downtown Long Beach.
  • Downtown Long Beach.
  • "FiFi" the B-29 Bomber.
  • Long Beach Skyline.
  • Aerial shot of Airportfest.

There was dancing in the streets of Long Beach, California, on the second day of AOPA’s annual three-day gathering of all things aviation—Aviation Summit 2010—and if area residents didn’t know we’d arrived, they did now. From the roar of Fifi’s radial engine as the famed B–29 landed for Airportfest at Long Beach Daugherty Field to the sound of the rock-and-roll tribute band on Pine Avenue in downtown Long Beach, aviators were in the mood to celebrate.

While the industry, like so much of the country, has been going through tough times, the mood at Summit wasn’t discouraging—in fact, it was upbeat and, well, determined. Like the powerful message AOPA President Craig Fuller gave on Veteran’s Day—the first day of the show—aviation isn’t down, and isn’t ready to give up. The theme of this year’s event may have been engagement, but the message was—and is—celebrating our freedom to fly.

That message’s most tangible victory was the unheralded support members from all over the country, not just those at the event, gave to the first-ever auction to benefit the AOPA Foundation. More than $250,000 was raised to help protect, preserve, and defend GA. On these pages you’ll see the fun and excitement of Summit; if you couldn’t join the more than 10,000 pilots and aviation enthusiasts in Long Beach, plan now for next year—AOPA Aviation Summit 2011 takes place in Hartford, Connecticut, September 22 through 24. And that’s just nine months away!

There was dancing in the streets of Long Beach, California, on the second day of AOPA’s annual three-day gathering of all things aviation—Aviation Summit 2010—and if area residents didn’t know we’d arrived, they did now. From the roar of Fifi’s radial engine as the famed B–29 landed for Airportfest at Long Beach Daugherty Field to the sound of the rock-and-roll tribute band on Pine Avenue in downtown Long Beach, aviators were in the mood to celebrate.

While the industry, like so much of the country, has been going through tough times, the mood at Summit wasn’t discouraging—in fact, it was upbeat and, well, determined. Like the powerful message AOPA President Craig Fuller gave on Veteran’s Day—the first day of the show—aviation isn’t down, and isn’t ready to give up. The theme of this year’s event may have been engagement, but the message was—and is—celebrating our freedom to fly.

That message’s most tangible victory was the unheralded support members from all over the country, not just those at the event, gave to the first-ever auction to benefit the AOPA Foundation. More than $250,000 was raised to help protect, preserve, and defend GA. On these pages you’ll see the fun and excitement of Summit; if you couldn’t join the more than 10,000 pilots and aviation enthusiasts in Long Beach, plan now for next year—AOPA Aviation Summit 2011 takes place in Hartford, Connecticut, September 22 through 24. And that’s just nine months away!