October 31, 2012
By Thomas B Haines
Nearly 100 business aviation airplanes clustered on 25 acres of pavement at Orlando Executive Airport this week for the sixty-fifth annual National Business Aviation Association Convention. Showalter Flying Services hosted the display next to its fixed-base operation. The aircraft display is in conjunction with the convention itself, located at the nearby Orange County Convention Center.
Based on square footage of exhibit space, the show is the fifth largest trade show in the country. At the airport, the aircraft on display range from single-engine piston airplanes all the way through the largest business jets. Showalter "borrows" employees from other FBOs to pull off the massive display, which requires some 100 staff to support—more than three times the number usually on staff at the business.
Photo by Bob Showalter
AOPA Editor in Chief Tom Haines joined AOPA in 1988. He owns and flies a Beechcraft A36 Bonanza. Since soloing at 16 and earning a private pilot certificate at 17, he has flown more than 100 models of general aviation airplanes.
AOPA expressed concern in a meeting with town officials from East Hampton, New York, that restrictions proposed to curb airport noise “overwhelmingly” generated by transient commercial flights would unfairly burden traditional airport users.
The FAA on Feb. 23 issued a special airworthiness information bulletin recommending preflight inspection of Robinson R44 and R44 II main rotors.
New legislation in both houses of Congress would allow thousands of pilots to fly without a third class medical and offer new protections for GA pilots.
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