October 5, 2012
By Benét J. Wilson
As thousands of general aviation pilots and enthusiasts prepare to depart for Palm Springs, Calif., to attend AOPA Aviation Summit, attendees can look forward to seeing dozens of aircraft on display at Airportfest, more than 400 booths in the convention center exhibit hall, and nearly 100 hours of seminars offered over three days.
“Whether you’re an aircraft owner, a pilot who rents, or an aviation enthusiast, the Aviation Summit has something to offer, from the exhibits in the hall and at the airport, to the seminars and social events. You can also get answers to your aviation questions, explore all that our industry has to offer, and discover new ways to get the most out of your flying,” said AOPA President Craig Fuller.
For those arriving early, Summit kicks off on Oct. 10 at 10 a.m. with the Parade of Planes, where dozens of aircraft taxi under their own power from Palm Springs International Airport to the Palm Springs Convention Center. Airportfest, outside the convention center, will have dozens of aircraft on display, ranging from light sport aircraft to business jets.
On Oct. 11, attendees can look forward to a keynote address featuring AOPA Pilot Editor in Chief Tom Haines, Senior Editor Dave Hirschman, and Editor At Large Tom Horne in a discussion with Fuller on their recent around the world adventures. The keynote will also feature the inspiring story of Adam Kisielewski, a wounded war veteran and LSA pilot.
Thursday evening, the AOPA Foundation will host the A Night for Flight benefit gala and charity online auction, featuring actor, pilot, and general aviation advocate Harrison Ford, who has donated a lunch and flight on his aircraft. All proceeds will benefit the AOPA Foundation.
On Oct. 12, Ford will participate in a keynote address on the importance of general aviation to the United States. It will also feature FAA Acting Administrator Michael Huerta, who will share his vision for GA's future. Fuller and Haines will join Flying magazine Editor in Chief Robert Goyer to debate the pros and cons of the presidential candidates and other issues facing GA.
“Attendees will have access to plenty of activities in a great location at the AOPA Aviation Summit this year,” said Fuller. “As always we’re looking forward to seeing our members face-to-face and providing them with the tools they need to exercise the freedom to fly.”
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