Live the Dream
Deaf pilot spreads the word: You can fly
Greg Lawrence’s aviation career, logging 3,000 hours over the course of nearly a half century, would be relatively unremarkable by general aviation standards, but for one thing. “I’m deaf,” explained Lawrence, 63, whose hearing loss dates to an early childhood illness.
Taught to speak by his grandmother, Lawrence retains partial hearing—enough to understand air traffic controllers more often than not. Able to speak clearly, and read lips, Lawrence’s hearing loss was unknown to his teachers until eighth grade. In 1964, with dreams of taking to the skies, he applied for a medical certificate. Not knowing what to disclose when it came to “deficiencies,” Lawrence said, the aviation medical examiner advised him “not to make trouble” for himself, and signed him off. He earned his private pilot certificate in 1966. Read More >>
AOPA launches student pilot support tool
Students have a powerful new tool available to help them track the progress of their flight training with AOPA’s new MyFlightTraining website. MyFlightTraining takes the content of Flight Training magazine and personalizes it for students anywhere in the flight training curriculum.
The site is based on the feedback AOPA received in its research about the ideal flight training experience. That report found that students have an overwhelming desire for information about the overall flight training process, access to ongoing resources, and a sense of community, among other things. MyFlightTraining addresses these points with a variety of features. MyFlightTraining is completely free and open to any student pilot. Read More >>
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Aircraft of the Month
Aviat Pitts S-2B
The Pitts S-2B, a favorite of many aerobatic pilots, is a fun two-seat, bi-wing, single-engine airplane. The S-2B was designed by Herb Anderson, chief engineer of Pitts Aerobatics (now the Aviat Aircraft plant), in the early 1980s. Approximately 200 S-2B models have been built. The airplane is not currently in production, but is supported by Aviat Aircraft in Afton, Wyo. The Pitts is certified for unlimited aerobatics and has an exhilarating vertical climb rate of 2,700 feet per minute, or the equivalent of going straight up at 30 mph.
Ask a Pilot
As I read through many of my flight training resources, I often come across the term general aviation. What is general aviation?
Answer: General aviation, or GA for short, describes all civilian flying except scheduled passenger airline service. Examples of GA flights are as diverse as flying for a weekend visit back home to delivering overnight packages; as different as emergency medical evacuation to a morning sightseeing flight in a hot-air balloon; as utilitarian as aerial application to keep crops healthy to helicopter traffic reports to keep drivers informed of rush-hour delays. GA benefits the community in so many ways it’s hard to cover them all. An estimated 65 percent of general aviation flights are conducted for business and public services that need transportation to be more flexible than the airlines can offer. More than 90 percent of the roughly 220,000 civil aircraft registered in the United States are general aviation airplanes, and of the nation’s 600,000 pilots, an estimated 500,000 or more fly general aviation airplanes.
Do you have a question about flying? Ask a pilot! Call 800/872-2672 or send an e-mail.
In the Blogs
Here are some recent posts from our Let's Go Flying blogs.
Tripping over air
By Kristen Seaman
My first official lesson with my new flight instructor was on Tuesday, January 24th. We flew at sunset, and all of those inspirational quotes about flying came rushing to me as I took in the beautiful scenery around us. You know the ones I’m talking about: “For once you have tasted flight, you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return. – Leonardo da Vinci;
“Kristen can trip over air.” – My mother
Oh wait, that last one’s not about flying. But it’s a pretty good descriptor of how I operate on the ground. Read more >>
Mrs. Alaska U.S. All World Beauties takes flight with GirlsFlyToo platform
By Ariel Talen-Keller
My name is Ariel Talen-Keller and I am the reigning Mrs. Alaska U.S. All World Beauties pageant winner. My platform is called ‘GirlsFlyToo’ – a project to encourage and educate women to be a part of aviation. I grew up on an airfield and my parents are pilots. My father is one of the few people in the nation that restores antique airplanes for a living. His passion and love for aviation inspired me to share that same passion. I attended flight school after college and as a pilot myself, I understand the importance of teaching and encouraging our youth to get involved in aviation. Read more >>
Aviation Calendar of Events
Airports all across the United States offer weekend activities, from pancake breakfasts and barbecues to car and air shows. Find out what's going on in your area. You can search by city, state, or geographic region.
Women of Aviation Worldwide Week
During the week of Mar. 5 through 11, a record number of women from across the globe will be taking to the skies for Women of Aviation Worldwide Week. Many pilots (both male and female) will be introducing women to the joy of flying, as well as hosting aviation events for their community. Everyone is invited to participate and share the excitement of aviation. Learn more >>
38th Annual Sun 'n Fun Fly-in & Expo
Sun ’n Fun Fly-in, one of the world's premier events for recreational aviation enthusiasts, will be held from Mar. 27 to Apr. 1 at Lakeland Linder Regional Airport in Lakeland, Fla. The event offers more than 450 educational forums, seminars, and hands-on workshops, as well as more than 500 commercial exhibitors offering aviation products and services. The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds will perform on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. For additional information and advance ticket purchase, visit the Sun 'n Fun Fly-In website.
Pilots love to take photos, and they love to share them with other pilots. Now you can upload your flying photos to our online gallery, “Air Mail.” Share your special aviation images, or view and rate more than 7,000 photos (and growing). Photos are put into rotation on the AOPA home page!