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Pilots flock to First Flight and the AOPA Pilot Facility during aviation's centennialPilots flock to First Flight and the AOPA Pilot Facility during aviation's centennial

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Dan Collier, AOPA 4036890, wearing the
AOPA Centennial of Flight bomber jacket he
won, in front of First Flight Pilot Facility.

Hundreds of pilots have made the pilgrimage to First Flight Airport (FFA) at Kill Devil Hills, N.C., in the two months since the AOPA-sponsored Pilot Facility opened there.

Among those who made the trip earlier this month was AOPA member Dan Collier. It was his second trip this year. He attended the grand opening ceremony for the Pilot Facility on May 10 and won the drawing for a leather Centennial of Flight bomber jacket.

"It was the first day that work schedule, airplane availability, and weather all lined up to allow a cross-country to First Flight," said the Virginia native. "It's a trip worth taking. And thank you, AOPA, for the new Pilot Facility."

"For pilots, there's something mythical about landing at Kill Devil Hills, especially during this centennial year," said AOPA Vice President of Aviation Services Woody Cahall. "During a recent trip down there, I saw some 700 aircraft entered in the registry. And not everyone registers."

The Pilot Facility houses state-of-the-art flight planning and weather briefing computers, as well as phone lines to be able to talk to a flight service station briefer or file a flight plan, and (perhaps most important to passengers) modern restrooms.

"When the anniversary celebrations are over and done, only the Pilot Facility will remain," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "That's exactly the kind of legacy AOPA was hoping for: something useful and something that will serve pilots for a long time to come."

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