EAA President Tom Poberezny
and AOPA President Phil Boyer
AOPA today congratulated the Experimental Aircraft Association for reaching its goal of flying one million Young Eagles.
"EAA's Young Eagles program is an extraordinary effort to get our nation's youth excited about aviation," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "We commend EAA and all the pilots who have committed their time and aircraft to inspiring the next generation of pilots."
"This is also a great example of how the efforts of EAA and AOPA can complement each other. With such a great program directed at youth, AOPA doesn't have to duplicate that effort, allowing us to focus on other outreach efforts such as GAservingAmerica.org and Be A Pilot," Boyer said.
EAA created the Young Eagles program in 1992 to introduce aviation to young people. The goal was to fly one million kids by December 17, 2003, the 100th anniversary of powered flight. Pilots volunteer to take kids flying, starting with a preflight check, focusing on how the airplane works and how pilots prepare to fly safely. Then they take a brief flight, and the young person receives a certificate signed by the pilot and Gen. Chuck Yeager.
More than 34,000 pilots have participated in Young Eagles flights, taking off from every continent except Antarctica. Young Eagle flights have flown from every public-use airport in the Unitrd States, along with many private strips as well. Flights have staged from AOPA's ramp at Frederick Municipal Airport, with AOPA President Boyer and other AOPA staffers and members flying Young Eagles.
"Having personally participated in the Young Eagles program with my Cessna 172, I know how rewarding it is for the kids, the parents, and the pilot," said Boyer.
EAA will continue Young Eagles after December 17. For more information, visit the Web site.