On Saturday, June 4, the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) will host its 15th Annual Fly-In and Open House. AOPA members and the general public are invited to attend what has become the nation's largest one-day fly-in event. The AOPA Commander Countdown Sweepstakes grand prize, a Commander 112A, will be among hundreds of aircraft on display. One lucky AOPA member will win the sweepstakes aircraft early next year.
"Since purchasing the Commander in January, it has been through enormous changes," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "A new glass cockpit, new paint, refurbished interior, a new engine, and a three-blade propeller are just a few of the improvements that the new owner will enjoy."
The aircraft's all-glass instrument panel is equipped with the latest in autopilot and communication equipment, including a Chelton FlightLogic electronic flight instrument system (EFIS) with its primary flight display (PFD) and multifunction display (MFD). The Chelton system uses "highway in the sky" technology to guide the pilot safely en route. A digital autopilot is included to help reduce pilot workload. The panel even has a Sirius satellite radio, a Ryan International 9900BX Traffic Advisory System, and a JP Instruments EDM-800 engine monitor.
For weather information, Nexrad radar graphics are delivered to the cockpit via satellite datalink. This system displays METARs and TAFs for airports along the intended flight route. Cloud tops are also noted, which helps you decide how high to climb to stay out of those icy or turbulent clouds. It all provides a level of safety that's becoming the standard in advanced general aviation airplanes.
Just in time for Fly-In, the Commander will have some brand-new touches added to the interior, including laying color-coordinated fabric over a portion of the headliner, adding some detail sewing in the door panels, upgrading the existing carpet, and incorporating new door handles.
The aircraft will be parked on the AOPA ramp, with staff members on hand to answer questions about the aircraft's many modifications and improvements.
The 15th Annual AOPA Fly-In and Open House starts at 8:30 a.m. and runs until 5 p.m. Admission and parking are free. A wide selection of beverages, light snacks, and meals will be available throughout the day from vendors.
The Frederick Municipal Airport is located off of Exit 56 (East Patrick Street) from Interstate 70. Traveling from Washington, D.C., take Interstate 270 North to I-70 East, then Exit 56. From Baltimore, Md., take I-70 West to Exit 56. From Loudoun County, Va., take Route 15 from Leesburg (joins Route 340 from Charles Town, W.Va.). Take Route 340 to I-70 just outside of Frederick. At the I-70/I-270 split stay left to continue on I-70 and take Exit 56. From Harrisburg/Gettysburg, Pa., take Route 15 South to I-70 East and take Exit 56. From Johnstown, Pa., and points west, take I-70 East to Exit 56.
For more information, including the schedule of seminars, list of exhibitors, and aircraft arrival instructions, visit AOPA's Web site.
With more than 404,000 members, AOPA is the world's largest civil aviation association, working to protect the interests of general aviation. Nearly two-thirds of all U.S. pilots are members of AOPA.
May 31, 2005