From the heads of government agencies to the chiefs of aircraft manufacturing companies, you’ll be in rare company at AOPA Aviation Summit. AOPA is bringing all of the movers and shakers in the industry to Summit so that you can hear about the future of GA: What’s up on the security front? Where do we stand on alternative fuels research? How are GA groups uniting to protect our freedom to fly? Do flight sims really lower the cost of flying and improve safety?
AOPA President Craig Fuller will kick off Summit with the presidents of several GA organizations during the “One Voice” Summit Session in the Tampa Convention Center ballroom at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 5. Then at 9:50 a.m., AOPA Editor in Chief Tom Haines will gather the leaders in the manufacturing industry for a look at synthetic vision, enhanced vision, automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast, autoland, and digital parachutes.
At noon on Nov. 5, gather at Center Stage in the exhibit hall for a GA Serves America Rally to show your support for the industry, and hear FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt talk about the future of GA at 2:30 p.m.
After a full-throttle takeoff on Nov. 5, Summit will soar through the flight levels for the next two days with TSA Assistant Administrator John Sammon, Federal Air Surgeon Dr. Fred Tilton, celebrity Montel Williams, and fitness guru Mike Torchia.
The exhibit hall, filled with hundreds of booths for pilot gear and aircraft accessories, will showcase the hands-on side of Summit with the unveiling of AOPA’s 2010 Sweepstakes airplane. Plus, a dedicated controllers’ corner of the hall will give you the opportunity to talk directly with the folks guiding you through controlled airspace, and a health pavilion will allow you to check your cholesterol, glucose, blood pressure, and more.
Nearly 100 aircraft, including vintage airplanes, AOPA’s 2009 Sweepstakes Cirrus SR22, light sport aircraft, a Coast Guard helicopter, and business jets, will be on display during Airportfest at Peter O. Knight Airport. Special $70 discovery flights (in honor of AOPA’s seventieth anniversary) will be offered for those who have never experienced the joy of flying, along with sim time in the Learn to Fly Center at the airport.
The AOPA Air Safety Foundation’s popular safety seminars, including “What Went Wrong?” in which pilots work together to dissect accident chains, will be offered during Summit in the convention center. In addition to safety seminars, forums about aviation security, surviving an accident, aircraft ownership, and more will offer you a chance to expand your knowledge base and impart some of your wisdom during the open discussions.
During the evenings, AOPA will offer special social events, including a Meet & Mingle in the exhibit hall on Nov. 5; a night at the Florida Aquarium and John Oates “Freedom to Fly Concert” with opening act Blaine Larsen on Nov. 6; and a celebration of AOPA’s 70 years on Nov. 7.