Kirk Fjetland, President of Chapter 237 sent me this and I wanted to share with other chapters. We were just out there visiting and from what I understand, their chapter was struggling...and is now growing! keep up the good work Kirk and Chapter 237 in Blaine, Minnesota!
The Spirit of Aviation is alive and well in Chapter 237!
Our mission is very simple: to grow participation in aviation. We do this by inspiring and helping people to fly, build, restore, outreach, and volunteer. In other words, to actively participate in whatever part of aviation one chooses. Chapter 237 is a critical part and often the social center of the local aviation community and, through our Young Eagle rally efforts, we are the inspiration to the next generation of aviators.
Homebuilding is an integral part of our existence and has changed dramatically in the past few decades with the emergence of outstanding aircraft such as Rutan designs, RVs, Zeniths, Sonexes, and others that offer previously unheard of value in features, performance, and price. Our members are even building non-conventional aircraft, such as Al Eke’s “Little Dipper”, Dean Nelson’s Stinson 108, and Rick Hoch’s BD-5. Many other projects are under consideration. Of course, don’t forget the excellent job our members did building the pedal planes! The vast array of experience and knowledge of our Technical Advisors (i.e. Gary Specketer) and Chapter 237’s members with building aircraft is second to none and is available to assist builders, restorers, and aviators in their journey to achieve their dreams. Through our website, newsletter and Facebook page we will now be expanding our coverage and highlighting our member’s building efforts and experimental amateur-built (E-AB) aircraft in a manner that represents their excitement, ingenuity, and stories.
The explosion of popularity for building aircraft has created many new industry issues around the 51 percent rule, safety, and operating parameters that require new thinking, and advocacy efforts to ensure our freedoms to design, build, restore, and fly these wonderful aircraft. EAA has our back! There are also several key areas EAA has invested in our future including flying clubs
(prototype launched this spring), Eagle Flights (first flight experiences for adults), and a digital media strategy that modernizes EAA’s visual and digital properties, including their website and downloadable apps. The EAA assistance and resources we have access to are comprehensive and endless.
Chapter 237’s can-do attitude and culture of high standards and family values will guide us forward as they have for the past 50 years. Our future is bright and exciting with many new upcoming events, informative programs and aircraft being built. We are also expanding and developing relationships with other Chapters and organizations such as the Minnesota Ninety-Nines. When all is said and done, the most important goal of EAA and Chapter 237 is for our members to have AVIATION FUN!
I would enjoy hearing your thoughts, comments and suggestions regarding the future of aviation and EAA Chapter 237.
Kirk E. Fjetland, USN (Ret.)
President - Chapter 237