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Thread: Young eagles rally with too many kids to fly suggestions?

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jan 2017
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    Young eagles rally with too many kids to fly suggestions?

    Our chapter has a young eagles rally tomorrow and I'm growing concerned we may have more kids show up than we can fly. We have 10 pilots/airplanes which I'm very happy about. Vouchers to fly another time puts a burden on the pilots to schedule. The big problem is how to fix the broken hearts of the aspiring pilots that thought they were going to go flying that day. Could be 250-300 young eagles showing up.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Where are you that you get that many kids? I guess it should be in the order of sign up to be fair. Safety is the vital part and I dont think I could do more than about 8 flghts a day at peak alertness.I once did 7 in hot june weather and was really having to work to concntrate the last one. Please dont cut short any safetly items like loading with engines running to save time.
    Last edited by Bill Greenwood; 09-22-2017 at 06:27 PM.

  3. #3

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    Jan 2017
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    Rochester minnesota. I used a public event post on facebook.

  4. #4
    rwanttaja's Avatar
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    Seattle
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    Anybody have any good suggestions on how to prevent this sort of thing in the future? A reservation system would work, but would probably get awkward trying to implement. If you could get the cooperation of a business at the airport, you could leave vouchers and have people pick them up the week before.

    Last YE event I ran was ~20 years ago, and I remember my fears that we had more kids waiting that I could finagle rides for. IIRC, about noon I was telling new arrivals that they wouldn't get to fly.

    Edit: Probably, at minimum, any advertising should include something along the lines of, "Limited to the first XX kids."

    Ron Wanttaja
    Last edited by rwanttaja; 09-23-2017 at 09:45 AM.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by rwanttaja View Post
    Anybody have any good suggestions on how to prevent this sort of thing in the future?

    Ron Wanttaja
    Ya, never post an event on Facebook that you know has finite participation. You're just asking for a turn out that will be a fiasco. Totally unmanageable and the parents and kids are going to be left with a bad taste about GA.

    I'd implement the concert type model. Announce that this is a wristband event. The first xx to show up at a specific xx location at xx time and day will receive wriistbands that guarantees holders to flights on the day of the YE event.

  6. #6

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    Chicago
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    A low cost solution that does cost a little 'hassle' equity, one chapter member becomes the "Box Office" for the event.

    Make up a simple reservation sheet for each airplane/pilot with time slots for each flight they feel they can make. The Box Office, over the phone, takes reservations and fills in the time slots for all the planes. At the bottom of each sheet allow for one or two (or more?) "standby Eagles" who can take the slot from any Eagle who doesn't show up/last minute cancels. Require arrival of the Eagle at least an hour before their flight slot.

    The standby youths can show up as early as they want (and there's probably some way to keep them amused) and they wait for an opening. If ALL the Eagles show up on time and on target? It shouldn't be impossible to get rides for the few standbys remaining.

    The only way to avoid offering more rides than you can provide is by restricting participation.

    Standby status is used for a lot of venues from airlines, to motorcycle safety classes to true Box Offices for sold out events, concerts etc.

    Just my thunk on a steamy Chicago Saturday evening.

  7. #7

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    Jan 2017
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    I'm happy to report that our event was a success. We flew 140 young eagles in a 3.5 hour session. Three single passenger airplanes and seven 3 passenger. Our event start time was 8:30, we had a few before 8:30 and we stopped accepting registrations at 9:30 with 145 young eagles to fly. 5 registrations did not fly. We turned away about 6 registrations after 9:30. I failed to update the facebook event until 10am.

    Some things we will consider for the next rally:
    -Facebook advertisement worked extremely well for us. We essentially had the ability to text 300+ people that showed an interest in the event that we were no longer accepting application for additional rides after 1.5 hours of start time. We do not have a way to determine how many more would have shown up. I'm not really interested in posting a question on the event asking how many people we disappointed.
    -We agree with the tip to include how many rides are available in the event information. This is a bit tricky because we did not want a crowd forming 2 hours before start time and the concrete number of airplanes flying (maintenance, pilots, wind/weather...) is not know until we start.
    -We needed more ground seating. Especially benches that at least the next 25 young eagles could slide down as the line moved. We had folding chairs.
    -As the young eagles arrived we assigned a sequential number, first come, first flown. We wrote the number on the registration form which the young eagles kept until their flight and this was used to seat the kids in order. This was pain point- it was hard to see the numbers.
    -Next rally we are going to print name tags with just a sequential number and then hand write 1 of X on the tag. This will indicate that the group wants to fly together. Knowing who was a solo with a 1 of 1 would really help fill in the groups of three and the single passenger airplanes.
    -Facebook event updates with 'helpful tips' worked great to advertise the event and provide needed information. We added new pictures about once a week as well. This kept the 'share event' process constantly moving as well.
    -We will consider two lines for the next rally. Next 20 to fly and 20-40 would get a walk around tutorial on airplanes and the joy of flight. We had two static airplanes that I believe a number of parents and young eagles took advantage of.
    -A limit of 6 to 7 flights for each pilot was our intention. All of the pilots we eager to do more flights at the end of the rally.
    -Our event success was absolutely a result of all the volunteers coming to the event with an open mind and a 'what do you think?' attitude versus 'we need to do it this way' or 'we did it like this in the past'.
    Last edited by jowens; 09-24-2017 at 07:10 AM.

  8. #8

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    Wachapreague Va.
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    Glad to hear it worked out well. Great events I flew Young Eagles yesterday and we had fun. The smiles make i worth it !.

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