Area young people ages 8 to 17 will have a chance to take to the skies on September 24, as Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 29 hosts a Young Eagles Flight Rally at Willard Airport in conjunction with a Pancake Breakfast hosted by the Institute of Aviation at Parkland College.
The rally is part of the EAA Young Eagles Program, created to interest young people in aviation. Since the program was launched in 1992, Volunteer EAA pilots have flown more than 1.7 million young people who reside in more than 90 countries.
“Free airplane rides are just part of the Flight Rally,” said Dave Boyd, spokesman for the event. “We hope to build one-to-one relationships between pilots and young people, giving a new generation a chance to learn more about the possibilities that exist in the world of aviation.”
Pilots at the event will also explain more about their airplanes allowing young people to discover how airplanes work and how pilots ensure safety is the prime concern before every flight.
Following the flight, each young person will receive a certificate making them an official Young Eagle. Their name will then be entered into the “World’s Largest Logbook,” which is on permanent display at the EAA Air Adventure Museum in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The Logbook is also accessible on the Internet at www.youngeagles.org.
In addition to the certificate, the new Young Eagle will be given a logbook with an access code for a complete free online Flight Training course offered by Sporty’s Pilot Shop.
The Institute of Aviation at Parkland College (originally founded at the University of Illinois in 1946) offers flight training and an Associate of Science in Aviation that can easily be transferred to a four-year institution. Alumni fly for all major US airlines and for military, corporate, cargo, and charter organizations worldwide. More than 3,000 Institute of Aviation graduates have gone on to train other pilots as instructors.
Those attending the flight rally and breakfast on September 24 are asked come to Willard Airport in Savoy, Illinois, between 8 am and 2 pm to register for their free flight. Flights will begin at 8 am, with registration closing at 2 pm. All Young Eagles will be required to provide a parental consent form which will be available at the event. Breakfast will conclude at noon ($10 for adults, $5 for those 12 & under). Proceeds will go towards to supporting scholarships for Institute of Aviation students.
Additional information about EAA Chapter 29 and the Young Eagles Rally is available on Chapter 29’s website at www.29.eaachapter.org. More information on the international Young Eagles program can be found at www.youngeagles.org. More information on the Institute of Aviation can be found at www.aviation.parkland.edu.