This weekend, we were very pleased to attend AeroExpo at Sywell Aerodrome. As always, it was a great event showcasing the aviation industry with lots of like-minded aviators to meet and introduce to Aerobility. The Aerobility stand was very busy, manned with a large team of dedicated volunteers. We took our PA-28 G-BSYY to show the public the benefits of having a hand control, which generated a lot of interest from passers by.
|The Aerobility outside exhibition space|
Also on display this year was our new ballooning venture - we took along our specially designed balloon base complete with its newly made stand which allowed potential users to test out the accessibility of the seats. It also gave our volunteers somewhere to rest their weary legs! The balloon seats proved to be very popular and many people stopped to ask if there really wasn't a basket to go around them...
|Audrey, Nick, Mike, Pedro and Mary showing off Aerobility Ballooning|
A highlight of the exhibition, not just for Aerobility but for everyone that attended, were the amazing glider displays performed by gliderFX's Guy Westgate. As an Aerobility Ambassador Guy was a fantastic representative for the charity, drawing in lots of positive interest with his Aerobility branded Fox glider. When it wasn't busy displaying, Guy parked the Fox up next to G-BSYY and spent time demonstrating how to hoist someone into the front seat. Guy performed each day with the assistance of his tug pilot, Paul.
|Guy showing off the impressive display ability of the glider....|
|... as well as it's functional capability|
Guy also treated those that waited patiently on Saturday evening to a breathtaking display at dusk, complete with pyrotechnics and LED lighting. The display reduced the crowd to complete silence, and with no background noise to compete with the swooping and swishing sounds of the glider as it twisted and turned through the air had a magical effect.
|The display was a highlight for all that saw it.|
|Guy challenges the limits with every display, an attitude consistent with Aerobility's own. |
AeroExpo was also a great chance for us to catch up with old friends and update them on all of our activity. It also saw the return of our much-loved Aerobility mascot, Wilbur, who wasted no time in going round to let everyone know that he was back. A hit with the kids and adults a like, Wilbur managed to get himself snapped with anyone who is anyone!
|Wilbur with the Pooleys gang.|
|Stopping to catch up with the latest news...|
|With our friend Dean from Nicholson MacLaren|
|And he even managed to catch our Chief Executive, Mike Miller-Smith!|
We were also very pleased to see our friends from Haywards Aviation Ltd, who are a great support for Aerobility. Hazel was busy selling raffle tickets and Matthew made sure that entry onto their big red bus was subject to a few pennies in the box for Aerobility.
|Mike with Haywards Aviation Ltd.|
One of the big success stories of the weekend was the launch of the 2013 Aerobility Raffle. We were busy selling tickets all weekend, with a big push on Saturday evening when everyone was happily fed and watered in the sunshine! The hard work of all of our volunteers, as well as from the Haywards team and even a few visitors who lent a hand, saw us sell over 1000 tickets. Not a bad start at all! The raffle is running until the 1st September, when we will be drawing the winning tickets at the LAA Rally, which is also held at Sywell. With first prize being a private lunch or dinner with Buzz Aldrin, this is not a raffle to miss. For more information, have a look at the website... http://www.aerobility.com/raffle/raffle-2013.php
So that's it for this year - we're already excited for AeroExpo 2014........