Saturday, March 8, 2014

15 women begin to learn how to fly at Lyncrest with Harvs Air and Winnipeg Aviation, RAA, 99s and SFC

Fifteen women, many of whom have dreamed of knowing how to fly since they were young; as Jenny Y said "I've always played the 'learning how to fly' Super Hero and would love to truly learn to fly." The gals  braved the -24C temperatures plus wind chill to begin learning how to fly today at Lyncrest Airport. The MB Chapter of the 99s, International Association of Women Pilots and the Recreational Aircraft Association (RAA) invited women serious about learning how to fly to an all day Ground School. See links.  for more photos and links.

Today, beginning with  Rachelle Regnier handing out terms related to the Theory of Flight and Flight Control and ending with Bert Elam and Donna Prowse encouraging women to drop in to the RAA to sit in C150 C-FLUG - to get comfortable in the cockpit, to practise the Check List, to begin to develop muscle memory needed to fly.

Pilots and Pilots in Training introduced participants to how we do a "walk around" on a variety of aircraft. Marissa Laing and Betty-Ann MacPhedran introduced the group to doing a walk around for a Land Africa and an Acrosport Biplane; Emily Reid and Jenna Johanson taught the walk around for C150 C-FLUG and a Colt; Tara Ursel, Rachelle, Donna, and Lindsay Kitson led the small groups from one hangar to the next, chatting about flying on the way.

Captain Dan Reeves, Owner and Chief Flight Instructor at Winnipeg Aviation at St Andrews Airport, Tom Kresnyak, Instructor and Nav Canada Air Traffic Controller, Adam Penner Manager and Chief Flight Instructor at Harv's Air in Steinbach and St Andrews Airport, with his daughter Megan, answered questions throughout the day.

Burt Barkman kindly opened up his aviation museum filled with fascinating artifacts and stories. Jim Goold, Ken Podaima,Vic Prefontaine, Bowen Prowse, George Inman and other SFC pilots helped the participants answer their quiz questions. John Grodzki welcomed the gals into his hangar to learn about his Piper Tomahawk; John Woods invited gals to see his C172; and other pilots made similar offers but we unfortunately ran out of time. Rick Riewe, Walli Marzhoff, and Jay Ladouceur kindly volunteered to take photos. Bowen handed out the quiz prizes and Jill coordinated the event.

Adam and Megan Penner flew in with Harv's Air's Super Cub on skis and offered complimentary introductory to three lucky gals...they haven't stopped talking about it and are still grinning from ear to ear. Arel, Krista, and Sandy are looking forward to being able to fly Harv's Air's tail dragger next year.

Cold temperatures, high winds, and three heavy snow falls over the last three days made it a challenge for SFC pilots to get their planes out of the hangars. Murray Bryson, Jim Goold, Peter Moodie and Dale Chevalier plowed some of the taxiways, parking lots, driveways. Gilles Frichette said "when I read your email inviting guys to open up our hangars, I figured I really better get out to the airport and stop putting it off any longer." About 12 Springfield Flying Club members were out getting their planes ready for flying now that the wx has warmed up a little from the months of -30C or colder!  

The event concluded at the RAA building with the Participants teaching the Pilots how to do a walk around based on the information they had learned earlier in the day.

THANK YOU to all the Participants and Volunteers - YOU made this event a terrific success...and have set MB well on its way to increasing the number of women in aviation...soon that dismal statistic of only 6% women in the recreational and commercial aviation industry will be a thing of the past thanks to the incredible support from the men enthusiastically welcoming women into the field.

The following photos were taken by Rick Riewe, Wallie and Jay's photos will be posted shortly.

What's Next
For women who are seriously making their dream to fly a reality, we're hosting a 5-evening ground school Tuesday April 8th,
Thursday April 10th,
Saturday April 12th,
Monday April 14th and
Wednesday April 16th from 6:30 to 8:30 pm.
Certified Instructors from the local flight schools will be instructing this course, including Tom Kresnyak and other Instructors interested in volunteering.

Hours enrolled in this ground school can count towards your Private Pilots Licence training, in addition, these hours will definitely increase your level of understanding of the material, thereby reducing time and money it takes to cover the material needed to get your licence.

The Instructors are donating their time to the Ninety-Nines, International Association of Women Pilots and the Recreational Aircraft Association to show their commitment and support for this important initiative.

Space is limited so participants who begin booking flight lessons from any of the Flight Schools eg Brandon Flying School, Mountain Flying School (Morden), Gimli Flight Centre, Harv's Air (Steinbach or St Andrews Airport) and Winnipeg Aviation (St Andrews Airport) will be given priority.

To register, contact and feel free to pass this invitation on to other women who are interested in learning how to fly.

Cost of flight training is about $6000-7000, payable as you go; women who take this Free Ground School will be invited to:
1. Fly with Springfield Flying Club pilots (non-Instructors) for as many hours as you like, and
2. Sit in C150 C-FLUG to practise your check lists, procedures, walk-arounds, and get totally familiar with the aircraft.
3. Set up study partners or study groups with other gals who have recently finished their licences or are keen to study with you.
4. Borrow the flight training manuals while you prepare for your flight exam
5. Other support

These opportunities for an enriched flight training program will increase your understanding of the material, thereby reducing the cost of instruction and number of hours required to attain your licence.


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