Tag Archives: RSC

Bill Rusk AK Presentation

If you are looking for a way to spend a little over an hour watching beautiful scenery, please hit this link, turn up the volume, sit back and relax!

Steve Johnson, at Supercub.org, arranged for Bill to give a presentation to us via Zoom video last Wednesday evening and it was recorded.

Bill Rusk, who has spoken at our Great MN Aviation Gathering in the past, is a Captain at Southwest Airlines. He built a beautiful Javron Super Cub, put it on floats (as a matter of fact, his airplane is featured on the cover of Midwest Flyer magazine this quarter…photo taken by MN Pilots Assn member Brad Thornberg), and over the course of 4 years has visited most parts of Alaska. You will see many things, including the monument to Will Rogers and Wiley Post near Barrow, AK, where they met their demise. Bill documents not only the beauty of Alaska, but also the beauty of friendships that can be made through aviation.

Bill will be speaking at the 2021 GMAG, sharing not only his experiences flying in AK but also the flight planning that we might consider if we make this trip.

I hope you will enjoy this!

Why We Moved the GMAG to May in Future Years

Some of our members have asked why the decision was made to move the Great Minnesota Aviation Gathering (GMAG) annually to mid-May. In response please accept this as a description of our reasons for making this move.

Before the first GMAG, in 2014, the MN Seaplane Pilots Association’s Safety Seminar was the only viable outlet for pilots to get together in MN and enjoy each other’s company. The leadership of the Seaplane Safety Seminar was successful in covering topics regarding safety not only for seaplane operations, but also for land ops. We were aware that a significant proportion of those who attended that event were not float plane pilots, nor rated for seaplanes. We understand that this was precisely why the MNDOT Aeronautics chose to be a major proponent of the Safety Seminar, as well as a major contributor to keeping the event afloat, even as attendance dwindled.

We did our best to give that event, as well as other major aviation events, a wide berth. We wanted to maximize the ability for a person to take in many events, and to that end we began by holding the first GMAG in March. We gradually moved the event later and later in an effort to gain better weather in which to hold “tent” venues for the presentations. You may recall how distracting and cold the tents could be, but you came despite the challenges posed by weather.

It has been gratifying to see the numbers of attendees grow and stabilize at the GMAGs. We have several hundred people attend the GMAGs, and we feel that the move from the Anoka County-Blaine airport (KANE) to the Buffalo Municipal Airport has been a positive one. At the same time we have watched the attendance of pilots at the Seaplane Safety Seminar decrease, then more recently stabilize. It remains a great event, however, and we appreciate that fact. We think we cannot have too many aviation events that emphasize safety and offer the chance to visit with other pilots.

There are seaplane pilots who attend the GMAG, and “wheel” pilots who attend the Seaplane Safety Seminar, and some that attend both! We are really happy to see that “cross pollination”! Given the relative numbers of pilots in each group, however, we feel that the time has come to try to be inclusive of both populations at the GMAG so as to benefit all of aviation in Minnesota. We will continue to have presentations regarding seaplane operations at the GMAG.

We have discussed the change in dates with the leadership of the MNDOT Aeronautics and our Sponsors and have been assured that they will not only continue to support the GMAG but also expand their participation in our event, providing the same services and benefits that they have given to the MN Seaplane Pilots Association for several years.

Taken together, we feel that holding the GMAG’s annually on the weekend after Mother’s Day/Fishing Opener in Minnesota will provide many benefits to pilots in Minnesota. There will be some years in which the dates may coincide with the Seaplane Safety Seminar, but we feel the benefits far outweigh the downside for the majority of Minnesota pilots.

2020 GMAG Cancelled

It is with regret that the Board of Directors of the Minnesota Pilots Association has decided to cancel the 2020 Great Minnesota Aviation Gathering.

We have followed the COVID-19 (Corona virus) situation closely, as we are sure you have, as well.  The precautions that have been put in place by State and Federal officials have significantly reduced our ability to celebrate aviation in Minnesota as we have for each of the past 6 years.  Many of our sponsors, exhibitors and speakers have taken the position of withdrawing from participating on the dates we have planned.  We have explored the possibility of postponing the event but, with the uncertainty with regard to lifting of restrictions, it makes it difficult to establish another date.

We will be initiating refunds to all sponsors, exhibitors and advertisers within the next few days.  We join together to thank them for their support of the GMAG and the Minnesota Pilots Association.

We will be announcing recipients of the scholarship awards in the near future, as well as recognizing the individual and EAA chapter who have given the most Young Eagle rides in 2019.

We encourage you to continue to support and attend the Minnesota Seaplane Pilots Association Safety Seminar, which is scheduled to be held at Madden’s Resort on May 15-17, 2020.  Please follow their website at www.mnseaplanes.com for updates on their event.  We truly hope that restrictions will be lifted by the time of their event.

We thank you for your support and look forward to the 2021 Great Minnesota Aviation Gathering.

Randy Corfman
President, Minnesota Pilots Association

2020 GMAG!

We are delighted to announce that the 2020 Great Minnesota Aviation Gathering will again be held at the Buffalo Municipal airport (KCFE) on Friday and Saturday, April 24-25, 2020!

Please mark these dates down on your calendar.  We hope to see you there!

Randy Corfman
President, MN Pilots Assn

KBFW

We have been made aware of the closure of KBFW, the Silver Bay MN Municipal Airport. I have reached out to MN DOT Aeronautics to find out more about the action, but would appreciate learning anything you might have to share to provide insight into what is going on there.  Please email me at info@mnpilots.org.

We can’t afford to lose any airports in Minnesota, and any help you can offer will be appreciated.  Thank you!

Message from Jay FAAST

Here are some links that you may find useful…they are the most frequently requested!

Aircraft Security Agreement

Affidavit of Ownership Light-Sport Aircraft Manufacturer’s

Affidavit of Ownership for Amateur-Built and Other Non-type Certificated Aircraft

Certificate of Repossession of Encumbered Aircraft

Aircraft Bill of Sale

Aircraft Registration Renewal Application

Aircraft Registration Application

Thanks to Jay Flowers from the ND FAAST for this information!

Randy Corfman

 

 

Kurt Pennuto, our RAF State Laison, sent me this summary of the events at the Bowstring Airfield meeting last Wednesday. Apparently approximately 20 aircraft flew in. I think this helps demonstrate the influence we can have on issues such as this. Our challenge now is to keep on using these airfields, and not simply let the airport go unused.

This summary is from our very own Jeff Russell (the Wisconsin version)…
I flew up to Bowstring airport in northern Minnesota yesterday to support Kurt Pennuto in representing the RAF. It is really a beautiful airport in a great location. It’s in the heart of the Minnesota northwoods and lakes area that is truly a special place. Kurt did a great job identifying this strip as one with high recreational value and one that the RAF should be involved with. 

The Bowstring airport was rumored to be under threat of closure. Yesterday’s meeting included Itasca county commissioners, airport commissioners, Mn-DOT, and about 45 or so interested pilots and citizens.

The meeting went very well. The county commissioner opened the meeting saying that they were really not considering closure but that there were issues that need to be addressed. The county’s biggest issued appeared to be related to their airport ownership and the perception that this ownership was exposing them to liability. At the root of the matter was that they had airport inspection from MN-DOT two years earlier wherein Mn-DOT noted 17 obstructions at the airport (trees) that needed to be removed. There was typical poor communication between the airport commission and the county commissioners. Upon belatedly learning of the non-conformance of the airport, the county (especially the county attorney) appeared to have gotten a bit agitated. 

The county commissioners were actually quite surprised by the turnout to the meeting. They specifically noted the RAF’s attendance and appreciated us being there. In the end, the meeting served to re-establish communications between the county and the airport commission along with MN-DOT. The perceived threat of closure is now gone and the airport even learned of additional funding that was available from MnDOT. It appears that the future of the airport is on an even better path.

Many thanks to those of you who attended the meeting, or contacted the Commissioners.  You made a difference!

We are only days away from the 5th Annual Great MN Aviation Gathering, folks and the weather forecast is looking TERRIFIC for the event this year (….it is about time!).  Please click on the link at the top of the page and look for the schedule of events, and please plan to attend both days!

We will be posting instructions for those who choose to fly in on the GMAG page.  If you choose to fly in, please bring your own tiedowns!  We hope you will fly in, as this is one of the great perks of our event…YOU CAN FLY IN AND TAXI RIGHT UP TO THE GOLDEN WINGS FLYING MUSEUM VENUE!

We will be holding a silent auction for some very big items (Garmin equipment and Float Plane rating/resort lodging), as well as a big raffle, on Saturday noon.

We will also be selling tee shirts with the 2018 GMAG Photo winner on the shirt!  …and posters of the same!

Hope to see you there!

We are pleased to announce that Patrick Halligan has been elected to serve a three year term on our Board of Directors, and that Gregg Strathy and Steve Thibault have been re-elected to the Board to serve another three years.

Congratulations to them, and thanks to them for making the commitment to serve our members to further general aviation in Minnesota!

Please review this nicely organized document which succinctly outlines why we continue to be firmly against ATC Privitization. Our Representatives are home for recess, and tomorrow will be a perfect time to CALL them and ask them to vote AGAINST H.R. 2997! Kudos to AOPA for leading the charge against this change!