Winter brings special events as outdoor flying slows down. On November 22, 2014, I visited Walt’s HobbyTown and its annual Secret Santa Sale. The event is more than a sale, where store proprietor Bruce Throne carries on the tradition of giving back to modelers.
Throughout the day, store founders Walt and Jan Throne give away thousands of dollars in prizes, with free doughnuts and refreshments. Area AMA clubs, plastic modeling clubs, RC car clubs, and others displayed their works and talked about their organizations. The local rocketry club launched rockets outdoors to the delight of everyone—even with a few snow flurries falling!
In attendance at Walt’s and promoting the Highland Jets event in Frankfort, New York, was Art Arro. Art is a modeler of distinction, having worked in the 1970s on the concept of NASA’s Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA).
Otherwise known as carrying the space shuttle on top of a 747, the SCA concept was first tested on RC model aircraft. A scale RC model 747 and space shuttle used in early NASA proof-of-concept testing now resides in the National Model Aviation Museum in Muncie, Indiana.
On Sunday, November 23, 2014, I attended the Garden State Circle Burners Swap Meet at the fire hall in Wayne, New Jersey. The Circle Burners event is a long-standing swap meet with various modeling luminaries and members of the AMA Model Aviation Hall of Fame in attendance.
Vendors specializing in glow fuel and balsa wood, as well as modelers with both Old-Time and modern aircraft came to sell their items. Don’t miss out on good deals and opportunities sell your unwanted items. This swap meet season, help support clubs by attending swap meets and auctions, and have a fun time, too!
Upstate New York modelers in the Capital District have worked to secure large indoor flying facilities. Several promising locations are former Army National Guard armory buildings. Many of these buildings have outlived their military usefulness and have been deeded to local municipalities, schools, institutions or private concerns.
New building owners are looking for ways to repurpose these facilities. The Electric Powered Aeromodelers (EPA) club of Schenectady, New York, found new owners of the former Schenectady Armory and Drill Hall, Legree Restorations, very receptive. The EPA and Legree have scheduled several winter flying sessions to gauge interest.
Consider these former armory buildings and similarly large repurposed structures for potential indoor flying sites.
Remember, it’s not about what we fly, it’s about the people and the friends we make.[dingbat]