By Kevin Psutka
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The annual fly-in at an ice strip on the Ottawa River was a challenging one this year, the 21st gathering, on February 27, at which host Maurice Prud’Homme (a retired chief chef at the Parliament Buildings) served up his world famous chilli.
The weather did not cooperate this year. Although there was sufficient ice, a period of warm weather leading up to the event left the strip with standing water and what snow was on the ice was all slush; too risky for a 182 on wheels.
So, I and about 200 other people drove to the event. There were six brave souls who flew their aircraft in, mostly on skis, although one Cherokee became a float plane of sorts on landing.
I was on a special mission this year to present our newest COPA Flight with their official certificate with Darin Graham, a former COPA director. Darin gets the prize for coming the furthest distance this year – he lives in New Zealand.
Maurice and several area pilots decided to form a COPA Flight, not only to more formally organize the annual event, but so that the Flight would become a focal point for other activities throughout the year.
Flight 169 will be the eyes and ears of COPA in the area of Pontiac, Quebec, where several aircraft owners are active in promoting and enjoying personal aviation. If you are interested in getting involved, the Flight meets the third Monday every month at 7:30 p.m. Call to confirm. 819-568-2359.
I was also pleased to receive a donation of $2,000 from André Durocher, Flight 169 member and developer of a residential airpark at Pontiac www.pontiacairpark.com. André is a firm believer in the need to protect our freedom to fly and he has generously offered to donate $1000 to the Freedom to Fly Fund for each lot that he sells. Thank you Andre!
Next year’s fly-in will be on February 26. Mark your calendar and watch our On the Horizon calendar for details.