View from Manitoba

By Jerry Roehr


From left, Dryden Mayor Ann Krassilowski,
Peter Burns and Jerry Roehr.

Ever since I became a COPA member in 1970, I was impressed by the quality of the COPA Flight newspaper and the many contributions made by individuals in each issue.

I always amazed how Tony Swain is able to find so many interesting things to write about in his “Pacific Perspective.” Since I become the COPA Director for Manitoba/Nunavut, I thought I steal his concept and hopefully bring you a “View from Manitoba.”

The first thing I want to talk about is not a Manitoba issue, but concerns the newest COPA Flight in Ontario. This year the Dryden Flying Club became COPA Flight 159. Because Winnipeg is closer then Northern Ontario Director Marc Charron’s residence in North Bay, I was asked to welcome members of the Dryden Flying Club into the COPA family.

What a great opportunity to fly my Cessna 182 from St. Andrews/Winnipeg to Dryden on a beautiful sunny August 17, day. Del Schmucker who was instrumental in getting the new COPA Flight organized picked me up and took me to the Dryden Flying Club’s float base on Wabigoon Lake just outside of the Town of Dryden. As people gathered to celebrate the 50th Anniversary, Peter Burns, the President of the Club gave me a tour of the club house and the float base with its fuelling facilities and new ramp.

The official celebration was highlighted by Peter Burns welcoming everyone. Dryden’s Mayor Anne Krassilowsky presented a Certificate in recognition of the Club’s contribution to the community. In presenting COPA’s Flight Certificate #159, I was able to highlight COPA’s past activities and emphasize the current issues.

Since the Mayor sits on the Advisory Committee to Ontario’s Transport Minister James Bradley, she was very interested in our 406 ELT concerns and I was able to provide her with some briefing notes for her consideration.

The celebration concluded with a delicious fish fry with corn on the cob and all the trimmings.

As a new COPA Director, it was a cherished opportunity to get away from the larger airport and, as many of you have observed for many years, to witness grass roots flying and to hear the passion for Northern Ontario float flying expressed by members of the newest COPA Flight in Ontario.