Come Celebrate “Girls in Aviation Day” on Saturday, September 23!
Free introductory airplane flights for youth (girls and boys) ages 8-17 will be offered at Champaign Willard Airport. The schedule is from 9:00-11:00 am, on a first-come, first-served basis. No preregistration is required, but a parent or guardian must accompany the youth and be able to sign a release form.
Please check the EAA Chapter 29 Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/eaachapter29/) for last-minute information regarding cancellation due to weather.
The flights are being offered by volunteer pilots who are members of the Experimental Aircraft Association (www.EAA.org). The EAA is a growing and diverse organization of members with a wide range of aviation interests and backgrounds.
Founded in 1953 by a group of individuals in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, who were interested in building their own airplanes, EAA expanded its mission of growing participation in aviation to include antiques, classics, warbirds, aerobatic aircraft, ultralights, helicopters, and contemporary manufactured aircraft.
EAA is the only association that offers the fun and camaraderie of participating in the flying, building, and restoring of recreational aircraft with the most passionate community of aviation enthusiasts.
The Young Eagles program has dedicated nearly 25 years to giving youth ages 8–17 their first free ride in an airplane, with over 2 million rides given to-date. It’s the only program of its kind, with the sole mission to introduce and inspire kids in the world of aviation. Learn more at https://www.eaa.org/en/eaa/aviation-education-and-resources/eaa-youth-education/eaa-young-eagles-program
BECOME A YOUNG EAGLE
Get ready to have the experience of your lifetime.
YOUR FLIGHT EXPERIENCE
Your Young Eagles® flight will last approximately 20 minutes.
Here’s how your flight will go:
- On the ground
Your pilot explains what will happen during the flight. You may talk about the airplane, review an aeronautical chart (or map), and complete a careful “walk-around” preflight inspection of the airplane.
- Just before takeoff
Your pilot explains the interior of the airplane, including the operation of the aircraft door, safety belts, and instrument panel.
- In the air
The flight lasts about 20 minutes. And, if you want, your pilot may let you take the controls!
- Back on the ground
There’s more time for you to ask questions about the flight. Your pilot is happy to tell you more about flying and his or her particular airplane.
You also get an official Young Eagles logbook with a personal code to activate your free EAA Student Membership and Sporty’s Learn to Fly Course.
INFORMATION FOR PARENTS
What is EAA?
EAA, the Experimental Aircraft Association, is an international aviation membership association founded in 1953 and headquartered in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Local chapters are located in all 50 states and many countries. Members are aviation enthusiasts of every age group, including many airline and commercial pilots, engineers, business people and even astronauts. They enjoy all types of airplanes, including “experimental” aircraft, those aircraft built by individual craftsmen, rather than in a factory. “Experimental” refers to the category of aircraft designed by the FAA for these types of airplanes. Similar to standard category aircraft, Experimental aircraft are inspected and certified airworthy by FAA.
Why was the EAA Young Eagles program developed?
The EAA Young Eagles Program was developed in 1992 to welcome young people into the world of aviation. Aviation is exciting and vital to our nation’s future and the best way to convey that message is to actually experience flight in a first-hand setting.
What do you hope to gain by taking my child flying?
Each Young Eagle will experience a safe and enjoyable flight that will give them new perspectives on the world and life in general. Young Eagles program participants will understand that an individual’s potential is unlimited and for them, the sky is the limit!
Who are the pilots?
The pilots participating in the Young Eagles program are local members of EAA who are volunteering their time and aircraft to make your child’s flight possible. Each pilot is licensed by the FAA (or governing organization outside the U.S., such as Transport Canada) and all aircraft are likewise licensed by the government. The flights are conducted according to federal regulations. No aerobatic maneuvers are performed.
How does my child become a Young Eagle?
If your child is between the ages of 8 and 17, find a Young Eagles coordinator or pilot near you. As a parent, you’ll need to complete a Young Eagle registration form that is available from your pilot. They can help you fill out the form and answer any other specific questions you may have.
What will the flight be like?
First, your pilot will explain what will happen during the flight. This might include talking about the airplane, reviewing an aeronautical chart and identifying reference points during the flight, completing a careful “walk around” pre-flight inspection of the airplane and identifying the parts that control the airplane, helping buckle your child’s seat belt, and describing the interior of the airplane, including the instrument panel.
Once in the air, your child will see the earth and sky in a new and exciting way. They will experience the wonderful freedom of flight that many people only dream about. Many people remember this experience for the rest of their lives. The length of the flight will depend on many factors, but most Young Eagle flights last between 15 and 20 minutes.
Back on the ground, there will be additional time for questions after the flight. Please note that each pilot is encouraged to follow the Young Eagle pilot guidelines, but also has the freedom to customize the flight to make the most of local conditions and facilities.
What happens to the registration form?
After the flight is completed, the pilot will issue your child the official EAA Young Eagles logbook or certificate. The pilot then returns the registration form to the EAA Young Eagles office, where the flight will be officially registered in the World’s Largest Logbook.
At the same time, EAA understands that privacy is important. Only basic information is displayed on the web and your address and phone number will never become part of the public database.
EAA will send your child follow-up information about our free on-line ground school course, details regarding other youth aviation programs, and EAA scholarships. Your child’s name and e-mail address will not be sold or used for commercial purposes. EAA is sensitive to keeping you and your child’s contact information confidential.