Young Eagles get ready for take off!

Get ready to celebrate all the Young Eagles out there!

Children can experience their first flight in an airplane FREE as part of the International Young Eagles Day.

The event is June 10 between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. at the Pittsburgh-Butler Regional Airport, 473 Airport Road, Butler, Pa. 16002

The Young Eagles program, launched in 1992, gives interested young people an opportunity to go flying in a general aviation airplane.

Participants, ages 8 to 17, will need a form (available at the event) completed and signed by a parent or guardian before the flight. This form also enrolls the participant in the Young Eagles National Log Book, and provides him or her with a commemorative certificate afterward. There is no cost before or after the flight.

The flights, which begin with a “ground school” discussion of what makes an airplane fly and includes other educational elements, are made possible through the generosity of EAA member volunteers. , This event is sponsored by EAA Chapter 857.

The first ground school begins at 9:30 a.m. The in-air flight lasts between 15 and 20 minutes. The pilot might allow the participant to take the controls!

Hot dogs, hamburgers, and soda will be available for purchase at the event.

This is not a fly-in. The group’s planned Breakfast Fly-Ins are scheduled for August 13 and Sept. 10.

Learn more at the EAA Chapter 857 here: Chapter http://www.857.eaachapter.org/

 

Welcome Deer Lakes Pilots Club!

There was no shortage of wings, wheels or smiles at the Deer Lakes Pilots Club’s open house on Saturday.

A continuous crowd enjoyed grilled food and great stories as the organization unveiled it’s new hangar (T6-1) and welcomed visitors.

The Deer Lakes Pilots Club is accepting new members! There are applications at the airport office for anyone who is interested!

   

Tool Bash Blast

Neighboring Penn Township Volunteer Fire Department held its annual Tool Bash in one of the airport’s community hangars this weekend.

Here’s a look at some of the fun:

        

Winner, winner

Winner, winner! Marlene Knobeloch of Butler gets a dinner.
Or maybe a lunch.
Knobeloch was selected as the winner of a $25 Serventi’s gift card from the Pittsburgh-Butler Regional Airport’s Facebook contest.
Thanks to everyone who participated. Look for more fun giveaways to people who like the airport’s Facebook page in the future.

Spring Open House

The Pittsburgh-Butler Regional Airport’s spring open house featured camaraderie and COOKIES!

Pitt the plane also made his public appearance debut.

Thanks to everyone who pitched in and attended.

 

 

 

 

 

Andy Allen joins Airport Authority

There was always a call to flight for Andy Allen. But as a boy, his ambition was to fly slightly higher.

“I wanted to be an astronaut,” he said.

Allen found his way into the pilot’s seat of an airplane by age 14. And 9,000+ piloting hours later he joins the Pittsburgh-Butler Regional Airport as the newest addition to the Butler County Airport Authority Board.

Allen, 39, grew up on the bicentennial seventh-generation Armstrong Farms in Saxonburg, and admits becoming a pilot was an untraditional ambition among his family members.

“I’m the odd ball,” he said.

Andy’s mother, Kathy, bought him his first flight lesson as a birthday gift, and he began flying about once a month at McVille Airport in rural Armstrong County.

He flew his first solo at 16 in a Cessna 152.

“McVille was an old potato farm,” he said. “It had a grass strip, and they had to move the round bales off the runway for me to solo.”

Throughout his days as a student at Shady Side Academy, the lure to aeronautics lingered. Andy recalls seeing a space shuttle take off as a school field trip, attending “Space Camp,” and proposing a trip to the airport for career day.

For his high school senior project, he earned his instrument rating.

After high school graduation, Andy earned his bachelor’s degree in Aeronautic Technology from Purdue University. While there, he interned at Kennedy Space Center, specifically studying human factors in shuttle maintenance.

“I still had a space bug,” he said.

Andy worked his way through college as a mechanic at a local airport, and in the process also earned his commercial pilot’s license.

In 2000, he became a commercial pilot with American Eagle Airlines, first based in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

His home base for flight would change more than a dozen times, including Chicago, Boston and Los Angeles.

But his home address returned to being the family farm around 2003, and remains there today.

In 2013, he stopped commercial flight to spend more time with his wife Kristan and children Drew, now 5, and Olivia, 4.

“It was time to put both feet into Armstrong Farms,” he said.

The family business is growing in phenomenal and unexpected ways. In addition to the 200-300 head of cattle, the homestead now includes a landscaping supply element, a real estate business and a bed and breakfast.

Andy and his mom now team up to offer a successful on-site wedding package that includes a ceremony, accommodations and a follow up bonfire.

“We host weddings,” he said. “When you have a wedding here, you are really having it at our house.”

But still, Andy loves to fly.

When he quit the airline industry he first bought a Maule that he later traded in for a Cessna, which he keeps at Pittsburgh-Butler Airport.

“This airport is such a great asset for the community, joining the board just made sense to me,” he said. “I love aviation and I’m invested in this community.”

Spring Open House

No fooling! Tenants are invited to visit the airport’s new offices located on the first floor of the Terminal Building and greet our newest Airport Authority Board Member, Andy Allen!

Stop in on Saturday, April 1 any time between 9 and 11 a.m.

We’ll have cookies, punch, and coffee, as well as the always enjoyable airport camaraderie. Recently acquired historic photos of the airport will be available for viewing.

Hope you can join us!

If you haven’t paid it by then, you can hand deliver your April rent at the Open House!  But if you’re mailing it (or your bank is) remember to update the address to  473 Airport Road, Suite 2, Butler PA  16002.

Pilots shake the Rust off at Weekend Event

PENN TWP – Meet Diana Wulff … a self-proclaimed Rusty Pilot.

“I haven’t been pilot in command in more than five years,” said Wulff of Center Township. “I’m ready to go back, and today was my first step.”

Wulff was among more than 60 people to attend a session of the Aircraft Owner’s and Pilots Association (AOPA) seminar Saturday at Pittsburgh-Butler Regional Airport.

The seminar, which was free to AOPA members, gave pilots the information they need to get current after a hiatus from aviation.

Members of the audience traveled from around Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia to attend.

Some said they had not flown in years due to family events, previous medical conditions and employment responsibilities. Others had flown that very morning.

“It’s just good to have a refresher,” Jim Winnier explained of his decision to attend.

The class was taught by Dale Robinson, a Certified Flight Instructor and aviation trainer from Delaware.

Every participant left the program with a logbook endorsement attesting that he or she completed three hours of ground training toward a Flight Review.

Based on the overwhelmingly positive experience, Butler County Airport Authority Board Member Andy Allen said the airport hopes to hold more AOPA events in the future.

Pittsburgh-Butler Regional Airport extends special thanks to Chas Tanner, who helped organize the event, and the Condor Aero Club from the Zelienople Airport for providing the morning’s donuts.