Vintage pilots invited to fly model planes

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BDN file photo Jim Heiman, of Janesville, removes a battery from his remote controlled model airplane during a work day at the Rock River Aero Modelers Society runway in the Town of Turtle. The nonprofit is planning a Vintage Pilots Fun Fly from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. on Saturday at 6806 S. County Road J, Beloit.

SHOPIERE - Vintage pilots are being called to bring their planes to a set of runways in the Town of Turtle.

The Rock River Aero Modelers Society (RRAMS) are inviting pilots who are 62 and over to attend the inaugural Vintage Pilots Fun Fly from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. on Saturday at 6806 S. County Road J, Beloit.

Certified event coordinator Stan Anderson said there are many events celebrating vintage planes, but few honoring the pilots.

He and the rest of the nonprofit group are inviting these older pilots for a no stress, no judgment day of flying. Anderson said the pilots are welcome to bring their model airplanes out for a day of fun.

Any radio-controlled model aircraft is welcome, though RRAMS encourages pilots to bring replicas of vintage aircrafts.

The organization is planning to make the Vintage Pilots Fun Fly the group's second of two annual events. They still plan to host the Flying Circus Fun Fly in September.

Pilots are welcome as long as they follow the Academy of Model Aeronautics' (AMA) rules, have no turbines and pay the $10 landing fee. He said there's a 45-by-30-foot runway and bathrooms on-site.

Spectators are welcome to come watch for free as long as they stay behind the fence and enjoy the show.

"You can see the planes from anywhere in the area," Anderson said.

Right now Anderson is just hoping for good weather in light of a grim forecast. He expects to have 15-30 pilots out there on Saturday, where he and fellow organizers will seek input on how to enhance next year's event. The group sent out fliers to more than 300 clubs in Wisconsin and Illinois to pique pilots' interest in the event.

Anderson wanted the event to correspond with Father's Day in an effort to get fathers out to the event with the whole family.

In addition to being an AMA certified event coordinator, Anderson also is an initial pilot instructor. This means he can teach newcomers how to fly the planes from the ground up.

For more information about the event or on joining the club, go to RRAMS.net.

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