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St. Augustine Fly in

I would like to thank the faithful and dedicated members and their guests for a successful St. Augustine Fly-in.
An unusual 3 days of being socked in (200ft, maybe) could have easily cut attendance in half, however, these
members decided they were going to attend if they had to drive. They did drive. *They came to the SAAPA Christmas Party from North Carolina, Georgia, South Florida, West Florida, and Mass. *Ok, so Tom only drove from Orlando, FL. * They said they would be there and 100% of them did attend. *Gary suggested we rename it the “drive-in”.
We enjoyed the SAAPA Christmas Party on Friday night, attended SAAPA monthly meeting on Saturday morning for a program by an Aviation Attorney. *Saturday evening we started our program with an introduction of each member and guest. Vic Martinelli, a former Airport Board member, welcomed everyone to Northeast Florida Regional Airport and gave a brief review of the long term planning. * Following dinner, BAC member Mike Thompson gave a presentation on the exceptional value of a membership in Beech Aero Club. *He has experience with similar organizations and feels BAC is a very resourceful club.
Next was our guest speaker, Captain Ron Strauss. *Captain Strauss has had an extensive career in aviation.
He has flown over 40 years and exceeded 30,000 hours. *Ron Strauss flew the “Lisa Maria, the Convair 880 from the time Elvis purchased the plane until just after his death. *Incidentally, the 880 burned 2,000 gallons per hour in cruise.
On Lisa Maria’s birthday, Elvis took her to Colorado for a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. *His presentation was informative and humorous. *I think everyone was very pleased.
We had a short door prize drawing and then left for the Trolley Tour of St. Augustine’s “Nights of Lights”.
Initially, we had a slight delay, but everything worked out and we had a very nice tour of the downtown historic
district and all of the beautiful decorated building.
Sunday morning, we met for breakfast at the Marriott, and after visiting for about an hour, everyone said their good-byes and departed for home.
Thankfully, everyone had a safe trip home.
The St. Augustine Airport Pilots Association were great hosts for the Christmas party and Saturday’s meeting.
Denise and crew worked very hard to see that everyone was well fed and had a good time.
I would like to thank Galaxy aviation for all they did to make this possible. Also, Vic Martinelli, the St. Augustine Airport Authority and the staff *for their assistance. Special thanks for Ron Strauss for taking the trip to St. Augustine to share his experiences with us.
I would like to thank Mike and Patti Deck. They started 3 days before getting everything in place for this event and
things went very smoothly. *Mike “Gunner” Thompson, the reason I own a Sundowner has always been there when
anything was needed. *I would also like to thank the guests and friends that came in support of BAC. Also, I would like to thank all the members of BAC for making this the fine organization that it is today.
Most importantly, I want to thank the members that came, even when they could not safely fly to the event. I greatly appreciate your efforts.

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