View Full Version : Cool experience for all.

03-16-2010, 08:47 PM
A few days back a gentleman contacted me out of the blue and said someone told him to get in touch with me. I asked him how I could help him. He said he was in charge of a boys scout troop and this month was aviation month. He asked me if I could show my plane to the troop. After talking it over with my wife, we agreed to host the troop. My wife and I don?t have kids and don?t have friends with small kids. So we are not used to everything that is involved.

So today I purchased 2 boxes of girls scout cookies and some refreshments. We put everything out on the table. Shortly afterwards the doorbell rings. They were here. They walked into the house and I gave them a choice. You can have snacks now or later however, no snack allowed in the garage. The adults said garage first. As we walked down the hallway everyone was in single file line behind me. I opened the door and as each kid came through the door and saw ?Dilemma? (my plane), they let out the coolest ?WOOOOOWWWWW?. Every single one of them. You could see the excitement on their faces. I answered many questions that only kids would ask. I let them sit in the front seat and closed the ?hatch? or canopy for us aviation types. I showed them how to use clecoes and how I made fiberglass parts out of foam and play-dough.

After the tour was over they presented me with a card. They placed it on my wall. The only thing between me and playtime were snacks. They demolished the cookies like little piranhas.

This experience took me straight back to my childhood. During my six grade graduation, I promised everyone in attendance that I would one day build an airplane. Been chasing that dream every since. A few pics of the visit from today.


03-16-2010, 08:51 PM
Forgot these.


03-16-2010, 09:09 PM
What a great experience! I would love to host a group like that. Kudos to you and your wife. You may have planted some seeds that may take years to blossom, but they're there nonetheless. Thanks for sharing the experience with us.

03-16-2010, 09:11 PM
The best of my 470 hours in my 6A was giving Young Eagle rides, you'll love it. That is why I ultimately opted to build a 4 instead of a 3, Young Eagles and as Smokey calls them LGIB. BTW, I can appreciate the questions asked by the kids. When I was a firefighter, I gave stop, drop and roll classes to preschoolers. One time I was telling them "what to do when the smoke detectors goes off". They said don't you mean "when the smoke detector comes on"? I was stymied and speechless. Their teacher just laughed at me.
Charlie T

03-17-2010, 07:00 AM
My very first airplane ride was in a 152 (probably) as part of aviation merit badge as a young boy scout. I've never forgotten it. You definitely did some good work with those kids.

pierre smith
03-17-2010, 07:36 AM
....and thanks. My uncle gave me my first 'ride' in his Tri-Pacer in Rhodesia when I was about 12.

Axel, you may just have started another one on his way to being an ag pilot:)


03-17-2010, 10:05 AM
Hosting those kids was a very cool thing to do Axel! You made an impact on all of them for a long time to come. I too had my first aviation experience as a Boy Scout working on the aviation merit badge. As a former Scoutmaster, the joy is finding things that "click" with each one of the boys, and I guarantee you did that for at least 1 of them!

03-17-2010, 10:33 AM
Very cool, Axel! You done good. Inspiring...

03-17-2010, 11:50 AM
Axel, That's a great story and better than anything I remember doing as a cub scout.

03-17-2010, 12:07 PM
Great job and thanks for sharing, very inspiring.

03-17-2010, 12:38 PM
I think that is awesome! There is nothing better than introducing young kids to the excitement of aviation. I can see their excitement in the pictures. Lots of grinning from ear to ear.
On April 24th, we are hosting some boy scouts out at Pete Howell and Bernie Weiss's hanger at KANE. We are going to introduce the young lads to experimental aircraft. Pete was a boy scout himself so it was pretty easy to convince him to help out.
Another good way to help out (requires free time) is to sign up to do the aviation merit badge. Tom Berge, another member or the MN Wing and myself are going to do the merit badge for the boy scouts this year. It should be a lot of fun and a real learning experience. Tom is what I consider to be an expert in the field of RV aircraft assembly and flying so I am hoping to learn as much as the boy scouts.
It's a real up-lifting experience to show kids how exciting life can be. Sure, flying on a video game is fun BUT NOTHING BEATS FLYING FOR REAL and ABSOLUTELY NOTHING BEATS FLYING A PLANE THAT THEY COULD BUILD THEMSELVES! My hats off to you for taking the time to leave a lasting impression on kids that are involved in a really good program (Boy Scouts of America).

03-17-2010, 03:07 PM
I am my son's cub scout den leader and can report they love machines. I took my den of 8 boys to the the FedEx MD11 sim in memphis, couldn't tell who liked it more the dads or kids! They all landed without crashing,,,with some help from me.

My son can now imitate a GLOC in the back of the F1 Rocket on the back side of over the tops. The first time they spring that one on you it is an eye opener.

Kids dig flying! Show it off.

03-17-2010, 05:52 PM
Great effort Axel! As a former Eagle Scout, those were wonderful days & experiences...no one encouraged me to fly or build and airplane, tho. You have planted seeds, a good thing..Reno Red...BTW, Tad is coming along nicely w/ the fastback.

03-17-2010, 09:17 PM
Good going Axel!!

This is one thing that experimental builders can do to improve awareness and support for experimental aviation. I think it has as much impact as a Young Eagle flight.

The media is sometimes all too eager to give the public the impression that all experimental planes do is fall out of the sky and kill people. You countered that in spades by giving those kids the real scoop.

The guy in the next hangar row to me did the same thing last summer. I don't know how he had the presence of mind to do it but he did. His plane was completed and flying and when the troop ran out of oohs and aahs, he brought them impromptu over to my hangar to see a build in progress. They got a two fer.

Every RVer that has the access should be making the same effort.
Dave A.
6A build

03-17-2010, 10:34 PM
Thanks for all the kind words guys. My wife and I enjoyed the experience just as much as they did. Today I spoke to one of the girl scouts leaders for another show and tell. We will be scheduling the visit soon.

I always wanted to be a boy scout however, never had the chance.

Doug Lewis
03-25-2010, 08:16 AM
Sorry I missed this when it was first posted. As others have said you can certainly see the kids excitement. I still remember meeting with a Northwest pilot and touring the flight service station for my aviation merit badge as a boy scout and have since given the merit badge as a scout leader.

Thank you for sharing your shop and experience.