Fun in the Desert – AOPA Summit!

Nothing like a sunset airshow with the San Jacinto Mountains in the background!

Hey, everybody.

I wanted to share with you something cool that my friend Kit did recently. She attended the annual convention of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, or “AOPA.” It was held down in Palm Springs, CA, playground to the stars!

AOPA’s a great organization. It’s the largest collection of pilots and general aviation enthusiasts (that’s a big word for a Doberman, by the way!) in the world. What does that mean, exactly? Well, for those of us who fly anything other than airliners, military, or cargo aircraft, AOPA’s got our back. They provide education, advocacy, networking….. all that good stuff. Everything from our humble seaplanes to homebuilts to private jets or biplanes. And, each year, they invite their members to gather for workshops, a trade show, social events, and just plain old drooling over pretty aircraft on display (drooling is something I can do pretty well!)

Kit’s pal Rod Machado, doing what he does best

Kit reports that she really had a great time, attending the seminars, chatting with fellow pilots, and seeing old friends such as Rod Machado, John and Martha King, and others. She even got to shake the hands of some of the Flying Wild Alaska pilots – I’m jealous!  And, when the convention is in Palm Springs, it’s even more fun because they taxi airplanes from the airport right up to the convention center!  The famous Parade of Planes is quite a sight to see!

It also wasn’t too shabby to hang out in the desert where all the Hollywood stars used to play. (well, I’m sure they still do! But we’re talking the Rat Pack days…. the glamorous 60s!) Kit even got to see the famous San Andreas Fault, which thankfully stayed quiet during the visit.

If you’re a pilot and you don’t already belong to AOPA, you really should consider joining. (I would join, except they don’t have a “dogs only” membership option.) It’s a great organization, and they throw great parties, too.


Toby James

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