On a gloomy Saturday morning when most people might prefer to sleep in, the Stillwater Airport was abuzz with activity.
The Oklahoma State University Flying Aggies Fly-In and Car Show was held at the Stillwater Airport on Saturday morning. The Fly-In featured static aircraft displays, a car show and a kid’s zone.
“The event is basically just to get people from the community out and show them aviation,” said Flying Aggies Vice President Jacob Boules. “When we’re in the aviation program, we’re surrounded by it a lot of the time, but the community might not know about it. We want to ... get the community involved with aviation so they can look at planes, get kids interested in aviation and pretty much just promote it. Share the love.”
Boules said people from Texas, Kansas, Arkansas and Oklahoma were going to fly in for the event to show off their planes, but they had to cancel because of the weather.
Boules said he was happy they were still able to host the event because last year the Flying Aggies had to cancel the Fly-In because of weather.
Although the weather brought down the number of planes displayed at the Fly-In, one attendee said he was still pleased with how it turned out. Michael Ramsey said he came to support an OSU event and was impressed with the Fly-In.
“It’s been well put together,” Ramsey said. “You can’t fault them for not having many static planes because of the weather... It’s a pretty cool atmosphere and a car show as well.”
Tara Serocki, a member of the Flying Aggies, said she was happy with the turnout the Fly-In had. She said many people were worried they weren’t going to be able to have it again because of the weather.
“I think it was really great,” Serocki said. “... Unfortunately we didn’t get a lot of the planes that we wanted to, but a decent amount of people showed up for the car show and there’s a lot of people hanging out in the hanger, so I think it exceeded expectations.”
The Fly-In was a fundraiser for the Flying Aggies to help their flight team go to the National Intercollegiate Flying Association’s (NIFA) Safecon competition in May.
The national competition includes a variety of events for students to compete in, including precision landings, navigation and aircraft recognition.
The OSU flight team has done well at nationals in the past. At Safecon 2018, the flight team placed 11th. The team placed 1st at regionals three years in a row and this year they placed 2nd, Boules said.
“Also at nationals, the Grover Loening Trophy is given away,” Boules said. “That’s given away to the best overall collegiate flight program in the nation. OSU has won that 21 times, which is 17 more times than any other school.”
The Flying Aggies will bring 15 people and five or six planes to the national competition this year, Boules said. He said he hopes they can continue to be successful at nationals.
NIFA Safecon 2019 will be held in Madison, Wisconsin, May 13-19.