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Wings over Springs Charity Fly-In - Event Report

Severe weather and heavy fog threatened this clubs first event, but the Holly Springs Skyhawks pulled off a great event for the pilots, the public, and their charity.


Wings Over Springs 2017 - Fun in the Fog and in the Sun

As I drove into the park in Holly Springs, NC, the fog was ominous and thick, with a ceiling of no more than 125 ft. I was greeted by Douglas LeRoy, the club president and found a parking spot past the 25+ pilots that were already there. Planes were in the air, but mostly park-flyer sized foamies to stay under the fog. Maybe I should've brought my night flyers! Despite the fog sticking around till nearly 1pm, everyone had a good time flying what they could, eating the EXCELLENT chicken tacos at the food truck, and watching the insane skills on the multiGP multirotor course! Despite forgetting my wing tubes to the CarbonZ T-28 at home, I got some nice flights on my Sig Rascal 80 and Hobbyking EFExtra. I even got to fling my tiny SPC Maker 95x micro quad through the multiGP course...that was a blast!

Doug sent me the following report to share with you all...

From Skyhawks President - Douglas LeRoy

If you were anywhere near central North Carolina on Friday evening September 1, 2017, you would have been certain the weather conditions would not recover in time to permit a major fly-in event the following morning. Driving rain, lightning, three-inch hail, tornados, and high winds terrorized the area for much of late evening and through the early morning. Things appeared dire for Wings Over Springs Electric Fly-In and Swap Meet charity fundraiser. Pre-registered pilots, food truck vendor, a multitude of volunteers were about to be notified. Planning and preparation wasted, then…. calm.

Daybreak, September 2, 2017: Club Officers awoke to a calm, soggy, and very, very foggy morning. Just enough relief from the previous evening’s weather that Wings Over Springs Fly In and SWAP Meet 2017 hosted by the Holly Springs Skyhawks Radio Control Group ( was ON! Gates opened at 8:00 and following a brief pilot’s meeting at 9:30, the flight line was opened. The fog was not cooperative early as most pilots needed to keep aircraft within fifty feet of the ground. A few pilots “lost” their planes for several seconds but recovered and landed until visibility improved. Those with small foamies and UMX size aircraft seized the moment to get in a lot of flight time.

At 10:00 the event opened to the public as Wings Over Springs Model Aviation Day. Free to attend, this portion of the event was designed to educate and entertain the public regarding what RC flying is all about. There was an auxiliary area adjacent to the main event that was set up a Drone Racing Course and operated by local MultiGP club members. Plenty of monitors and goggles were available for the public to ride along and experience this aspect of our hobby.

The fog lifts completely as noon approached… the noontime demos were the big entertainment draw. Several hundred spectators gathered at show center to witness aircraft of all types being flown. A Magnum PI Hughes 500D replica, an aerobatic quad copter flown line-of- site, 3D pattern, and a replica of German “secret weapon” aircraft from Raiders of the Lost Ark were just some of the unique crafts that took to the skies. Finishing the event was Rick Cawley and his multi-award winning 1/2 scale Jungmeister!! Rick flew an amazing sequence of maneuvers that completely left the crowd in awe.

Blue skies and plenty of sun emerged to give pilots a few remaining hours of perfect flight conditions. In spite of this being the club’s very FIRST organized event (they chartered in 2015), they put on an event that rivaled the best in our hobby! Fifty-two pilots relaxed, socialized, and had a wonderful time. Several hundred public spectators joined the fun and the event raised $400 in support of Meg’s Smile Foundation ( If you missed the inaugural event, put a mark on Labor Day weekend 2018 as Wings Over Springs will definitely be back and you won’t want to miss it.

Last edited by Nikolei Zinsli; Sep 06, 2017 at 06:59 PM..
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Sep 10, 2017, 12:17 PM
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Amazing result! Thanks for the report!
Sep 11, 2017, 09:18 PM
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Greg Gimlick's Avatar
It was a great event and you guys pulled it off without a hitch. Nobody would believe this was the first event you've hosted, it was just that smooth. The weather sure threatened it, but in the end, we had a great time even if ceilings were low for a while.

Great job! Great event! I'm looking forward to next years event!

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