Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Big O Loop, A CSS Venture

6 months ago, I started working on the Big O Loop as a private venture to benefit Owen and Len, the owners of the land above the LZ at Andy Jackson. It was my thought that they could use it to stop their financial bleeding and pay down the principal on the property, eventually paying it off and donating it to the club, taking a tidy write off or something.

However, they were losing money faster than they or I realized and it was time to turn to the board of the Crestline Soaring Society for help.

For the next few months, the board will be working on a feasibility study to buy the property from Len and Owen. The club as a whole will vote on it. I am confident that the club will go for it and will own the land outright long before I stop flying there.

The Big O Loop, a part of what will eventually be quite a nice destination flight park, will be off to a quick start with the purchase of a new utility vehicle to haul multiple wings up at once to the the "F'O' Hundred" and "Embree" launches. The club agreed to pay for the right vehicle for the job, sparing me having to dip far into the cash reserves to do it.

These are going to be very exciting times at the Andy Jackson Flight Park. The club has survived the threat of development and the fire and is going to be the place to go to fly in the West, if not the country. Where else will you be able to stay at the LZ, have nice showers and facilities, a clubhouse, year-around good flying weather, and launches at every necessary height to learn the sport and become a better pilot? It will be a foot launch paradise.

As a bonus, I am now very optimistic that that two men who took a *huge* risk for the club won't be losing hundreds of thousands of dollars.

I'm very happy tonight.

Via Testes and AJX (photo by Wills Wing test pilot and CSS Webmaster Ken Howells)