Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Flying, Kids, and Finding Pilot Friends

Today, I just ran into somebody interesting who used to be a pilot and is considering getting back into flying and he has kids. Wow, that is the combination I need to find more often.

The flying community great, lots of places to find friends, but it is not as easy to find other pilots with kids. So what happened today made me think of all the different places I have looked to find friends. Many of the spots I looked are more applicable to people without kids... so read on either way.

Type Clubs

We own a Cessna 182, so the type club for us is the Cessna Pilots Association. I joined this and have learned incredible amounts of information! It is a great place for making friends on-line, getting advice, and helping with all your owning needs. When I was looking for a plane, I even had a member go fly to the airport and look at the plane for me.

One time, I was going to be having a flying vacation and I inquired if anybody else wanted to join. No response that time. I will have to try again.

Local Pilot Associations

In our area, there are two different types of places to look for other pilots.

One good place is the Colorado Pilots Association. This is a neat place to find people with different types of planes in the local area. This is also a great place to meet people and they organize lots of trips to different places. They have a fantastic list of trips that happen almost every month or weekend. I have not been to too many trips yet, but hopefully more someday soon.

Every so often, the Longmont airport does pot luck at holidays. The Longmont Hangar Association and some other local hangar owners sponsor this. Lots of people go to this, once again very friendly.


In some areas, the EAA can be a great place to meet people. Usually there are local chapters of the EAA where you can meet people of the local airport. Sometimes, I hear the chapters are really devoted to the homebuilders which I am not. But I could probably be convinced to help somewhere. The local EAA chapters have died, but I hope to someday check out this some more.

I have been curious about the Commemerative Air Force too, but the closest chapter is a ways away.

The Local FBO or Flying School

Local FBOs have a lot of transient people, but sometimes you run into the local instructors or students. Talking with people at the line of the self serve gas pump on a busy day can be fun. Sometimes, FBOs will have barbeques on weekends through the summer; this can be fun.


Sometimes, airshows have pilot seminars. This can be a good place to meet and talk with people. These might be more local people if the air show is local. I have not met too many at outside of the seminars, but maybe this is due to most of those people being from out of town.

Hangar Neighbors

I have run into a few of my hangar neighbors occasionally. Some more than others. It is amazing the number of people that have planes and don't seem to fly them. It is kind of sad. But hopefully I am just not around when they happen to fly.

Flying with Pilot Wannabees

Maybe the best place to find people who want to fly and have kids is to look around for people who don't fly but always wanted to. I have run into this a number of times, and I still need to take quite a few up. Who knows maybe someday they will be pilots. It is also great to expose new people and their kids who probably have never been in planes to flying. It is quite a thrill!

Then occasionally you end up in a new situation like I did today. I guess the thing to do is to talk about flying and who knows what will happen. Maybe you will meet a pilot wannabee or maybe a current pilot that you did know or a past pilot that wishes he could still be flying.