Published in Midwest Flyer Magazine – Aug/Sept 2016
BRAINERD, MINN. – The Minnesota Seaplane Pilots Association (MSPA) held another blockbuster safety seminar and fly-in, May 20-22, 2016 at Madden’s on Gull Lake near Brainerd, Minnesota. Attendance continues to grow due to the efforts of MSPA President Randy Schoephoerster and the organization’s board of directors and sponsors. Schoephoerster is the owner of Air Trek North, a flight school at Minneapolis Airlake Airport in Lakeville, Minnesota (www.airtreknorth.com). Ben Thuringer of Brainerd, Minn. is Vice President; Steve Guetter of Lakeville, Minn. is Treasurer; and Hans Meyer of Minneapolis, Minn. is Secretary.
Good weather welcomed some 20 aircraft on wheels that landed at East Gull Lake Airport (9Y2) and Brainerd Lakes Regional Airport (KBRD), and as many as 50 floatplanes on Gull Lake.
Speakers included Chris Meyer and Rachel Obermoller of the Minnesota DOT Office of Aeronautics (www.dot.state.mn.us/aero/). Obermoller did a presentation with fellow seaplane pilot, Ben Thuringer, of Madden’s resort, on how to license a seaplane base. Meyer did a presentation on returning an aircraft to service after maintenance. Dr. Randle Corfman, president of the Minnesota Pilots Association (MPA), discussed “Bush Pilot Medicine.” Former air traffic controller and state aeronautics official, Mark Schreier, reviewed Federal Aviation Regulations. Kevin Morris of the Minneapolis FAA FSDO discussed the causes of Minnesota seaplane accidents. Troy MacVey of Mac’s Seaplanes, Rising Sun, Indiana, described a Cessna 195 seaplane accident (www.macsseaplaneservice.com). CFII, author and aviation comedian, Rod Machado, lightened up the crowd at the closing banquet. Also featured at the banquet was Myron Angstman of Bethel, Alaska, who spoke on flying on floats throughout the rugged terrain of western Alaska (www.angstmanlawoffice.com).
An opening airshow drew a crowd of 400 people, and an accuracy landing contest involved 13 floatplanes. A simulated hangar dance and buffet luncheon were additional highlights.
Wipaire, Inc. and Lake & Air donated a Lightspeed Zulu headset as the grand door prize of the event. Wipaire also sponsored the band in O’Madden’s Pub following the banquet and beverages for the receptions.
The mission statement of the Minnesota Seaplane Pilots Association is to promote seaplane flying and safety programs; to promote a forum for the purpose of educating government officials, the legislature and the public on seaplane operations; and to create safe and compatible seaplane base facilities in Minnesota.
The 2017 Minnesota Seaplane Pilots Association Safety Seminar & Fly-In will be held May 19-21, again at Madden’s On Gull Lake. For more information on the association or safety seminar, visit www.mnseaplanes.com.
For more information on Madden’s On Gull Lake, visit www.maddens.com.