We have been busy at NAFA over the last couple months. We would like to congratulate Fred Bedard who is another one of our newly rated private helicopter pilots. Fred is already a rated airplane pilot and came to us seeking to add a helicopter rating to his license. He has worked hard over the last few years and we all admire his dedication. Above he is pictured with his primary instructor Anthony at our Marlboro Airport location. Congratulations Fred!
Congratulations to Joe Migliore on his hard earned first solo. Joe, a former Huey crew chief, has returned to helicopters but is now at the controls. Just days after his retirement the weather was perfect for solo. After a few laps around the pattern with his instructor, Joe returned to the ramp where his instructor exited and off he went.
Nice job Joe. We all appreciate your enthusiasm and hard work. Now it’s on to more solo and cross country flying. Congratulations from all of us here at NAFA!
Up in North Andover we laid out the welcome mat, or in our case, balloons, for an open house last Saturday. People who normally pass by our gate on Sutton Street took advantage of the occasion to drop by for helicopter rides, barbecue, and lots of questions and answers with our instructors. Our certified ground instructor Dotsie was here to meet some of her new students, including Mitch and Kevin, who will be joining us when our next ground school starts on September 10th. Some other interested folks stopped by with their questions about helicopters, jobs, and training with our FAA approved Part 141 syllabus.
We also had a visit from a few people who were celebrating birthdays. Anna and Nicole stopped by with their dad and he bought them each a helicopter lesson to celebrate Anna’s 21st birthday. And Walter’s buddy brought him in to redeem a voucher he had gotten online through our deal with Travelzoo. Walter spent a lot of time sitting next to pilots in his military days, but this time he got the controls and he did an awesome job and had a great time. Happy Birthday Walter and Anna!
We also got visited by a couple of families who just like to come down to the airport on weekends. In my time here I’ve met a lot of people who love to hang out at the Lawrence airport on a beautiful Saturday and watch the airplanes and helicopters fly. Now they had a chance to see what the helicopters look like from the inside and even take a ride!
We loved the chance to meet all the people who stopped by to see the school, from helicopter students to those who were just curious. And even though the open house is over, our door is still open every day – just stop in and say hi!
When you’re flying, it’s easy (and sometimes good) to get caught up in the technical details. Even as everything goes as planned, a pilot’s head is often swimming with procedures, routes, regulations… Between sweating the details (which we always do) and flying an often familiar route, it’s easy to lose sight of the pure fun and excitement of being in the air.
That’s why it’s so refreshing to be with our students and customers for important moments in their lives. When you send a student off for his first solo and see him come back with that “I can do this!” smile on his face you remember your own first time, and when you fly above the city or along the beach on a beautiful evening, you remember why you started flying in the first place.
It must have been Valentine’s day that started the trend, but in the last two weeks we’ve been privileged to be with several couples when they became engaged 500 feet above the bright lights of Boston. Jennifer got her boyfriend a helicopter tour for his birthday (great idea!) only to get a surprise when he pulled out an engagement ring over the city, and Amos coordinated the whole event ahead of time, right down to finding the most breathtaking point in the tour to surprise his girlfriend with a breathtaking ring. A few days later, we got the chance to take a recently married couple for a flight over some special places so they could get another look at the spot where he proposed to her, and the park where they got married.
A helicopter ride is a great way to fall in love with the city again, or for the first time, as you see it from a whole new perspective. It’s also a great gift, a great date, and a way to make a special moment even more memorable. It’s our pleasure to fly with you, and our privilege to be a part of special moments in the lives of our customers. We wish you all the best.