This past week it was time for the annual Gifted Program field trip for students in grades 3, 4 and 5. We hopped on the yellow school bus with our friendly bus driver Larry and made our way to Kelowna Airport for a tour of Southern Interior Flight Centre.
Link to photos from our trip (link).
We were welcomed by Marc Vanderaegen, the flight school director. Neal, one of the pilots at the flight centre was our host and tour guide, along with George Cann, operations manager at Okanagan Mountain Helicopter. George had brought a training helicopter over to the flight centre so that the students could get an up close and personal look at the machine. George explained the basics of how a helicopter works and then the students got to take turns sitting in the chopper and checking out the instrument panel and main controls.
After checking out the helicopter Neal showed the students one of the flight centre's single engine fixed wing aircraft. The students got to sit in the cockpit and get a sense of what it is like to pilot a small airplane.
Neal and George shared their expertise with the group and answered our questions. They each worked very hard to convince the students that (a) flying is a great profession and (b) that helicopters were better than airplanes (George) or (c) that fixed with aircraft were better (Neal)!
The students were excellent guests; they were polite, well behaved and asked great questions!
Thank you to our chaperones; Rebecca Aubie, Heather Glynes, Kristin Maier, Terry McCartan (his 5th trip!), Julie Read, and Adam Schroeder. It was great having them along!