Good Afternoon Everyone!
I hope I remember how to do this whole Blog Update thing! It's been a really busy month, especially around the CAF, but that's no excuse for not updating, and I hope you didn't get too exasperated waiting! I'm having trouble remembering what has happened over the last month and a half, so bear with me as I struggle through!
The first, and most exciting topic of the day is our latest venture with the State of Minnesota! As many of you have likely heard, we have been working with Senator Metzen and his staff, along with the River Heights Chamber of Commerce, to add the CAF Minnesota Wing to the 2010 Bonding Bill. The bill has been signed into law, and includes $150,000 grant to the Wing for upgrades to our hangar! The work will start soon, and will focus on ADA and code related upgrades, all moving towards a large, long-term goal laid out by the Wing Staff! We are pursuing a number of other grants, private funding and more to help make our goals a reality!
Work around the hangar has been steadily increasing. Miss Mitchell has a number of new additions, some of which are aesthetic, and some very functional. The inspection on the bomber is almost complete, as is the engine install. We have a bad cylinder being changed on the left engine, but we are right on time for our goals of completion by the 3rd of April. The BT-13 inspection is very nearly complete, though the Harvard and L-5 are just beginning. Little to no trouble is expected with both of these aircraft, and they should be back together and flying very soon. The PT-22 is receiving its final fit-and-finish items, and will be ready to fly when we have warm enough weather to start training.
The Motor Pool has found some serious corrosion needing repair on some of the vehicles. If you are experienced in body work, please stop by and talk with Bill Atchison... He needs some help to get the major projects rolling! They have nearly finished with the yellow Tug, which has gone through some repairs, and should have that online by April 3rd.
We have a new PIO (Public Information Officer) on board! Joe Palmersheim, an editor with one of the local newspapers, has had a life-long interest in warbirds, and recently got involved. He has gotten his hands dirty on a number of projects, but is really excited about helping us with marketing, press releases, the newsletter and more! We wish to welcome Joe to the position, and look forward to working with him!
The majority of the Wing Staff spent last weekend in Midland, Texas for Headquarter's Annual Winter Staff Conference. A number of different Wings and Squadrons were in attendance, looking to share ideas, and figure out ways for all of us to increase membership, funding, education, and safety. It went well, and it shows that Steve Brown's strategies, although sometimes controversial, are working, and making the CAF a more successful entity. A lot of good information was collected, exchanged, extorted and we will be looking to implement some of these new ideas throughout the year!
Members of the Wing, keep an eye out for the Straight and Level newsletter! The newsletter will be sent out in early April... there is a plan to have the newsletter go out quarterly, and on a much tighter schedule. Please let us know if you would like to hear about anything in particular, have ideas for articles, or have photos you wish to share... in one form or another, your ideas will be shared!
Enjoy the great weather!