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  • Mn Pilots Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman, President, Minnesota Pilots Association|Jul 1, 2020

    Want to create an adventure, regardless of your age? Pick up the phone, call 2 or 3 people who you enjoy and who you trust to fly with and organize a flying trip someplace. The place doesn’t have to be a major adventure destination. No, it can be to an airport someplace that you can use as a base to explore using it as a base of operations. Perhaps it has camping facilities. Perhaps you can arrange hotel accommodations at a nearby airport. Has it been awhile since you camped out in a tent? Yeah,... Full story

  • Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman|Jun 1, 2020

    Staying “young” is an important concept, I think, generally speaking. We all try to stay young to some extent, even as we reach advanced ages (the older I get the older the definition of advanced age gets!). This has become a significant challenge as events are canceled as a result of our government’s response to the coronavirus. We find ourselves isolated more than most of us can remember and the resulting cabin fever can take a toll on how we feel, how we look at life, how we deal with the i... Full story

  • MnPilots Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman|Apr 1, 2020

    Uncertain times. We are certainly uncertain as I write this column. Our lives have changed drastically since I wrote last month’s column and we just don’t know which way is up about many things. Our gyroscopes are tumbling. We are needing to go on partial panel, in instrument flying terms. The Corona virus variant, COVID 19, that we are dealing with is well understood at many levels. It is quite contagious and is spread almost 100% by transmission via respiration droplets…aerosol, airbo... Full story

  • Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman, President, Minnesota Pilots Association|Mar 1, 2020

    A frequent question posed to members of the Minnesota Pilots Association is “Why should I become a member? What would membership do for me?” That was a question that the founding members of the board of directors asked ourselves as we were considering going through the steps of starting this organization, and a question that we frequently consider frequently as we turn introspective to ask if our organization makes a difference. I think it is important to do so, and the Great Minnesota Avi... Full story

  • Mn Pilots Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman, President Minnesota Pilots Association|Feb 1, 2020

    One of the nice things about cold weather is the opportunity to sit down on the couch, or in our favorite chair, and think about things we would like to do when the weather warms up, when spring finally gets here. I think that is true for people of all walks of life in Minnesota, but particularly true for aviators. At this time of the year, we start to think of how nice it will be to go out to the hangar and get the aircraft out without scooping/pushing snow, without needing to preheat the... Full story

  • Mn Pilots Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman, President, Minnesota Pilots Association|Jan 1, 2020

    We are just coming off of a good year in 2019, looking forward to an even better year in 2020! One of the things I like most about the Holiday Season that we just experienced is the “Spirit of Giving and Friendship” that goes along with that time of the year. While there were office parties galore, there were also gatherings of pilots and aviation friends who had a chance to reflect over the past year, a chance to experience the terrific thing we have with this brotherhood and sisterhood in avi... Full story

  • MnPilots Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman, President Minnesota Pilots Association|Dec 1, 2019

    The Holiday Season is upon us and with this wonderful time of the year comes the opportunity to enjoy time with our coworkers, our friends, our families…and even our flying friends. We know that it is a time of giving, not only gifts to signify our affection for loved ones, but also by giving the gift of time spent with one another. The older I get the more I realize that our time is one of my most valuable assets, and choosing to spend time with others is quite a gift in itself. As this year d... Full story

  • MnPilots Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman|Nov 1, 2019

    We have so much to be thankful for as aviators in Minnesota, and it is a pleasure to be able to do so as we look back on 2019. We are so grateful to the City of Buffalo, Minnesota, for hosting the 2019 Great Minnesota Aviation Gathering (GMAG). First, this move to this great airport would not have been possible without the encouragement of Mike Wiskus, who owns West Metro Aviation in Buffalo. Mike continues to serve as a board member for the Minnesota Pilots Association. Mike came to our rescue... Full story

  • Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman, President Minnesota Pilots Association|Oct 1, 2019

    I hope you were able to read the September installment of Hangar Flying, but if you didn’t please retrieve that issue of the Minnesota Flyer. In that article I used Charles Dickens first sentence of “A Tale of Two Cities” and modified it from “They were the best of times. They were the worst of times” to, “They were the best of airports. They were the worst of airports” and I pointed toward one airport, KDTL, as a best airport. I also alluded to an unnamed airport that was on the other end of... Full story

  • Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman, President Minnesota Pilots Association|Sep 1, 2019

    They are the best of airports, they are the worst of airports. What makes an airport the best? Or the worst? There surely are a wide variety of airports in Minnesota, each with not only different local sights to see, each with different configurations of runways and ramps, each with different amenities. We are fortunate to have the Minnesota Department of Transportation-Aeronautics overseeing our airports, making sure that safety is integrated into the facilities, but once you get past quality... Full story

  • Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman, President, Mn Pilots Association|Aug 1, 2019

    I would like to take a few moments to give thanks to those who are part of our airborne emergency medical service teams. The recent tragedy at Brainerd brought forth the reality that the flight crew puts themselves in harms way to make a difference in our lives. Living in the great Country that we do makes us somewhat oblivious to the services that are provided by our medical system. It isn’t a perfect system, I understand. Things can and do go wrong. In cases such as the Brainerd tragedy someth... Full story

  • Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman|Jul 1, 2019

    Just like a good neighbor, Minnesota pilots are there. This modified insurance company jingle came to mind recently when Minnesota pilots were asked to “show some love” for a small airstrip in northern Wisconsin. The Cornucopia airstrip (WI23), located on the south shore of Lake Superior just southwest of Madeline Island, has been in existence for many years, but was somewhat forgotten until recently. Members from the Recreational Aviation Foundation (RAF), led by Jeff Russell, adopted the air... Full story

  • Maintaining Connections

    Randle Corfman|Jun 1, 2019

    There are many benefits of being a member of the aviation community in Minnesota, or any other state for that matter. Of course, there is the fact that we have the privilege to fly, to rise above it all, escaping the bonds of earth to soar with the eagles. There is also the blessings of being able to enjoy the friendships and acquaintances made through aviation. We have the usual suspects at the airport who hang around the hangars, ready to fly or tell those flying lies that we have come to... Full story

  • GMAG 2019 Another Success

    Randle Corfman|May 1, 2019

    We are just coming off of another successful Great Minnesota Aviation Gathering, and we think that our event serves as an opportunity to oil the rusty spots of our flying skills. Let’s face it, for me to get the plane out of the barn when it is cold and snowy takes a substantial reason for doing so. The older I get the greater the inertia that I must overcome to take to the air. The GMAG is a time for renewing many friendships with those who share the flying bug…who enjoy the thrill of tak... Full story

  • GMAG is nearly here!

    Randle Corfman|Apr 1, 2019

    The 6th Annual Great Minnesota Aviation Gathering (GMAG) is nearly here and with that comes a great deal of activity by members of the Minnesota Pilots Association and our supporters, activity that is necessary to make the event a continued success. Each of our previous five GMAGs have been different, as we have been test pilots, so to speak, to see how best to fly this baby! This year will be particularly different in that the event will be held outside of the MSP Class B veil at the Buffalo... Full story

  • See you at GMAG 2019

    Randle Corfman|Mar 1, 2019

    I have taken time to begin reading Robin Olds “Fighter Pilot” and found a quotation that I feel certainly applies to my experiences with aviation people. He wrote “The brotherhood of pilots impressed me as much as the thrill of flying itself”. It is with this in mind that we prepare for the 6th Annual Great Minnesota Aviation Gathering (GMAG) to be held on Friday and Saturday, April 26 and 27, at the Buffalo Municipal Airport (KCFE). This preparation centers around the brotherhood and sisterh... Full story

  • See you at GMAG

    Randle Corfman, President Minnesota Pilots Association|Feb 1, 2019

    One of the things I really enjoy about those who share my interest in aviation is the ingenuity, kindness and willingness to be of assistance that the vast majority possess. These great attributes certainly apply to those who have made it possible for us to hold the 6th Annual Great Minnesota Aviation Gathering (GMAG) at the Buffalo Municipal Airport (KCFE) on Friday and Saturday, April 26 & 27, 2019. You may recall that we have been in search of a venue which would appeal to our members. With... Full story

  • New Year, new beginnings!

    Randle Corfman, President, Minnesota Pilots Association|Jan 1, 2019

    With the New Year comes the hope that the coming year will be even better than the last. It gives us the opportunity to stop, look back, and put things into perspective. We make some New Year’s resolutions, and often check off a few items from our bucket list. The New Year presents some distinct challenges for the Minnesota Pilots Association. One of the primary efforts has been bringing pilots and aviation enthusiasts together at the Great Minnesota Aviation Gathering (GMAG). The GMAGs have suc... Full story

  • Aviators support aviators

    Randle Corfman, President Minnesota Pilots Association|Dec 1, 2018

    Happy Holidays to each and every one of you! What a terrific time of year, as we celebrate with family and friends and as we look back upon 2018 and count our blessings and our challenges. The Board members of the Minnesota Pilots Association are thankful for those of you who have become members or who have renewed membership in our organization. Thank you. While Thanksgiving Day has come and gone, we have the chance to thank people throughout the year for their good deeds, for helping to make... Full story

  • MnPilots Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman, President Minnesota Pilots Association|Nov 1, 2018

    As pilots who enjoy the priv- ilege of ight, I think we have to be very vigilant as we strive to at least maintain the freedoms our predecessors left for us. This is particularly true as those of us who are in general aviation sometimes feel that us “little guys and gals” may play second ddle to corporate and commercial aircraft operators. I am not just talking about how the airspace is being con- trolled, but also how our avi- ation resources are being as- signed. Recently, Jim Peterson, tre... Full story

  • MnPilot's Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman|Oct 1, 2018

    In preparing this column monthly now for a few years I tried to minimize discussion of personal relationships, focusing instead on concepts and concerns that affect members of the Minnesota Pilots Association. I am going to make an exception this month to provide what is for me an emotional tribute to an individual who played a very supportive role in the founding of the Minnesota Pilots Association, working behind the scenes at a number of levels to promote our success. This delightful person,... Full story

  • Pondering fuel prices

    Randle Corfman|Sep 1, 2018

    A joke question that I have heard more times than I care to admit, when posed to a student, is “What keeps an airplane in the air?” The answer: “Money”. One of the most convenient technology advances for those of us who fly piston driven aircraft is the self-serve pump. Those of my vintage (old geezer) recall the days when we had to plan ahead when making a cross country trip, making sure that the fixed base operator (FBO) was open at the time we would be needing fuel and, God forbid, if we l... Full story

  • Connecting through aviation

    Randle Corfman, President, Minnesota Pilots Association|Aug 1, 2018

    I just returned from six days of flying and aviation fun, having taken advantage of the chance to fly into New Holstein, Wisconsin, and camp with our friends at and to participate in the New Holstein Short Field Takeoff, Landing and Flour Drop exhibition. There were many there from Minnesota and literally from every corner of the United States. We endured days of rain, spending many hours under a pavilion, visiting and meeting new friends. It was quite amazing that we really... Full story

  • Let it be me

    Randle Corfman, President, Minnesota Pilots Association|Jul 1, 2018

    We are fortunate to have a wonderful airport system in Minnesota, thanks to a number of key organizations. Let’s face it, our airports didn’t just happen. I am concerned we take for granted what it takes to “make” an airport. Most of our airports started out as “airfields”, which pretty much consisted of an open area out away from farmhouses and other buildings so as to minimize obstructions. With time came the realization that creating hard surfaces offers some distinct advantages to the pilo... Full story

  • MnPilots Hangar Flying

    Randle Corfman, President Minnesota Pilots Association|Jun 1, 2018

    This summer has been a very bittersweet one for me, as we are not able to see two of our grandchildren as much as we have in the past. My wife and I received a phone call from our son asking if we would be around on a Sunday in April and we said sure, come on over. The news we learned from them was pretty devastating to us in that they decided to move from Minnesota to Texas. this meant that our 5-year old grandson and three and a half year old granddaughter would no longer be living just a few... Full story

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