Fellow aviators and friends! Hello and good day. Like many of you in the Greater Miami Valley, I am anxiously awaiting for the fair weather days of Spring! Spring brings us tranquility and warmth with each morning sunrise as we calmly open our hangar doors. Spring gives us all an opportunity to once again smell the freshly cut airfield which quickly gives way to the fragrance of wild flowers blooming just a few hundred feet below our modern day flying machines.
Spring also allows us an opportunity to dust off our flight bags, polish our windscreens, and practice our repertoire of flying fundamentals before taking off on new flying adventures. This ritual, afforded to fellow aviators across the globe, provides us a chance to renew and reflect on the joys of breaking the constraining bonds of Earth and soaring with eagles high above!
As I look around with every passing year, aviation is arguably becoming a passing art of sorts. Our opportunity to share the simplicity of flight through our skies above is slowly slipping away. With continued automation and the pace of current technology, aviation has become less a phenomenon of human ingenuity and more of a method towards improving societal utility. With each passing generation, the wonder and simplicity of flight, the interest in how art and science blend thousands of years of human imagination, determination, and creativity becomes increasingly irrelevant.
This is why the Wright Seaplane Base, Inc. (WSBI) has answered that call to help foster a future generation of aviators. WSBI has committed to funding the first annual WSBI Air Camp USA scholarship opportunity. This scholarship opportunity is made available to the students of West Carrollton Middle School. What is Air Camp USA, you ask? Well, it’s a week-long adventure put on by Wright State University. This summer program inspires students to new heights of scholarship, leadership, and citizenship while they experience the thrill of flight and study the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) of aviation and aeronautics.
It is our hope to inspire a renewed sense of pride in the aviation history held by West Carrollton, OH, a small community approximately 4 miles southwest of downtown Dayton. Many of the residents and community leaders in West Carrollton have lost touch with the fact that Orville Wright used the banks of the Great Miami River. The Great Miami River slowly flows through their modern day community and harbored one of the first “seaplane” bases in America. Orville Wright used the banks of the Miami River between 1912 and 1914 to launch over 100 test flights of the Wright Hydro-Aeroplane and Aeroboat prototypes. This local aviation history helped contribute to the modern day seaplane technology and is something WSBI feels can become a topic of educational discussion with the students of West Carrollton and the other Dayton area STEM programs. It is our hope that this locally focused scholarship program can help inspire new ideas in the field of aviation, aeronautics or even fluid dynamics. We won’t know unless we try. Help us give wings to tomorrow’s “impossible dream!”
If you would like to help us inspire a future aviator or innovator, we encourage you to donate to our WSBI Air Camp USA Scholarship Fund. You may do this online using our PayPal link located at our website.