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Jake had his first flight as an aviation student at BG today. It also happened to be his first time flying a Piper, his first time flying with his new instructor, and his first official flight as an instrument student. He doesn't know yet, but I went down to the airport to watch him fly. I've been driving him to his flying lessons since he was 14, so my role has changed. And that's going to take a little getting used to.

The airport was busy, too! He hasn't had to deal with much traffic in his training up to this point, so I think that's a good thing. There was plenty in the air yesterday, and on the ground, too. He was third in line for takeoff when he first taxied out.

I suspect he did sort of an orientation flight today to familiarize himself with the Piper, the glass cockpit (also new for him), the airport, etc. And his instructor.

He landed twice, and both looked pretty smooth!

I'm looking forward to talking to him about it...and telling him I was there. ;-)

tags: bgsu flying airport pilot

photo posted by matt in Saturday, August 26, 2023

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Back in Fremont, Rex was quick to congratulate Jake, and was full of praise for his hard work and professionalism. Jake really looks up to Rex, for good reason, his congratulations really meant a lot.

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photo posted by matt in Wednesday, October 5, 2022

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Planes and pancakes this morning at one of our favorite breakfast spots—The Hangar at Albert Whitted airport in St. Petersburg. We had a great morning for it, too, with plenty of planes coming and going.

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photo posted by matt in Saturday, August 6, 2022

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The cell phone lot at Tampa International is really well done, complete with a a drive-in theater style arrivals board, restrooms, and vending machines. EV chargers, too! Puts the lot at Detroit Metro to shame. Well done, TPA!

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photo posted by matt in Thursday, August 4, 2022

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We ate dinner at The Hangar at Albert Whitted tonight. One of our favorites, but the weather threatened rain all day, which made for a slow day at the airport. So, we didn't see much activity as we ate. Bummer.

The ground crew did tug this Pilatus from a hangar across the way to a spot right in front of our car right before we left. Jake and I took a closer look through the fence.

tags: plane airport stpete florida

photo posted by matt in Tuesday, August 2, 2022

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The setup for the Thunder Over Michigan show works really well. All parking is right in front of the main field and you stay at your car for the show. They space the cars to leave a sitting area for each family next to their own car. The view is great, but your car is always available to provide a higher vantage point!

Here, Harry, Jake, and Maia (hidden behind Jake) watch the Blue Angels fly directly overhead.

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photo posted by matt in Saturday, July 16, 2022

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I was a little mad at myself for not bringing my dSLR. I was rushed a bit and didn't prepare as I should have, which forced me to shoot the entire show on my iPhone (12 Pro Max).

I was pleasantly surprised at how well it performed, though. I know the limits of the phone when I shoot with it, but encountered a new one today–heat. The phone overheated a few times, dimming the display and making shooting all but impossible.

Live and learn. I'll definitely be better prepared for next year's show.

I'm still pretty happy with the results, though!

tags: airshow airport plane blueangels iphone photography

photo posted by matt in Saturday, July 16, 2022

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Air show today - Thunder Over Michigan 2022. We were a bit worried about the weather, but it turned out to be quite nice actually. Hot, but no rain and a decent amount of cloud cover.

We tailgated a little bit before checking out the static displays.

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photo posted by matt in Saturday, July 16, 2022

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Chattanooga, Tennessee. First time I've entered a supercharger lot to find no empty spaces. I'm sure that will become more frequent in the (near?) future. It really wasn't a big deal—a charger opened after just a few minutes. So now we're happily sitting at the Chattanooga airport watching planes come and go as we charge.

And it's raining, too.

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photo posted by matt in Sunday, June 26, 2022

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I've watched Jake land countless times, and it never gets old for me. But watching him land tonight was really something. I headed over the the runway once I knew he was on the final leg of his flight. I sat there, in the darkness, waiting. Then, suddenly, the runway lit up all at once as the Pilot Controlled Lighting turned on. I couldn't see the plane yet, but knew he was close. Then I noticed his lights off in the distance and he was on the ground not long after. Seeing those lights come on as I sat there alone was truly amazing!

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photo posted by matt in Saturday, October 9, 2021

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We can back to The Hangar restaurant at Albert Whitted airport for a second time. The plane watching and the food are always great, so Renee and I were happy to come again when Jake asked.

We watched several smaller planes take off, and this Pilatus PC-12, a single engine turboprop. Several helicopters made their way in and out, too.

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photo posted by matt in Tuesday, March 30, 2021

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We had breakfast at The Hangar restaurant at Albert Whitted Airport this morning, always one of our favorite things to do while in St. Pete. Jake is always in absolute heaven while we're there. I'm sure he wishes he was flying, but I think he has almost as much fun plane-spotting.

There was quite a bit of action today, too. We watched them pre-flight this Pilatus PC-24, which Jake educated us on a bit. Pretty cool to see one of these in person–private jet rated for off-road landings, not that they needed that today.

Half way through breakfast we watched it takeoff. Looks like it was flying some couple to West Palm Beach.

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photo posted by matt in Friday, March 26, 2021

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I had a lot of time to kill while Jake was flying today. I wandered around a bit and finally set up shop in an open air hangar with a perfect view of the runway. It was cold, but what a gorgeous day.

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photo posted by matt in Saturday, February 20, 2021