The 2017 UPAC National Convention is over for anther year and once again, it was very successful!  More than 600 people attended over the third weekend in August. With weather issues, most used their discretion and drove in. Regardless, around 60 arrived by airplane. The winds were challenging part of the time, but the bright sunshine meant great spirits for the event!

For those who judge an event by the food, we had a winner! There’s nothing like the smell of hot coffee first thing in the morning followed by a hearty breakfast of scrambled eggs, Canadian back bacon, home-made baked beans, and toast.  Schnitzel with German potato salad was on the menu for Saturday’s lunch. Pasta with Caesar salad was the supper feature. There were also hamburgers, hot dogs, and potato chips available for those with smaller appetites.

There was standing room only for the first seminar on Saturday morning given by Nav Canada’s Rob Elford on Summer Flying. This seminar qualified for a pilot’s 2 year recency requirement.

This seminar was followed by Ken Webster of the Transportation Safety Board who told us about what the TSB is and what they do. He went on to discuss some recent investigations and what we can learn from them.

Afternoon sessions included Aviation Photography with Kevin Moore, Mike Thorp describing the trailer he built to transport his Hi Max, and Ted Rankin of Smart Pilot  discussing new initiatives for the Smart Pilot website and Transport Canada’s new  General Aviation Safety Initiative in which he and UPAC are involved.

Also during the day on Saturday, Phil Belanger of CASAIR gave a couple of sessions on the Rotax 900 series engines at his booth. John Baker of demonstrated the rebuilding of the Bing Carburetor used on Rotax 2-stoke engines, also at his booth.

The draw for the prizes donated by our generous exhibitors and supporters took place onb Saturday at noon and the Annual General Meeting took place at 4pm.

Café Les Aires was open for breakfast early on Sunday morning and Café was open until around 1 pm for those still on the field.

The Sunday morning radio license review by Gord Millar was well attended. Afterwards, twenty three pilots took and passed the exam for their radio operator’s license. The airwaves will be more crowded.

Sunday is usually departure day for those who have to be home for work on Monday. Of course this is weather dependent, and some left Saturday afternoon to make sure they could get home. Those who drove in had more departure time flexibility.  The clean up started just after lunch on Sunday.

Ticket sales for the prizes and the generous cash donations at the registration booths more than covered the convention expenses again this year.  A big thank you to all the volunteers who made the convention happen. A special Thank You goes to those pilots based at CLB2 who moved their planes out of their hangars so the exhibitors could have cover and shade to display and demonstrate their products.

A big Thank You goes to the exhibitors whose presence and contributions keep the convention interesting. In no particular order, they include:

Aircraft Spruce & Specialty
Fisher Flying Products
Aircraft Floats Manufacturing Inc
Hammond Aviation
Ikarus Flight Centre
Lift Off Aviation
Aerotrike Aviation
O2 Fly
John Baker Rotech Repair
Tiger Boys Aeroplane Works and Museum
Vortex Aviation
Aeroplanes DAR
Canadian Bushhawks Liaison Squadron
Smart Pilot
Fred Gayford Carbon Composites
Sleeman Brewery
Hamilton Aero Club
Savage Aircraft Sales Canada
MacPat Rotac
Kevin Moore

Photographers Bill MacKay and Sharen Rieger  took lots of pictures as did Kevin Moore (see above) and Gus Corujo (  )

Schenkel’s Legacy gave UPAC great prices on Canadian back bacon for breakfast, hot dogs for lunch, and pork loins which were turned into Schnitzel by a crew of volunteers overseen by Sami Fuchs. Yum!!

There was a lot of aviation eye candy at the 2017 UPAC National Convention with 5   aircraft dealers and over 60 aircraft on site. The foot launched paramotors were the smallest; a Piper Twin Comanche was the largest. There were weight shift trikes, powered parachutes and lots of three axis planes.  Aeroplanes on the field during the convention include:

3Xtrim  3X55
Aeronca K, Champ, and Chief
American Champion Citrabria
Avid Flyer
Best Off Skyranger and Nynja
Bücker Jungmann*
Cessna 140 and 150
Chinook Plus 2
Comco Ikarus
Corben Baby Ace and Jr. Ace
De Haviland Tiger Moth
Earthstar Odyssey
Fisher Dakota Hawk
Fleet Finch
Jodel D-11
Just Highlander
Kolb Mark 3
Mini Max
Piel Emeraude
Pietenpol Aircamper
Piper J3, J4, PA15 Vagabond, Arrow, and Twin Comanche
Progressive Aerodyne Searey
Quad City Challenger
Quicksilver MX, MX II, and GT400
Rans S6, S7, and S14 Airaile
Six Chuter Powered Parachutes
Sky Arrow
Spectrum Beaver RX 35, 550, and 650
Spezio Tuholer
Stits Playmate
Taylorcraft  BC12-D
Thatcher CX 4
Titan Tornado
Ultravia Pelican
Vans RV 4
Wittman Tailwind
Woody Pusher
Zenair 601, 701, Ch 200, and CH 300
Zlin Savage Cub

Weight shift control trikes included an Airborne 912X Edge and the Geo Trike along with numerous foot launch paramotors.

* The Bücker Jungmann built by Bruce Paylor and flown into the convention was the 2017 winner of Oshkosh’s Grand Champion Plans Built – Gold Lindy Award for best plans built aircraft – a spectacular plane built by a meticulous craftsman.

Note: Bruce’s Bücker Jungmann is featured in the February 2018 issue of EAA’s Sport Aviation

The 2018 UPAC National Convention will once again be on the third weekend in August, which is August the 17th, 18th, and 19th.