May 21, 2018

May was volunteer theme month at Chapter 643 and, as many of you know, we have many volunteers in our group both in and out of aviation.  Some of our members have flown Angel Flights for many years, donated time & effort to maintain aviation museums and of course our members routinely volunteer at chapter events such as Young Eagles and others.

We were especially pleased to welcome several new Chapter members to share with us their own unique contributions to aviation.  Bill and Sophia Shay described their longstanding attendance at Oshkosh in the weeks prior to AirVenture, where they help prepare the grounds for the event and also participate during the week of the fly-in.  And Tony and Robbie DeVergillo shared stories about their own involvement with the restoration & ongoing public events with the B-25 Panchito based down in Delaware.  Without the continued contribution of time and effort by people like Bill, Sophia, Robbie and Tony, aviation would just not be as successful as it is today.  We as a chapter are richer for having people like the Shay’s and DeVergillo’s as active members.  Thanks again to all of you for what you do and for sharing with your Chapter.

Our Chapter’s first Young Eagles event for this year on April 21st at SkyManor was a great success.  We had 70 YE flights and a great turnout of ground crew and pilots from our chapter.  Great work by many, and special thanks to our YE Coordinator Frederick for leading up the planning and execution for this latest event.

Of special note, the flights by Craig Johnson pushed him up to the impressive milestone of 100 – Congratulations to him and several other Chapter 643 members who have also exceeded this milestone or who are very close to getting there.

Finally, we heard an amazing presentation from Adam Silverstein and Bruce Wodder about their recent journey to Nepal and up to the base camp at Everest.  Describing it here would not do it justice at all, but yet another incredible accomplishment from a fellow Chapter 643 member.


April 16, 2018

Our monthly meeting was well attended and we began with our Young Eagle’s Chair, Frederick Slapa, giving us a briefing on all the planning and activity for our first 2018 YOUNG EAGLES RALLY on Saturday April 21st.  Volunteer ground crew are encouraged to arrive by 7AM, with registration scheduled to begin at 7:45AM.  The event wraps up at noon and we expect a strong turnout.    Please contact Frederick with additional questions (see contacts on this website).  

Almost 30 members attended the meeting and each introduced themselves to the chapter and described aviation interests.  Everything from gliders, powered parachutes, RC models, new aircraft, antiques and experimentals were represented.  We also had a number of student pilots as well as several active builders.  We look forward to hearing updates in the weeks & months ahead. 

Plans are coming together for our September Fly-in at Sky Manor.  Please contact Adam Silverstein if you are interested in helping with advanced planning for this signature event.

A reminder for those interested in our June 2/3rd Fly-Out to Ottawa, Canada -- Don Kugler will be holding a briefing at the Sky Manor Meeting Room on May 19th at 2pm for all those interesting in participating.  Please mark down these dates.

Finally, we enjoyed a truly interesting and informative presentation titled ADVENTURES OF A MISSILEER.    Fellow member Rich Kulesa shared his experiences as a USAF Missileer based in Colorado.  Rich not only described the fascinating technical aspects of our US Nuclear Missile Defense, but he also included interesting stories and behind the scenes insights into the training and operations as a key member of our armed forces.  A very memorable and unique presentation.

For those that missed the meeting, additional summary information is available here.


March 19, 2018

This month, we began with a few updates on recent events and near term plans.  First, our very own member Sophia Shay was featured again in an article about the Chapter 643 Donald R. Gordon Memorial Aviation Scholarship.  You'll find more info in the monthly EAA Sport Aviation Magazine, page 106.  Also, our Chapter’s first Young Eagles event for 2018 is scheduled for April 21st at Sky Manor.  As usual, we expect a strong turnout and encourage as many members as possible to attend either as pilots or ground crew.  We are pleased to learn that member Rich Kulesa put his order in for a Van’s RV-14 tail kit (the first for EAA643).  We all look forward to regular updates on his build.  And finally member Neil Rosoff shared an update on his RV-9A build. 

Most of our evening involved two very interesting talks.  First, member Don Kugler gave a talk titled: US-Canada Flight Operations (click here to see part 1 & part 2).  Don briefed us on the regulations and procedures to follow when crossing the Canadian-US Border, including details on aircraft equipment, pre-flight paperwork, US & Canadian specific rules, as well as general tips that help make the transition smooth and uneventful.  Our chapter is planning a weekend fly-out to Ottawa, Ontario (CYRO airport) for the weekend of June 1-3rd. 

Finally, guest speaker Tim Lelie share with us his history and experience as a military and corporate helicopter pilot.  Tim Lelie shared with us his passion for helicopters with pictures and many interesting stories.  Among other accomplishments, Tim is a retired NJ State Police Officer, Army National Guard Helicopter Pilot, Gulf War Veteran and an active Corporate Pilot.


March 12, 2018

Ski flying yesterday, Joe P's Champ.  Click here for a short video clip.



February 19, 2018

Our February Monthly Meeting was very well attended by both existing and several new Chapter 643 members.  We agreed to target Saturday April 21st as our first Young Eagles Rally day for 2018 at Sky Manor Airport (N40).  In addition, we reviewed the results of our recent member survey and also our goals and objectives as a chapter for this year.  We aim to grow our membership, support the Donald R. Gordon Scholarship program as well as the Young Eagles program.  And we are planning for another successful Fly-In in the fall.  In addition to improving our website, we have introduced several new communications platforms including public and membership only FaceBook pages as well as our own YouTube channel.  Finally, we are starting to identify great destinations for our chapter fly-out events, which will be open to all Chapter 643 members.  You can find detailed minutes and meeting slides here. 

Our keynote speakers were Adam Silverstein and Adam Hulse, who presented a very interesting and informative overview of formation flying.  They shared the training, some of the techniques and also the challenges pilots face when safely executing formation flying activities.  Both of them have flown in Oshkosh airshows and they described the preparation and unique challenges they deal with in getting ready to participate in large mass warbird formation flights at this premier EAA event.  Whether or not you have participated in this area of aviation before, there is no doubt that its an incredibly challenging and rewarding skill set to strive for.  Thanks again to both Adams for sharing their insights with the chapter.  You can find a video recap here.


January 29, 2018

Joe Preston’s Workshop Field Trip:

We had a great turnout and a very interesting & fun morning on Saturday at Joe’s Preston’s impressive workshop.  Joe shared with us the background behind his Great Lakes Bi-plane project.  Wings, fuselage and other control surfaces in various stages of restoration were on display.  And as promised, he not only demonstrated his restoration techniques, but allowed many of us to rivet, glue and iron his new fabric skins.  A very informative and enjoyable event if you were able to attend.  If you were not, click here for a short video summary of what you missed.


January 24, 2018

Newspaper article about Sophia Shay & the Donald R. Gordon Memorial Scholarship: 
click here: North Hunterdon girl wins aviation scholarship


January 21, 2018

 Sophia Shay was awarded the first
Donald R. Gordon Memorial Scholarship.
Please see the presentation on this short YouTube video.



January 16, 2018

Our first regular monthly meeting was held yesterday.  Click here for a summary of the meeting.

This was our 2018 kickoff meeting.  We had a packed agenda with everything from sharing initial insights from our Member Survey, discussing our goals and objectives for the year, as well as awarding the first Chapter 643 Don Gordon Memorial Scholarship. We also had a presentation on Aviation Legal Issues for Pilots by guest speaker Patrick Bradley, Managing Partner Reed Smith LLC.


Monthly Chapter 643 Meeting

Monday, January 15th, 2018

Hanger on Ramp Area – Sky Manor Airport

6pm Food / 7pm Meeting

Open to ALL current and FUTURE members


Last updated: 5-29-2018