Crowds flock to Craig for 2nd Aviation Day

Published 6:45pm Saturday, November 9, 2013

Aviation enthusiasts experienced aircraft flight firsthand Saturday during the 2nd annual Aviation Day at Craig Field.

People of all ages attended the event sponsored by Wallace Community College-Selma and The Black Pilots of America. The event is in conjunction with the college’s exploration of aviation-related programs.

“It provides the community with more information regarding aviation,” Dr. Millicent Woods, an event organizer for Aviation Day, said. “It’s an interactive day that gives insights to aviation and the possible opportunities.”

The day began inside a hangar, where visitors learned more about the aviation field and recognized The Black Pilots of America, which is a non-profit flying organization designed to train the youth to participate and advance in various types of employment within the field of aviation.

After the ceremony, the crowd was directed outside to the runway where they received individual pre-flight check demonstrations and were taught how an airplane flies.

Some, mostly children, also had the opportunity to climb aboard the parked planes.

It was Wilsunya Marshall’s first time bringing her son Marcus to Aviation Day.

“I wanted him to get the experience of seeing how the airplanes work,” Marshall said.

For some residents, Aviation Day was a chance to learn more about an occupation they have an interest in.

Tomeko McPhillips said her teenage son Cole, has shown an interest in becoming a pilot, and wanted to expose him to it first hand.

McPhilips said what attracted him to aviation is the way planes take flight.

“I like how they take off the ground,” he said.

After the demonstrations, professional pilots gave the crowd a show. Coordinated by The Black Pilots of America, planes took flight above the Craig Field runway, disappearing in the clouds before returning to the runway.

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