A different kind of air show begins this weekend

Published 10:05 pm Thursday, July 9, 2009

An air show is coming to Selma, but it’s not the type often associated with the term.

Model airplane enthusiasts will test the capabilities of their aircraft, and may even teach themselves and their planes a few new tricks during Grace Lane Hobby Shop’s u-control stunt aviation on Saturday.

The workshop will be held from 9 a.m. to noon in a field near the hobby shop off U.S. Highway 80 West, across from the Andrews Tile & Floor Covering and Walker Arms buildings.

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“We want people to experience the thrill of building and flying model airplanes,” said Ken Scott, owner of Grace Lane. “Modeling is something that gets the kids involved and daddies involved, and gives them something they can say, ‘I did this. I built it. I flew it.’”

The workshop will include demonstrations of different kits and how to put them together, as well as a training session with u-control pilots. U-controlled aircraft are similar to remote-controlled planes, but are controlled by a u-shaped handle and two steel lines attached to the airplane.

Model aviation is nothing new to Scott, the former pastor of Joy Baptist Church. He became involved in model aviation when he was 14. He credits model aviation with his personal development and skills.

“I attribute model aviation to helping me develop skills in reading blueprints, building and solving problems that come up with different activities,” said Scott. “I attribute model aviation to have kept me from starting to drink, smoke, use drugs or run around with people who did.”

In 1968, he took a break from the hobby that would last more than 25 years. He renewed his love with the pastime in 1992.

“I came home one night after a visit with the Lord and turned on my television, and my television cussed me out,” said Scott. “I said, ‘What am I going to do in my spare time?”

Modeling returned to the top of Scott’s hobby totem pole, a move that led to him opening Grace Lane Hobby Shop. The shop has given him an outlet to share his passion for model aircraft and the positive effects the hobby can have.

“It’s a great way for dads to spend quality time with their children,” said Scott. “I had an older gentleman come over from Prattville. His son got him involved. He said, ‘It’s the best years that I spent with my son, flying model airplanes.’”