AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 6

PRESIDENT'S POSITION

Cabin fever

BY MARK BAKER
President and CEO

A prescription to get out and fly

AOPA President
MARK BAKER likes
the versatility of
his Piper Super
Cub to explore the
world around him
on floats, wheels,
or skis.

6 | AOPA PILOT October 2020

SMOOTH AIR, COOLER TEMPERATURES, and the striking beauty of fall foliage make October one of my
favorite months.
While I have been able to get some good flight hours
in during the pandemic, I'm itching for even more of an
escape, and I'm not the only one. In fact, many are turning their attention to newfound hobbies, and although
certain sectors of our economy are struggling to stay
afloat, others are surprisingly thriving. Much of that has
to do with recent findings surrounding the virus.
As more information has become available, experts
have concluded that transmission rates of COVID-19
are significantly lower outdoors-one small study even
states the odds of catching the coronavirus are nearly
20 times higher inside than out. A prescription of fresh
air and Vitamin D could help explain the surge we've
seen in outdoor sports like golf, and such recreational
activities as boating, biking, and camping, which have
all spiked in popularity.
According to the National Marine Manufacturers
Association, 70 percent of boat dealers saw sales growth
in May, the strongest numbers recorded since July 2018.
National park reservations are booking up quickly, and
recreational vehicle sales are at an all-time high, especially among first-time buyers. The thirst for outdoor
activities can even be seen through Google searches for
water-related products like paddleboards, life vests, kayaks, and wakeboards, which have increased 70 to 100
percent, according to a recent news article.
With all the talk of bustling marinas and campgrounds packed with first-timers, it's clear that GA
has an opportunity to attract our own new, adventurous audiences. After all, GA flying alone or with your
family is one of the few activities where social distancing can truly be maintained. While statistics shows that
GA is faring pretty well-activity is up 15 percent above
seasonal norms and with an uptick in business aviation and private charters-we need to ensure that our
pilot population stays robust. That starts with access.
The global aviation industry, as a whole, has taken
a huge hit from the pandemic. The industry faced an
immense global pilot shortage just eight months ago;
another way to look at that was there was a tremendous demand for pilots. It was a great opportunity to
earn a living by flying, and these pilots needed to start
somewhere. Even now, as career prospects are more
uncertain, all of us in the GA industry need to encourage

more people to appreciate the passion and pursue the
idea of becoming a pilot-for pleasure or for pay.
Here's your chance to be a real ambassador for general aviation. To those who think it takes years of time
and piles of money to fly, remind them that a sport pilot
certificate only requires a minimum of 20 hours of
flight time. While there are some limitations, you can
fly some pretty awesome light sport aircraft-everything
from a Piper Cub to the ultimate amphibious adventure
machine, the Icon A5. Icon even makes a point to reach
out to nonpilots and offers training for its aircraft. And
a reliable airplane needn't cost more than a quality car.
There are other ways to lower the cost of flying.
Seeking out scholarships from industry organizations
like Women in Aviation International, the Experimental
Aircraft Association, the National Business Aviation
Association, the Organization of Black Aerospace
Professionals, and The Ninety-Nines is a great start.
Here at AOPA, we offer numerous primary and
advanced flight training scholarships. Last year alone,
we awarded 123 scholarships totaling more than $1 million. Scholarships are a great way you can help others
experience aviation, as the funds come from donations
to the AOPA Foundation. Flying clubs are another way
to save money on aircraft ownership by lowering the
costs of maintaining, storing, and operating aircraft. Not
to mention, flying clubs offer a built-in support group
from all levels of experience-just one of the many perks.
Of course, flying all starts at the local airport. I know
we still have a long way to go to make them more welcoming. I remember riding my bike to the airport as a
kid, but today, gates, fences, high security, and badge
access might deter those interested from stepping in and
talking to the locals. Welcome into our community those
who are on the outside looking in because we know that
once you're a part of the community, there's no group
more willing to lend a helping hand than GA pilots-I've
witnessed numerous examples of this in my own life.
So, as we enter another season waiting for a vaccine
to eradicate this COVID-19 mess, let's be thankful for
what we still have: the freedom to fly. Let's remind our
friends and acquaintances that, just like boating and
camping, flying is an adventure that can quite literally show you the world. And in times like these, what
more can we ask for? 
AOPA
EMAIL mark@aopa.org



AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020

Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - Intro
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - Cover1
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - Cover2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 4
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 5
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 6
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 7
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 8
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 9
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 10
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 11
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 12
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 13
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 14
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 15
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 16
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 17
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 18
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 19
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 20
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 21
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 22
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 23
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 24
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 25
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 26
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 27
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 28
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 29
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 30
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 31
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 32
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 33
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 34
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 35
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 36
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 37
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 38
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 39
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 40
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 41
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 42
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 43
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 45
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 46
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 47
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 48
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 49
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 50
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 51
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 53
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 54
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 55
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 56
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 57
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 58
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 60
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - 71
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - Cover3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - October 2020 - Cover4
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