Last week the Museum of Flying and the Santa Monica Airport Association sponsored a field trip for all the third-grade classes at Edison Language Academy. Students toured the Museum of Flying where they discovered SMO’s important place in the history of aviation and took a special bus tour of the airport itself.

The first stop was the Observation Deck, where they got to see a special fly-by and landing of a small general aviation airplane piloted by SMAA VP Christian Fry.

Traveling around the inside road at the airport, the students saw both the FAA operated control tower and the FBO’s where the jets operate and then viewed a special demonstration of the Santa Monica Fire Department’s big crash rescue truck operated out of Fire Station #5 at the airport. The tour even included a stop at the mysterious VOR radial antenna where the eager young students learned exactly what the antenna did and why it was there. At the end of the tour each student received a pair of SMAA gold wings as a memento of their visit to the airport.

Kids interested in learning more about aviation were encouraged to participate in some of the available aviation programs at SMO. The EAA’s Young Eagles Day gives kids 8-17 a chance to go for a ride in a small airplane and a way to discover how STEM is a part of every flight. For younger kids, there is a “meet a pilot and plane” program held at the airport several weekends each month.

The Santa Monica Airport Association is an all-volunteer organization that conducts activities and projects that promote and improve General Aviation and the Santa Monica Municipal Airport. For over 25 years, the SMAA has supported youth programs and other charitable activities that benefit the communities surrounding the airport.

For more information on the Young Eagles program, visit www.facebook.com/eaachapter11. To find out more about meet a pilot and plane days, contact Josh Ochs at http://www.santamonicaairport.com.

To learn more about Santa Monica Airport, visit the Santa Monica Airport Association website at http://www.santamonicaairport.info or visit the Museum of Flying at www.museumofflying.org.

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