CalUAS day was huge. First off, the numbers don’t lie. The organizers expected about 1,500 people or so… 4,500-5,000 came to visit. That’s about one person out of every five in Ridgecrest! There was a lot of flying going on, and many very interesting presenters showing their support for the CalUAS effort at Inyoken showing what they can do and planned to do. There were a lot of UAV demonstrations in the big hangar. Too many to list them all. There was also a some manned aviation in the mix. Chip Yates made a demo flight of his record setting electric airplane, Axel Alvarez and his friends in the SoCal Ravens Formation Flying Team showed their skill too with some very nice formations in some beautiful homebuilt Van’s aircraft, Matt Menza made a few passes too in his Yakolev 52 before bringing it out to the ramp so kids could get their photos taken in it, there was an L-39 Albatross jet trainer that also came to visit.
Sierra Soaring Club represented itself at the event with a booth. We were intending to bring out a glider too, but forecasts for winds up to 50 convinced us not to test the forecast. Too bad the forecast was wrong! It was beautiful, sunny, and clear. Thankfully we had everyone there to meet all the people asking about flying gliders! Tom Wilkins, Tom Serkowski, Nick Stelmashenko, and I were answering questions, handing out brochures (Aleta, my wife, outdid herself on these and Tom Wilkins found a great printer to make them up for us), showing soaring videos, and having an outstanding time talking about flying to hundreds and hundreds of new friends! Thankfully Karen Serkowski and Aleta were there to keep everything else going behind the scenes and bring us all lunch! It was a great event and I think the club did very well for itself promoting gliding and hopefully convincing several people to come out and fly with us.