Chapter Update – May 2023

Quarterly Checkpoint for Chapter Members

The Chapter Board members wanted to provide an update of Chapter activities and compiled the following:

+ First, the really good news! EAA National has rated EAA240 as GOLD level stats for 2022, reflecting the range on activities initiated by the Board, and each of the Pancake Breakfast, Young Eagles, VMC/IMC and Events teams have put together and executed on in the past year. Special call-out to our Board members who drive the processes and activities with enthusiasm and commitment in support of our Chapter and its membership. We’ll publish more on this major accomplishment on our web site soon.

+ Our Membership levels continue very strong, now at 163 paid members for 2023. This level greatly exceeds similarly situated Chapters nationwide and regionally and is an outcome of the activities listed above, plus our unique facility and workshop, along with our close engagement with the airport management, local flight school and the Brandywine Soaring Association.

+ Chapter financials remain in strong state through the combination of membership renewals, topped-up by our Pancake Breakfast fund-raiser fun events, hangar workshop space rentals and through generous member and public donations. The details of our financials are always to be found at the ‘Members Only’ area of our web site, update after each Board Meeting.

+ The Board has committed to holding THREE technical events in the fall of 2023; a Welding Class (delayed from 2022), a Riveting Class, and a Fabric Class. We’re seeking volunteers to manage and oversee these classes from amongst our talented and experienced membership. More on this topics, including commitment dates etc in the coming weeks.

+ We changed the format of our Membership Monthly Meetings, removing the regular coverage of ‘business’ items, such as financial, fly-outs etc. We did this based on feedback – see, we DO listen!, and signs are that the changes are well received. We continue to focus on quality speakers, relevant topics and FOOD! The next meeting is Monday June 5th, with a cook-out at 6pm (bring dessert or donation) and guest speaker on the timely topic of FAA Medical Certification at 7pm. We wrap at 9pm.

+ IMPORTANT READ: Less positive and of growing concern to the Board is that, despite these impressive accomplishments, membership volunteers are getting very hard to find, and increasingly we find we’re VERY short-handed and having to cancel Chapter events. Our May Pancake Breakfast was operated by a minimal volunteer staffing, with just two people preparing the entire hangar late Friday afternoon. We got it done. Just. And then we served just 62 breakfasts, 10 of which were our volunteers! Attendance levels at our Pancake Breakfasts, particularly from our 163-strong membership was very disappointing and upsetting, given the purpose, effort and costs involved. Recent Young Eagle Flights have experienced the same shortfall in volunteers. Please remember, all – ALL – we do is accomplished entirely by volunteers, often the same members time-after-time. We’ll be asking for increased membership volunteers engagement in all our activities, either for help in set-up and operation, or as a participating ‘customer’. Without it we’ll be doing less, and less. Your feedback and insights on this topic would be of value to the Board, please let us know what you’re thinking here. And, thanks again to those that DO volunteer so regularly, without you we could do none of these things!

+ Maintaining our Hangar facility is critical and requires our collective ongoing attention and effort. A main project for 2023 is to repaint the exterior staircase and this we hope to complete – WITH YOUR HELP – on Saturday June 10th, 8:30am. With good levels of volunteer support we can get it done in a day, and then enjoy a cook-out as we admire our work! Sign up here for even for a few hours of volunteering.

+ On Saturday July 1st we’ll be reseting our security arrangements at the hangar and web site, with new access codes, new access keys and new web site passwords. These will be distributed and limited to fully-paid members and will be communicated nearer the time.

As always, updates and additional activities will be posted at the Chapter web site.

Congratulations again on achieving the EAA National GOLD Award 2022!

EAA Chapter Board Members and Officers:

Bud Swenson (Acting Treasurer, Chapter Secretary, Young Eagles lead)
Paul Dolan (Membership Director, creatives)
Octavian Codreanu (VP, Meetings & Fly-Outs)
John Leslie (Hangar Manager)
Chuck Shipman (Pancake Breakfast events)
Mike Parry (President, Communications)