Sunday, November 11, 2007

Party and Meeting Report

Thanks to everyone who made it out - all forty of you! By my count this was one of our biggest turnouts ever, with at least 25 local pilots, 2 visiting pilots, and 13 spouses, family members and friends. Not to mention a gaggle of dogs and cats! Thanks again to Rich for arranging such a nice venue for us. And thanks again to Dorothy for shopping and cooking. A quick recap of our meeting agenda follows.

Peter's heartfelt nomination of our club has resulted in the selection of our association as the 2007 USHPA Chapter of the Year. Also, Bob was selected to receive a Pilot Commendation award. We have a great bunch of pilots here and I am very proud to see our group receive this kind of recognition. Look for news of both awards in the upcoming USHPA magazine.

We introduced our most recent new pilots (Doug and Nicky) and welcomed two visiting pilots who are wintering here (Peter the Czech, and Summer the Oregonian).

We reported on recent site improvements. Thanks to Dave for the carpet at Juice. Dave and Bob will also be working on erosion control at Crazys. Thanks to Dale and the HHA for the new Makapuu LZ Windsock, and to Phil for all his work on the beautiful plaque for Johan we installed at Cactus. The ongoing Makai Pier wind sensor project is awaiting the return of Submarine Steve and a renewed troubleshooting effort by Jeff McDaddy as time permits. We discussed further expenditures for this project but we decided to wait until we have more details on costs before going further.

Since this is our last meeting of the year, we recounted some memorable milestones from this past year: January's Big Island Trip, February's repack clinic (a great idea considering we saw three emergency reserve deployments this year), our best ever west side thermal clinic in March, the tragic loss of our friend and top pilot Jimmy Hall in May, our biggest ever pilgrimage to the Oregon competitions in June, and the fun Kahana Air Raid fly-in in September.

We discussed our recent problems at Kualoa Regional Park. Park personnel (including the park manager) have made it clear that we are no longer welcome to practice our ground handling there, even in the huge empty expanses of fields that lie downwind of their power lines. The park has recently cracked down on kite flying at the park because of kites getting caught in power lines, and we have been mistakenly identified by park personnel as kite flyers. In discussions with the park manager, we have explained that we are actually regulated under city policies as hang gliders. But we know that those policies require our association to have a permit for any park in which our members want to engage in "hang gliding activities". So they have asked us to seek a permit to include Kualoa Regional Park, and they have also threatened to call the police if we continue to practice ground handling there without a permit.

After a long debate on the subject, we agreed to investigate restarting the process of seeking a permit for our activities in various city parks - a process that was begun in 2003 but languished in the city's office of corporate counsel, and was apparently forgotten when the new city administration took over. Thanks for your patience with what may well be a lengthy process in our quest for legal status with the city. In the meantime, if you are willing to take your chances with enforcement at Kualoa, I encourage you to please be respectful and courteous in all your dealings with city personnel. It will only help our situation.

We held our annual election of directors. About a dozen pilots were nominated, but the status quo won the day: the directors from 2007 were all re-elected! Thanks to my fellow directors for all their hard work this year, and welcome back for another year of challenging and rewarding effort.

Waivers were signed and dues collected from members for 2008. If you haven't already, please take a moment to download, sign and hand/send in your waiver before the year begins. Thanks!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Awesome job Dorothy, those were some ono grinds! Thanks, Frank.