Kids in the Basin fly high with the Experimental Aircraft Associ - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: |

Kids in the Basin fly high with the Experimental Aircraft Association

(Source: EAA) (Source: EAA)

Some lucky kids got to see Midland Saturday morning... but from 3,000 feet in the sky. The Experimental Aircraft Association flew some lucky ones with licensed pilots for an experience of a lifetime.

"When you live in West Texas, you got to make your own fun, is what they say," said Young Eagles Co-Coordinator Andrew McCarthy. 

The EAA Chapter 123 gave kids in the Basin a chance to see it, but from a different perspective. 

"It was so amazing that I almost threw up," joked third grader Taytum Marshall. "Looking down and seeing the little buildings, they looked like a little toy house, I felt like a giant."

The EAA's Young Eagles Program is the only program of its kind in the country. It teaches kids about aviation, where pilots explain the interior, exterior and operations of an aircraft.

"Aviation is one of those things you can do here, there's a lot of history in the Midland/Odessa area," said McCarthy. "We want to get kids interested because we want to grow the pilot population but we want people to have fun, that's the key."

And kids got to experience that fun by riding alongside the pilots.

"Once you look down, you're like, 'uh...' but then you get used to it," said Zachary Fox. "Once we got lower, it was perfect."

Kids got to fly in aircraft from the Bonanza, Rans and the CTSW. But for that hands-on experience, riders could even take the controls.

"The scary part is when he asked me to land it," said Macy Mayfield, 12. "It was a little bumpy because I don't know how to fly."

The program is held about four times during the year where the EAA continues to inspire the youth, teach them that the sky is the limit, but also give them a ride to remember.

"Thank you to the EAA for taking me on a wonderful flight and not killing me! I trusted them all along," joked Mayfield. "It was really fun, it made me want to become a pilot." 

The EAA Chapter 123 will be doing other events in the future. Chapter 123 is also in the works of building an experimental aircraft in the meantime and will form a flying club for it. You can keep up with them on their Facebook page here

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