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HURONIA AIRPORT CELEBRATES 50 YEARS!

Memory Lane is now Runway Three-Four / One-Six at the Huronia Airport! Immediately after the second-world War aviation enthusiasts in Huronia deemed it necessary to have a community post war airfield. So, a joint endeavour created by the three founding municipalities, Midland, Penetanguishene and Tiny made it possible to purchase 263 acres at the airport's current location. An airport Commission was established, and in 1965 the humble beginnings of our community airstrip became a reality. The flying vision would soon take off!

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Growth of Huronia Airport was slow. Funds were scarce, but thanks to several dedicated operators and managers the airport grew. It actually began as a building-less facility with only a 1,500 ft turf runway. Now, the airport has a terminal building, a 3996 ft paved runway and is a home base for commercial, private and recreational operations. It can also boast being a registered Canadian airport identified as CYEE complete with VHF radio communications, wind speed instruments, radio-activated runway approach indicators and runway identification lights, as well as an airport beacon light. The airport complex includes a flight training facility, a fuel station, and now the recent introduction of a café catering service open on weekends. Although not equipped, there is also an operation garage capable to apply chemical-free commercial aircraft de-icing fluids.

Our community airport also serves industries and business in the area: Zenair Limited manufacturing small home- built aircraft; Custom Flight Components Limited designing and manufacturing kits for the Northstar bush plane; BP Flight Training; John Dion Aircraft Maintenance and Midland Instruments Ltd., two well-established Transport Canada approved aircraft maintenance organizations (AMOs), and Avionics Design Services Ltd., (DAO).

In 2010, the airport was proud to host the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain Airshow. Flying enthusiasts are everywhere! The community of Huronia is home to RCAF veterans, crop dusters, a WW II aircraft designer, recreational flyers, women pilots and a highly decorated Luftwaffe pilot. Each one has an endearing story to tell.

Huronia Airport certainly grew from the combined efforts of the Airport Commission and support from all levels of Municipal, Federal, and Provincial Government, and also by the foresight and dedication of several extraordinary individuals. Huronia Airport, along with committed volunteers usually host three annual events: COPA for Kids, a Summer FLY-In and a Winter FLY-In. In many ways, the spirit of flying defines a community that few people recognize. It is a community formed of high spirited and generous people. Huronia Airport belongs to its community. Please fly in, or drop by anytime and enjoy this amazing piece of history brought to us by those who love to fly.

By Beverley Dujay-Macdonald *Information and excerpts adapted from airport archives.

 

Youth Take Flight at Huronia Airport!

Did you happen to notice more planes than usual in the sky over Tiny, Penetanguishene and Midland on June 6, 2015? That's because the Canadian Owners and Pilot Association (COPA), held their COPA For Kids event at the communities' Huronia Airport. COPA for Kids is an aviation program that provides - free of charge - a motivational aviation experience, initiating young people to the science of flight. Forty pre-registered girls and boys between the ages of 8 and 17 had their very first flying experience in small privately owned planes such as Bellanca, Cessna, Diamond, Mustang II, Navion, Northstar and Piper aircraft.

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Event Coordinators

The youth were first acquainted with flight rules by attending a short in-class ground school lesson. Next, they were each assigned a pilot and a plane. Introductory flights around the area lasted about 20 minutes each. Afterwards, each youth was presented with a First Time Flight Certificate, a photo of themselves with their pilot, a short story about their plane and pilot, as well as an official COPA for Kids logbook.

Volunteer-Pilots (41K) Volunteer Pilots

 

The event was sponsored by the National COPA club and hosted by the local COPA club Flight 73. Leigh Rigden and Stephanie Hobbs, who are both pilots in the local COPA club, coordinated all activities for the day. This annual event is held at many airports across the country throughout the year. Huronia Airport often has a variety of activities that are open to the community.

By Beverley Dujay-Macdonald

 

 




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