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SMALL BUSINESS WEEK: Lacombe Flying Club soaring to new heights

Club nominated for Non-profit of the year
Lacombe Flying Club President Jon From said it was honour for the Club to be nominated for 2019 Non-Profit of the Year by the Lacombe and District Chamber of Commerce. (Todd Colin Vaughan/LACOMBE EXPRESS)

The Lacombe Flying Club, who operates the Lacombe Regional Airport, has been nominated for the Lacombe and District Chamber of Commerce Non-profit of Year.

Club President Jon From said the club is flattered to to be nominated and credits the clubs commitment — particularly on some larger scale project — for the success. One of those major projects was the construction of a north-end parking lot

“It is getting to be quite the jaunt to the north end, so in a effort to curb vehicular traffic on taxiways we put a west access in half way up the airport,” he said.

The commitment of the Flying Club members and their individual expertise allows the difficult work of running a municipal airport to be easier.

“Everyone has something they are good at. We try to use those abilities,” he said.

The Flying Club always makes an effort to connect with the community, particularly with the Fly-in Breakfast and Twinkle Tours.

The Fly-in Breakfast allows the community to come in and get acclimated with the airport and aircraft, while the Twinkle Tours allows the club to give back to local charity.

“We came up for the idea of the Twinkle Tours, it got off to a great start and it has been a roaring success every year. We will be doing it again and I will be taking bookings on Nov. 25,” he said.

The continued growth of the airport stems from a rock-solid relationship with the City of Lacombe and Lacombe County, and also the Province of Alberta.

“Everyone wants to see the airport succeed and have moderate growth. We all working towards that same end,” he said.

From said the airport will continue to put their focus on being the best small airport, rather than being a poor large one.

“What we are trying to do is appeal to the general aviation fliers: Guys who want to fly their airplanes and people that want to learn how to fly,” he said.

Going forward the airport will need to resurface their runway, which hasn’t been paved since 1975.

“We want to come up with a plan to resurface the runway and currently that hinges on the provincial government providing 75 per cent of the cost. We are hoping the provincial government doesn’t do away with those grants,” From said.

He added, “We are blown away being nominated. It feels pretty good and it is a great honour to be thought of in that group.”

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