Pilots in Webb City are flying on cloud nine
The SkyKings RC club is a model airplane organization that focuses on one thing and one thing only -- taking it to the skies.
Accept life at face value, and it’ll fly right by you. look a little closer, and you’ll see just how beautiful a different perspective can be.
“Well I knew a guy who flew airplanes, and I saw him fly one day and I thought it looked like fun,” said Ron Richards with SkyKings RC Club. “So I just kind of got started and it kind of grew from there. You start off with the little ones and then, bigger and bigger.”
Richards has been a member of SkyKings RC for close to six years now.
“We normally have about 60 members but I think we have about 45 this year. We’re down a little bit because of what’s going on, but this is our new field. The city sold our old one, so we moved up here and this is our first season. Looking pretty good I think.”
Throughout the year, the club hosts several “Fun Flys” — where skippers and spectators from around the area come together to turn their eyes to the skies.
“Other clubs come, and we have a big crowd out here and a lot of airplanes. That’s a good time to come if you want to see airplanes.”
SkyKings RC is just one chapter of the Academy of Model Aeronautics, a national organization devoted exclusively to anything that leaves the ground.
“What our membership is interested in is anything that flys,” says Kyle Jaracz, Education Director for the A.M.A. “So everything from drones to rockets to camera drones to fixed wing aircrafts, turbine jet engines, all these things; if it’s in the air, we’re excited about it.”
With close to 3,000 member clubs and 175,000 total members, Jaracz tells us opportunity to climb the clouds is more accessible than ever before.
“The barriers to getting involved with this hobby are falling left and right. i always recommend though that you find a mentor, find one of these clubs and go into it with the expectation that you’ll learn, that you’ll crash, and the expectation that you’ll learn to build, fix, and repair, and keep flying and keep making things even better.”
Since the day Richards decided to give it a shot, he’s found that the crafting your aircraft is just as much a part of the craft.
“Actually you do more work on them at home than you do flying time. You know, building them and working on them.”
At the end of the day, sure the love of flying is unifying, but Ron says that like most things in life, it’s all about the people onboard.
“It’s just a hobby, it’s just something to do and enjoy. sometimes we don’t even fly if it’s windy or something, we’ll just come over here and sit under the shelter and visit and comradery, have a good time.”
It’s a hobby that’s earned Ron his wings, and landed him new friends along the way.