TUMUT Aero Club’s new clubhouse has been cleared for take off this Sunday.
The club will hold a fly-in weekend and is expecting antique aircraft, large model aircraft, motorized paragliders and different aircraft from around the region for the official opening.
The Tumut and Adelong Times will join TV stations and NSW Rural Fire Service on Sunday, and the official opening will be conducted by Wagga Wagga MP Daryl Maguire.
It all began when club members Simon Smith and Bruce Robinson applied for a NSW Government community building grant in 2014, in order to replace their antiquated clubhouse, and received a $84,331 grant in 2015.
That the Aero Club’s facilities are used by emergency services, such as the NSW Air Ambulance, Royal Flying Doctor Service and Snowy Hydro South Care, helped the club get the grant.
However, the grant didn’t cover everything, and club volunteers donated much labour and expertise since work began on April 4 and recently concluded.
The government money was matched by the bequest of Maibry Smith, its own fundraising and sponsor grants.
The kitchen installation, carpentry, tiling and electricals were put in by licenced club member volunteer labour, as was the demolition of the former clubhouse.
Club secretary Rod Blundell mentioned members Conrad Schweinsberg (designer), Ian Young (engineer), Ash Parker, Danny O’Sullivan (club president), Ron Brayshaw, Ian McDougall, Mike Roodt and Morne Ferriera as being particularly helpful.
Club members agree the new clubhouse, which incorporates a training facility, is going to make a big difference in allowing many to achieve their dream of learning to fly, and those who already do to honing their skills.
Rhys Dobbie learnt to fly at the club and is now training to be a helicopter pilot with the Royal Australian Navy.
The Tumut Aero Club was established in 1957 and has been operating at its current location at Tumut Airport since 1966.
It currently has around 80 members and is looking to increase this number. Go to tumutaeroclub.org.au. The opening is on between 11am and 3pm on Sunday.