The 2017 Aviation Day has ended and planning for 2018 has not begun. Sign up to receive updates here. In the interim, here is a wonderful letter from our volunteer coordinator...
Paine Field Aviation Day 2017 is complete.
I am now fed, watered, home, cleaned, and catching up on some
communications and details from the day. And where in the heck did this
sun burn come from?
In addition to the resident and other beautiful aircraft,
having two active duty military fighter jets arrive and depart during the day
was a nice highlight. Over at the volunteer check-in center upon the
EA-18 arrival our crew exited the building with haste to see what the aviation
commotion was all about, as if the building were on fire.
Today’s weather was just about perfect. Many of us chatted
early today about this good fortune, discussing the likelihood of record
breaking attendance. Well we certainly had more visitors today than last
year’s Paine Field Aviation Day given that undesirable weather, however
attendance felt a bit light considering the good conditions. Having said
this please know we do not yet have admission numbers in hand. Regarding
attendance “feeling” light, I think I understand. For the past several
months we have been living in a washing machine. Today was a remarkable
improvement. Individuals and families took advantage in many compelling
ways, and given options in our region, there are many fine choices. In
spite of alternatives on how to enjoy the weather, thousands chose to join us
at Paine Field on this beautiful day. Can’t argue with that.
Volunteers from three organizations (Flying Heritage & Combat
Armor Museum, Historic Flight Foundation, and Snohomish County Airport) again
made the day. Approximately 450 strong. Think about that for a
moment. 450 individuals coming together on one day giving of themselves
for a selfless and common purpose.
One comment from a young volunteer this morning asked, “…wondering
if it's ok to volunteer all day”! He was only scheduled for the morning.
I was relieving another volunteer rather late following the end of
his shift while his replacement could not attend and me without a good
alternate plan, “How about I just keep doing this?”, was his response to the
dilemma. For a few more hours he did. This is a young man and first
time volunteer. Where do these people come from?
Attending the volunteer appreciation dinner at Historic Flight
Foundation enjoying a fine meal and even better IPA, John Sessions stood up to
say a few words. Among a number of other points John said something along
the lines of seeing many familiar faces belonging to year after year returning
volunteers, and not understanding why they keep coming back. He hit the
nail squarely on the head with this comment.
I suppose there are different motivations for each of us to
volunteer. Some of the volunteer work is, well, work. It’s not
easy. Why do so many do it with a smile on their face and say,
“yes, more please.” Before the day ended volunteers were asking about
next year. Remarkable. If those of you who asked don’t mind, I am
going to sleep first and find my voice again, then we can talk.
Again it has been my pleasure to work with, get to know a
bit better, and meet for the first time, all of you volunteers. Thank