In an optimistic sign that shows budding confidence that the economy and General Aviation is recovering, a grand-reopening of Air Orlando was held last weekend at Orlando Executive Airport. A friend and I flew down from Leesburg in my plane, and met another Bonanza driver on the ramp at KORL.
Air Orlando, a flight school and pilot shop facility, went through a recent renovation, and they celebrated by hosting a fly in breakfast for pilots. Later in the day, an open house was held for the community at large, with lots of aircraft on display, a barbecue luncheon and slides and bounce-houses for the kiddies.
On display were all types of aircraft; everything from a new Carbon Cub at $165,000, to a fully loaded Cessna Mustang jet, at $3.5 million.
The Mustang is the newest, and smallest, Citation series jet, designed for the single-pilot. Sure, she flies at 320 knots instead of the 170 knots in my A36, but at $3.5 mil, I’ll need to stick with what I have. At those speeds, a 250 nm trip to the Abacos would take 50 minutes instead of the ususal hour and a half in the A36.
One neat addition to the Air Orlando fleet is a Robinson R-44 helicopter, and a full helicopter simulator to complement the aircraft simulator I use for IFR currency.
For larger pictures, right-click on the thumbnails: