Drone Pilot SchoolGrand Ledge aviation club raises money for charities

September 13, 2021by helo-10
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GRAND LEDGE, Mich. — Sunday was the first annual CARDS Fun Fly charity event.

CARDS, which stands for the Capital Area Radio Drone Squadron, is a group of about 90 local aviation enthusiasts.

Lauren Shields 2021

CARDS First Annual Fun Fly Charity Event

“We try to promote the hobby of remote control flying,” said Michael Pollock, event manager. “We’re very interested in it and think it’s kind of good if we attract more people, so we always invite spectators to be out here any time that we’re here. We’re also very active with teaching people that want to consider learning it, and we have ways that they can at least try it out and decide before they start investing money in it.”

CARDS Event Manager Mike Pollock

Lauren Shields 2021

CARDS Event Manager Mike Pollock

“The thing about a club like this, which is really nice, is if you’re here long enough, you really see different styles of flying, and if you look around right now, you see so many different kinds of airplanes from World War I, World War II, sport pattern ships, aerobatic airplanes, 3D airplanes,” said John Smith, an RC pilot and CARDS member.

John Smith got his first remote control plane when he was 14

Lauren Shields 2021

John Smith got his first remote control plane when he was 14

Pollock said there’s a “huge social element” of being a member of CARDS.

“Mike took it upon himself to say, ‘Let’s do something for charity,'” Smith said.

John Smith teaching the younger generation about RC planes

Lauren Shields 2021

John Smith teaching the younger generation about RC planes

The club celebrated its 50th anniversary last year. Sunday, roughly 50 spectators joined the club at its airfield in Grand Ledge to watch planes fly through the air and raise money for both Ele’s Place in Lansing and the Alzheimer’s Association.

“They came out here earlier to help pass out brochures, answer questions,” Pollock said. “An event like this is actually very valuable to them because of the visibility, getting the word out, having people learn about what they do.”

RC plane

Lauren Shields 2021

RC plane

Registration to fly cost $10 per pilot, and Pollock said 24 pilots registered. All proceeds, along with donations collected throughout the day, will go directly to the two charities.

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