By STEVE DYE
The Ponca City Aviation Foundation’s monthly Fly-In Breakfast at the Ponca City Regional Airport will be held this Saturday, February 2.
All area residents are invited to attend, as arriving in a land-based vehicle is also more than acceptable. The entire community is invited to attend, and enjoy a delicious breakfast while helping area children.
In addition to a bountiful breakfast at a pittance of a price for only $8 for adults and $4 for children, attendees can watch as planes land and take off as pilots from near and far fly in to feast.
Visitors are always guaranteed to see new and unique aircraft at the Ponca City Fly-In, with attendance ranging from 50 to 150 planes each month. Airplanes are lined up for public viewing and breakfast is available and served by donation.
For a small fee, visitors can feast on scrambled eggs, grilled sausage, bacon, hash browns, pancakes, biscuits, gravy, fresh fruit and more while enjoying the company of aviation enthusiasts and engaging in a little “pilot talk.”
Breakfast is served from 7-10 a.m., but come early to get right in. The proceeds of this breakfast go 100 percent are funneled right back into Ponca City via scholarships for young people to pursue aviation, the Northern Oklahoma Flight Academy summer camp, to support Ponca City high school career club programs, events to help out all local schools with clothing items, and donations to other local charitable organizations primarily to benefit youth.
Earlier this month, the Foundation donated a $500 Walmart gift card to all Ponca City Public Schools to be used for classroom supplies, clothing or other student needs. The organization has given this gift to the schools for several years.
The letter from the Ponca City Aviation Foundation stated in part, “The mission of the Foundation is to help children of the Ponca City area by donating to organizations and efforts that service our goals. Our organization focuses its resources on the youth of Ponca City and the north central Oklahoma region. The money we provide is derived from the fly-in breakfasts we host on the first Saturday of every month at the Ponca City Regional Airport.”
All PCPS school principals expressed appreciation for their gift from the Foundation.
“We are so thankful for the donation that the Ponca City Aviation Foundation has given us,” said West Middle School Principal Trenton Murner. “It will greatly benefit the students of West Middle School!”
“Liberty is very appreciative to receive the Ponca City Aviation Foundation’s donation of a $500 gift card to Wal-Mart each year,” Liberty Principal Jennifer Martinez said, “We use the funds to provide student needs such as shoes, socks and clothes.
“The Aviation Club is a social club of people who enjoy aviation as a hobby or career or who just have an interest in the subject, and we have a lot of fun with it, but it’s also very important to us as an organization to support the community,” says club treasurer Bruce Eberle. “This time of year, it’s appropriate that we channel our efforts towards the local schools and helping to make sure every kid in Ponca City who needs a warm winter coat has one.”
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Woodlands Elementary Principal Tim Williams says the effort is much appreciated by the school system.
“The funds from the Ponca City Aviation Foundation and the Fly-In Breakfast helps Woodlands help kids. We are able to keep a stocked clothing closet so that when students need clothing for any reason, we have items on hand that we can give to them,” Williams says, noting the event is known all over the state. “My parents recently moved into a new home in the Oklahoma City area. When their builder found out I was from Ponca City, he asked me about the Fly-In Breakfast — saying that he frequently flies up on first Saturdays. It is wonderful that people can enjoy their hobby and help students all at the same time. We appreciate what the Fly-In Breakfast does for Ponca City schools.”
Asked about the Foundation’s contributions to Garfield Elementary, Principal Lori Cox affirms the benefits from the program actually extend well beyond the holidays.
“Oh my goodness, I don’t even know where to start,” says Cox. “We use the funds raised to keep our clothes closet stocked, buy socks and shoes, and even swimsuits for students who need them when our second graders take swimming lessons at the YMCA.”