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Celebrating 25 Issues

By Dan Grunloh, Editor - Light Plane World, EAA 173888

Dan Grunloh

A little over two years ago, my life was interrupted by a phone call from Mary Jones at EAA headquarters asking me to become editor of their new online newsletter for ultralights and light-sport aircraft. It would be called Light Plane World. I couldn’t come up with a good reason to refuse, so I agreed to the position without thinking about it for very long. That was probably for the best.

I knew the publication was coming but never imagined I would be invited to be the editor. I had seen what Pat Panzera had done with Experimenter and admired his work.  The first few months, I wondered if I had made a big mistake, but now 25 issues later I see it was a good decision. Your many kind comments and feedback are the proof. I read and reply to every message sent to me via lightplaneworld@eaa.org. Don’t hesitate to contact me with your comments, questions about the articles, and story ideas. If you’ve joined Light Plane World recently, take a moment to look at our archive of articles and catch up on what you’ve missed.

There are two traits in those many feature stories that make Light Plane World so successful - and make my job fun and satisfying. Most of the features are member written, and with rare exception, by amateur writers. The real story of aviation in the voice of the participant is better in many ways and more interesting. Please don’t hold back your stories or those of your friends because of worries about the writing. If you can tell it, we can write it.

The second trait that makes Light Plane World so much fun and my job easier is simply that flying on the light side of aviation involves a lot of fun. We do lots of fun stuff with a wide variety of equipment, and our stories are generally interesting to the rest of the aviation world. I said yes to Mary Jones in part because I thought I could help publicize and promote ultralights and light planes to the outside world. The stories you send aren’t just for the participants and the newcomers. They help show the rest of the world where the economical flying fun is to be found.

I could spend all my free time in retirement rocking on the porch, strumming the guitar, and occasionally walking down to my hangar for a quick local flight. I plan to do those things anyway, but now I find myself in the delightful position of writing about my favorite hobby to a national and international readership, something I would never have imagined when I first attended EAA Oshkosh in 1981 to learn about ultralights. Therefore I’m celebrating 25 issues of Light Plane World and offering my thanks to EAA and to you the readers and writers who make it happen. I’ll see you all again next year.

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