Sebring's LSA Show Draws Record-Breaking Attendance
Hanson Aviation displays its FK 12 with a Rotax 912 ULS engine at this weekend's 8th annual U.S. Sport Aviation Expo in Sebring, Florida. The next two airframes will have Lycoming AIO-233 engines.
Van's RV-12 kit draws plenty of attention at Sebring on Saturday, January 21..
January 23, 2012 - The light-sport aircraft industry's first major event of the year wrapped up a successful four-day run Sunday at the Sebring Regional Airport in Florida. The 8th annual U.S. Sport Aviation Expo experienced record attendance thanks to great weather - the best weekend of weather the event has ever had – as thousands pored over the LSA industry's latest offerings. FAA controllers reported 1,256 aircraft operations on Saturday, with 200 operations recorded in the Expo's first two hours as local pilots flew in for the day. That made Sebring the busiest airport in the state by far and put the facility on par with ORD and ATL. Friday totaled 1,091 operations.
Various aircraft exhibitors reported that many attendees were serious buyers, with several airplanes and/or kits sold. Sebastien Heintz, president of Zenith Aircraft, of Mexico, Missouri, and one of several sponsors for the event, was happy for the record attendance. "I think it was good for the FAA to see that there is still significant interest in this industry," he said.
Gleim Publications was offering free student sport pilot certificates throughout the weekend, and several would-be pilots took advantage of the opportunity.
Under new management by the Sebring Airport Authority, the Expo added some new entertainment opportunities throughout the weekend, including a wine and cheese tasting event and a model aircraft contest for youths on Sunday. During the closing ceremonies, nearly a dozen LSA left for a group fly-out to the Bahamas.
Click here for a photo gallery featuring what we found interesting throughout the weekend.