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Vintage Discusses State of Organization at Town Hall
Initiatives include growing VAA member base
By Megan Esau, EAA Assistant Editor
July 23, 2018 - The Vintage Aircraft Association discussed the state of the organization as well as the development of a five-year plan during its annual town hall meeting at the Vintage Hangar on Monday morning.
VAA President Susan Dusenbury shared that the organization is financially sound and, after EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2018 concludes, plans to firm up the ideas for its five-year plan, which was first conceptualized by the late Ron Alexander, former VAA president.
An outline for the plan includes site improvement in the Vintage area on the AirVenture grounds, reworking the aircraft parking layout to maximize parking spots, the creation of maintenance-focused youth programs, and growing VAA’s membership base.
“Vintage Aircraft Association is the number one organization in the world supporting vintage aircraft,” Susan said, pointing out that the more members the organization has, the more talent to cultivate good ideas.
However, Susan said VAA’s membership base is already one of the strongest and most active of the EAA divisions. She reported that 5 percent of EAA’s more than 200,000 members belong to VAA, VAA volunteers make up 10 percent of the volunteers on the EAA grounds, and those volunteers do 15 percent of the hourly work during AirVenture.
A number of VAA members offered suggestions, including better support for the upkeep of vintage aircraft. Susan said EAA and VAA are currently in talks to see if certain vintage aircraft can be recategorized.
“This is just the beginning thinking stages — putting all of these vintage, unsupported airplanes into a different category to make it easier to maintain them,” Susan said.
She said this new category would likely lie somewhere between the standard and experimental categories.
On the issue of limited aircraft parking at AirVenture, Susan said beginning in 2018, with the exception of the special aircraft parking areas such as past grand champions, parking in the Vintage area will be on a first-come, first-served basis.