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National Agricultural Aviation Association eNewsletter
Voice of the Aerial Application Industry
August 2, 2018
NAAA Exhibits at Record Breaking EAA AirVenture 2018

The Experimental Aircraft Association’s (EAA) annual AirVenture held in Oshkosh, Wis., July 22–39, had a record-breaking attendance of 601,000 people throughout the week, up 2 percent from the 590,000 attendees in 2017. More than 10,000 airplanes were at this year’s event, as well as 867 exhibitors. Among them was NAAA, sharing booth space with Air Tractor, Thrush Aircraft and GPS manufacturer AG-NAV.


NAAA staff and volunteers spoke with hundreds of attendees throughout the week, and over the past three years of NAAA exhibiting at Oshkosh we’ve signed up 289 prospective pilots interested in a career in ag aviation. NAAA follows up with those genuinely interested in an ag aviation career to nurture their interest by informing them of upcoming NAAA events and providing them with a yearlong subscription to Agricultural Aviation magazine.

Attendees admiring the Thrush 802 on display at the NAAA booth space.

During the week, there were also over 1,000 educational forums on aviation topics attended by 75,000 visitors. NAAA Executive Director Andrew Moore gave an educational presentation to AirVenture attendees on how to pursue a career in ag aviation, along with Lee Turnquist, 2018 NAAA Secretary, Eric Rojek of Thrush Aircraft and Nancy Andersen of Air Tractor.


In addition to recruiting, NAAA also promoted the importance of agricultural aviation to food, fiber and biofuel production, as well as to forestry and public health protection, by distributing its “Flying for Your Food” brochure.


NAAA Executive Director Andrew Moore also conducted several media interviews throughout the week. You can listen to his interview with local Wisconsin radio station WHBY here.

Some future ag pilots taking a closer look at the Thrush 510P.

Many NAAA members contributed important manpower to equip and staff the NAAA booth at EAA AirVenture, particularly staff from Air Tractor, Thrush and AG-NAV as well as AgAir Update’s Graham Lavender, Transland’s Anthonie York, Eagle Vistas’ Randy and Beverly Berry, and several past and present members of NAAA’s Board of Directors including 2018 Vice President Darrel Mertens and 2018 Secretary Lee Turnquist.


More than 10,000 aircraft arrived at Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh and other airports in east-central Wisconsin. At Wittman alone, there were 19,588 aircraft operations in the 11-day period from July 20-30, which is an average of approximately 134 takeoffs/landings per hour. This made the control tower at Wittman the busiest control tower in the world for that period of time.

The NAAA booth space was also shared by AG-NAV, a leading GPS technology manufacturer.

Looking forward to next year, EAA Chairman Jack Pelton said, “We are celebrating our 50th consecutive year in Oshkosh during 2019, so we’ll be looking back on a half-century of unforgettable highlights at Wittman Regional Airport, and planning activities that involve EAA’s hometown and its unique place in aviation history. While 2018 is barely in the record books, we’re talking to many groups and individuals with intriguing new ideas for aircraft, innovations, exhibits, and events. We’re already planning for 2019 and are looking forward to announcing features and attractions very soon.”

NAAA Vice President Darrel Mertens of Sterling, CO, explains the spray system installed on the Air Tractor 802.
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This newsletter is intended for NAAA members only. NAAA requests that should any party desire to publish, distribute or quote any part of this newsletter that they first seek the permission of the Association. The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed herein do not necessarily represent those of the National Agricultural Aviation Association (NAAA), its Board of Directors, staff or membership. Items in this newsletter are not the result of paid advertising and are only meant to highlight newsworthy developments. No endorsement by NAAA is intended or implied.
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