Press "Enter" to skip to content

Local community will get chance to fire paintballs at model airplanes

Nancy Shamel readies herself to fire at a model plane as it comes down for its next pass. | Logan Ramsey,
IDAHO FALLS — A local model airplane flying club is hosting an open house for the community to come and test out their aim with a paintball gun.
The Desert Eagles Model Airplane Flying Club is hosting their open house on Saturday where people will get the chance fire paintballs at a moving target, but also buddy box fly a model airplane, enter two raffles and watch a motorized “pterodactyl” and a “flying lawn mower.”
“The best way to put it is just, it’s a hoot,” said Stu Eddins, president of the Desert Eagles, which is an Academy of Model Aeronautics affiliated club.
The open house will be on Saturday, July 15 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will be at the Desert Eagles flying field. There will be hot dogs, chips, sodas and water served at the open house.
Eddins said sometimes when he tells people about the Desert Eagle’s open house, they say, “Oh yeah, big whoop,” but once they experience it, they can’t get enough.
“That’s why we try to have people come out and actually do it, so they can experience what it’s like and they realize that it’s a lot more fun than it sounds like (to them),” Eddins said.
Eddins said once people try to shoot one of the model airplanes with paintballs, they enjoy it so much that they want to go again.
While the open house is free to attend, it costs $3 for ten shots at a plane and for one buddy box flight. The first raffle will cost $5 for six tickets with prizes like RC airplanes, gift cards and gift baskets. The second raffles costs $20 for one ticket and $100 for six tickets.
The grand prize for this raffle is a ride in a full-size Stearman airplane. Watching the flying lawn mower and the pterodactyl will be free to those who attend the open house.
The money raised by shooting the model planes goes to the Veterans Mobility Corp, a group that refurbishes wheelchairs and donates them to veterans.
Nancy Shamel, a representative of Veterans Mobility Corp, said the money raised from the open house helps them with their continuing mission to give veterans back their mobility and, “give them back their life.”
Eddins said that for many people when they look at the flying lawn mower, they think that it is a real lawn mower, and yet they’ll see it take to the sky and fly. The pterodactyl is built differently than a regular model airplane, where it actually flies by flapping its wings.
“Buddy box” airplane flying is when someone flies the model airplane with an instructor who also has a controller. If the pilot gets into a spot of trouble, the instructor can take over and fly the plane.
“It takes a lot of the anxiety away from it,” Eddins said.
A member of the club named Mike Faerber said once he flew his first model airplane after spending three months building it, he felt like one of the Wright brothers.
“It’s an amazing feeling to see something that you spent all this time on actually take off and fly,” Faerber said.
Jim Dokos, a long-time member of Desert Eagles, said different models of planes can be challenging to be at different levels of experience.
“You can find something to challenge you, whatever that is, whatever level you’re at. You can find something,” Dokos said.
One lucky winner will get the chance to fly in a Stearman Biplane with third-generation pilot James Hoff. Eddins said the winner of that raffle will be chosen at the open house and then schedule the ride with Hoff.
“It’s a significant thing, he’s going to take you up for a pretty good ride around,” Eddins said.
Eddins said that they’re thankful for G&H Paintball for supplying their event and making it possible.
Shamel said the open house is a great family-friendly event.
“The children love trying to shoot the planes, and they usually do a better job than the adults do too,” Shamel said. “It’s a family day and it’s fun and there’s food and there’s always something going on.”
The post Local community will get chance to fire paintballs at model airplanes appeared first on East Idaho News.

Be First to Comment

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *