Flying for a good cause
Published 6:09 pm Friday, October 8, 2021
Even though Halloween is around the corner, it’s never too early to prepare for Christmas.
After a two-year break, the Hampton Roads Radio Control Club is bringing back its fun fly for Toys for Tots. The Radio Control Fly-In will be from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Oct. 16 at Lone Star Park RC Flying Field, 350 Pembroke Lane.
This event collects toys for Suffolk Toys for Tots, with monetary donations going towards Suffolk News-Herald’s Cheer Fund, which works with Toys For Tots and the Salvation Army to make sure every child in Suffolk can have a toy for Christmas. This event in years past was usually held during the first weekend of November. However, the club moved it up a few weeks in hopes of enjoying some better weather.
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“Everyone is very excited,” said Mills Staylor, the Hampton Roads Radio Control Club president. “We’re excited to have good participation since it’s usually controlled by the weather. “
In the past, up to 500 folks have come to watch club members and other pilots fly their radio-controlled planes of all colors, shapes and sizes. For inexperienced flyers who still want in on the action, there is a simulator that lets them get the feeling of flying with an experienced pilot still in control.
At 11 a.m., Skydive Suffolk will have a demonstration with jumpers landing on site. In past years, the jumpers have been dressed for the season in Santa suits and elf costumes, carrying a bag of toys.
For the kids, one plane will come by with a box of candy to do the fan-favorite candy drop. Once the drop is done, kids can run up to get whatever candy they can get their hands on.
“It’s a good fun day outside,” said Staylor. “Hopefully, it’ll be a pretty day.”
Also during the event is a raffle with various prizes. Some include a Spektrum 8 channel radio, E-Flite Twin Otter airplane with floats, gift cards and more.
Over the years, the event has raised around $25,000 and many toys. During the last event, they raised $3,000 and collected five donation boxes of toys.
Pilots must pay $10 or a new, unwrapped toy. The event is free for guests, but any donation or a new, unwrapped toy will be gladly accepted from guests as well. Food concessions will also be on site.