Home Community Lifestyle Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 1044 at Mogollon Airpark receives grant from...

Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 1044 at Mogollon Airpark receives grant from the Rural Innovation And Activation Network (Rain)

Overgaard, AZ
on & Carolyn Middleton donated the above Kitfox plane to the EAA Chapter 1044 for the Youth Build Project.

Overgaard, AZ 9/26/2017 – EAA Chapter 1044 is pleased to announce it has received a $3,000 grant from the Navapache Innovation Council of RAIN. These funds will support our Chapter’s Youth Education Program and our new Youth Build Project.


EAA Chapter 1044’s Youth Education Program seeks to inspire local Heber-Overgaard youth through the excitement of aviation.  We have been flying kids through EAA’s national Young Eagles Program for over 20 years.  During that time, EAA pilots have given hundreds of local kids aged 7-18 their first flight in an airplane.


Our newest project in the Program is our Youth Build Project.  The goal is to have local youth restore or build an airplane under the mentorship of our experienced members.  This will enable them to gain skills they may never have been exposed to before, which in turn could influence their future career path.


Chapter members Jon & Carolyn Middleton have donated an airplane to be restored.  We’ve received a welder from EAA National and now the Navapache RAIN Council has given us a grant of $3,000 to use towards materials and tools to start the restoration.


EAA Chapter 1044 was able to demonstrate, in our grant application, that our Youth Build Project encompasses facets of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).  The RAIN grant hopes to expand informal education opportunities in rural areas of Arizona.


Chapter Vice President, Curt Randoll is passionate about this project.  “It’s been my dream to do this since I first heard about Teen Building Projects several years ago.”  He went on to state that, “There are limited career options for our youth here in Heber-Overgaard.  We want to give local kids learning experiences that could open their eyes to careers beyond what is available here.”


Chapter President, Larry Driver continued, “Under the mentorship of our members and members of the local community, our participants will learn how to repair aircraft, which includes working on engines, learning about fabric coverings and many other skills.  Once this project is done, we will sell the aircraft and use the proceeds to fund another.  Our long term goal is to have one plane available to fly while another is being built.”


Thanks to the Navapache Regional Innovation Council of RAIN for approving our grant.  This money goes a long way to help us get the project started.


If you know of any local youth interested in joining our Youth Build Project, please have them contact us at eaa1044@gmail.com. For more information on EAA Chapter 1044 and our Youth Education Program, please visit our FaceBook page or our website at eaachapter1044.org.


About the plane:

It is a Model 1, serial number 67. According to Middleton, “The kit took 2 1/2 years to completion in September 1988. It has folding wings so I was able to keep it in my shop at home and trailer it to the airport when I wanted to fly. Most of its life it has been flown locally, however, in 1992 I flew from California to Idaho for a Kitfox Fly-in. It cruises at 75 mph and can takeoff and land in short distances. It has two seats. I gave rides to many friends and family, including a nephew who eventually became an Army helicopter pilot. I hope many more will benefit from the experience of building/rebuilding and flying it.”


More About RAIN

We know that at the heart of innovations is an understanding of Science and Engineering – the paths a mind can go to solve problems or explore interesting ideas. Innovation has been a cornerstone of America for hundreds of years. But there is very limited data on the perception of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math and its impact from a rural perspective. Rural communities are often under-represented in the realm of contemporary STEM subjects, often because they are geographically isolated and residents of these areas cannot travel to cities where there are cutting edge informal (outside of the classroom) learning opportunities. The Rural Activation and Innovation Network (RAIN) grant hopes to expand informal education opportunities by offering grants to organizations within four rural regions of Arizona: Cochise county (southeastern Arizona), Graham and Greenlee counties (eastern Arizona), the Verde Valley of Yavapai county (central Arizona), and southern Navajo and Apache counties (White Mountains of Arizona).  Each Regional Innovation Council (RIC) has received $200,000 in grant money to award within their area over the next four years.  The Navapache Innovation council, which is located in the White Mountains, awards quarterly grants through a competitive application and review process.


RAIN is an Innovations in Development project funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF DRL #1612555). This program is being spearheaded by Arizona State University, Arizona Science Center, The Arizona Tech Council, and the Lifelong Learning Group of COSI. For more information on RAIN, visit their website at www.4azrain.org or their Facebook page at #nsfrain.