Day One of the 2013 Copperstate Fly-in at the Casa Grande airport south of Phoenix, Arizona was relaxed but attracted a number of visiting airplanes - as well as a good number of experimental aircraft and hardware vendors. In the tradition of the old EAA regional fly-ins, the atmosphere is much more laid back than at the major shows in Lakeland or Oshkosh – if you want to really take the time to look at an airplane or an EFIS and get the attention of the factory Rep for some quality questions and answers – this is a good place to do it. Forecasts are for continued great weather throughout the weekend.
Because of government cutbacks due to sequestration, there is no temporary control tower or special NOTAM procedures for departures or arrivals this year, yet Kitplanes Editor Paul Dye flew his RV-3 in at about noon using standard uncontrolled field procedures and reports that the arrival was smooth and the traffic light. More traffic is expected on Friday and Saturday, so arriving pilots are asked to keep their head on a swivel, announce their positions and intentions, and above all, stick to standard traffic patterns and procedures to keep everyone on the same page.
There were close to a dozen aircraft kit vendors on the field at the end of the day, and the booths in the vendor tent are close to full – so if you are located in the southwest part of the US – or looking for a long cross-country in good weather – stop in and shop for your next project.