Thursday, December 29, 2016

Congratulations to Sugarloaf Member Brenda Tibbs - AOPA's Best Flight Instructor 2016!

Frederick woman wins AOPA's best flight instructor

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Tempe Huscha thinks her grandmother flies all the planes.
In fact, the first time the 4-year-old saw a plane in the sky and was in the same room as her grandmother, Brenda Tibbs, Tempe looked at her grandmother with a face of confusion.
“She didn’t know what was going on,” Tibbs said. “My daughter tells me she always points and says it’s Grandma” in the sky.
Tibbs doesn’t fly all the planes. But she’s earning quite the reputation for teaching people to fly them. She was selected by the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association as the best flight instructor in the country in 2016 for her Bravo Flight Training school at Frederick Municipal Airport.
“That was very surprising,” Tibbs said. “But I think I just have wonderful students. I love what I do, and I think it helps that I keep them active outside of just training.”
Tibbs started the business in the spring and officially opened in August. For the first couple of months, she operated out of her car, until she eventually leased three planes and one flight simulator to use for training.
Her love of flying started when she went to an air show in Frederick, which left Frederick in 2003 and moved to Martinsburg, West Virginia. She was 32 at the time.
The air show had a stand that offered introductory lessons, and she decided to sign up for them. She was hooked. It took a while for her to make the call that this is what she wanted to do, but she finally did it.
Tibbs started working at the Airways Inn, the airport restaurant, in 2009 while she took classes to become an instructor. The job was a means to an end, and it gave her the flexibility to be around the planes as often as possible.
But it was there that she met a group of women who introduced her to the Sugarloaf Ninety-Nines. The Ninety-Nines is an international organization of approximately 5,000 licensed pilots from 35 countries. The Ninety-Nines work to provide women more opportunities in aviation and provide networking and scholarship opportunities.
Tibbs moved to two different flight schools, where she worked as a part-time instructor and eventually a full-time instructor. Before opening her business, she worked for the AOPA as an aviation technical specialist.
Tibbs’ children, Randy and Rihannon, joke that their mom’s real goal is to work in every building at the airport.
“If I become a state trooper I’ll be in good shape,” Tibbs quipped, referring to the Maryland State Police’s rescue helicopter, Trooper 3, based at the Frederick airport.
Steve Richter credits Tibbs’ demeanor for making her such a successful flight instructor.
Richter, who works as a banker and lives in Eldersburg, has been using Tibbs as his instructor since 2012. Tibbs was teaching at a different flight school at the time, but Richter immediately gravitated toward her. He used Tibbs as his private instructor to earn his private pilot certification.
Now, as he strives to earn his commercial pilot’s license, he attends Bravo Flight Training for Tibbs’ instruction.
Tibbs is easygoing, but also demanding of Richter. She demands perfection of her students, and Richter likes that. Richter cast his vote for Tibbs as instructor of the year.
“I know that if I pass by her standards, then I am going to exceed the minimum standards for any test I go to take,” Richter said.
Despite the high standards, Richter still feels like he can joke around with Tibbs. He recalls a time he was preparing to fly and tried to move the plane forward, but the plane wouldn’t move.
Tibbs had her foot on the brake. So, Richter lightheartedly smacked her on the knee.
“Don’t touch my plane,” Richter joked. “I’m in charge now.”
Tibbs has also worked to foster a sense of community among her students. Because flight schools can take from a month for tremendously dedicated students to years for people taking their time, building relationships is an important aspect of being a good instructor.
She offers her students tours of the control towers at the airport. She also brings in pilot examiners to come talk to students to ease the pressure of exams.
She has even organized flights with her students to go to breakfasts and lunches throughout the state.
“Flying is a lot of fun, but it’s even more fun when it’s a community,” Richter said. “You get together with people you share a common interest with, and you have the opportunity to get together and have fun. It also allows me to meet people that can help me with practice and serve as a safety pilot. So it’s incredibly valuable.”
Follow Allen Etzler on Twitter: @AllenWEtzler.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Merry Christmas From The Sugarloaf 99s!

Warm wishes to all -- enjoy all holidays being celebrated, stay warm, and congratulations to our newest instrument rated chapter member Carol G!!! -- maybe she'll help us navigate the new Instrument Landing System (ILS) approach posted at Frederick Airport for Christmas this year -- the Chimney Z -- but heed the caution that its not applicable with naughty children!  Carol -- did the examiner test you on Santa's hometown approach too?

Monday, October 3, 2016

Join Us For a Paint-Along Fundraiser to Benefit The Sugarloaf 99s

Date/Time: Sunday, November 13th, 2016 - 1:30 pm - 4:00 pm  

Location:     Belles' Sports Bar & Grill, 1202 East Patrick Street,           Frederick, MD 21701


Ticket purchase required by Friday, Nov 11.  Please bring your receipt for ease of event entry.  Your receipt is your ticket.

 CLICK HERE to Purchase Your Tickets

Paintings take roughly 2 hours to complete, so please arrive no later than 1:30 pm so you have time to settle in and secure your seats! Painting will begin promptly at 2:00 pm.
Food and beverages can be purchased separately from Belles' Bar & Grille during the event, or if you plan on doing lunch, arrive a little earlier.

Belles' has generously agreed to donate a portion of their sales to the cause. Please be sure to let them know that you are there supporting the event.

$45 fee covers all the painting supplies needed to complete a 16 x 20” canvas panel. The canvas panels will be pre-drawn with the basic plane design. Our professional artist will walk you through the entire process. Beginners are most definitely welcome! Bring a friend (or two) and enjoy an afternoon of creativity and fun!

Due to limited seating and planning for the supplies involved, tickets must be purchased in advance of the event and are non-refundable unless the event needs to be cancelled by Under the Horizon. The last day to purchase tickets will be November 11th at 5:00 pm.

Under the Horizon Pottery and Arts Studio is pleased to present this Paint-Along Fundraiser on behalf of the Sugarloaf Chapter of the Ninety-Nines, Inc. This International Organization of Women Pilots will be hosting the Start of the Air Race Classic, an all-women's transcontinental air race in June 2017 at the Frederick Municipal Airport featuring over 50 race teams from all over the US and Canada. $15 of each ticket purchased will go directly to the Sugarloaf 99s. Funds raised from the event will be used to defray costs associated with this unique sporting event and to fund scholarships which they award each year to women pilots and student pilots. The Sugarloaf 99s is based at Frederick Airport and is a 501c3 organization. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Chapter Activities This Fall

Contact Sugarloaf 99s For Details - More Fly Outs and Activities Will Be Posted as They Develop

September 5  - Susan B. Earned her Commercial Rating!

September 8@ 6:30 PM  - Chapter Meeting - Airways Inn at Frederick Airport

September 10 2pm - 5pm
 – ARC 2017 Fundraiser - Cabi Fashion Party - Private Home

September 15 – Deadline for Fall Fly Now Award applications

September 16 7PM
– Aviation Jeopardy! at the NACC - Frederick Airport

September 17 9AM to 4PM  – Chapter Fly Out  - Essex Skypark Wings and Wheels (W42) 

September 18  – Chapter Field Trip  -  9/11 Memorial at Shanksville, PA

September 24 – Girls in Aviation Day at Frederick Airport hosted by the AOPA Women in Aviation Chapter

October 1 – Deadline for submissions to the 99 News for the November/December issue

October 1 12-5 PM – EAA Chapter 524 Picnic at Frederick Airport - RSVP to EAA 
                                "Beyond The Powder" will be shown!

October 8 (9 Raindate)  - Repaint Compass Rose at Frederick Airport

October 13@ 6:30 PM  - Chapter Meeting - Seth's Hangar - F2 at FDK

October 15 – New York/New Jersey Section Fall Meeting, Binghamton, New York - KGBM Chapter Fly Out

October 21-23 – Mid-Atlantic Section Fall Meeting, Washington DC

November 19@ 12-3 – Paws and Planes at Frederick Airport - AOPA NACC Hangar

December 1 – Deadline for submissions to the 99 News for the January/February issue

June 14-20, 2017 – Air Race Classic Start Activities at Frederick Airport

Future International Conferences

July 12-16, 2017 - San Antonio, Texas
2018 – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
2019 – Dayton, Ohio

Monday, August 1, 2016

What We Did Last Summer

Here's a Quick List of Sugarloaf 99's Activities  during June-July-Aug 2016

June 9@6:30 pm - Chapter Meeting at Airways Inn, Frederick Airport

June 20-24 -  40th Air Race Classic. Cheer Frederick Based Teams 12 and 20 as they race from Prescott, AZ to Daytona Beach, FL

July 14@6:30 pm - Chapter Meeting at Airways Inn, Frederick Airport

July 25-31 - EAA Airventure - Oshkosh, WI. 

August 4@ 7 pm - Lin Caywood is Guest Speaker at EAA Chapter 524 on field at Frederick Airport. Presentation is about The Air Race Classic

August 11@ 6:30 PM  - Chapter Meeting - Airways Inn at Frederick Airport

August 14 - Joy H. Earned her Private Pilot Certificate!

August 15 - Deadline for Student Pilots to Apply for 99s Membership to be eligible for Fly Now Award

August 20@ 10 AM   - Chapter Fly Out - Lancaster, PA

August 28@ 9 AM   - Chapter Fly Out - Hudson River Corridor

August 30@ 10 AM   - Joint Field Trip with AOPA WAI - NTSB Tour

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Sugarloaf's Joy Halcott Wins East Coast Private Pilots Scholarship!

Congratulations to Joy  - she now has additional funds to help her complete her flight training!
Joy is just a few cross country flights and a couple of night hours away from earning her wings.  From the ECPP Facebook Post:

"Our EAST COAST PRIVATE PILOTS FB group has raised money for student pilot awards ($500). Another $500 award will be at the end of the year and will be awarded to the winner of another student pilot.
Here is the winning essay for June 1, 2016:
The first time I climbed into a cockpit I felt something click inside me. That's not to say it's easy. Learning to fly is one of the hardest things I have ever tried to do. Nevertheless, with every lesson, I feel like an addict as my capacity to learn gets pushed to its limits, and every time I land I'm hungry to know more, and go further. I have mainly financed my training and education personally thus far. I have completed several classroom courses with the CCBC Aviation Certificate Program. I have received a 4.0 GPA (including Ground School, Aviation History, and Flight Training), and received the highest grade in those classes. I passed my FAA Knowledge test on the first try. I am now more than $17,000, 1 year, 100 hours, 5 CFIs (due to airline advancement and health,) 3 planes (due to school's loss,) and multiple solos later. Cancellations due to weather, plane and CFI unavailability, and maintenance/loss of planes have prolonged my training, even with utilizing vacation time to schedule extra lessons. I am so close to finishing, and the biggest roadblock I face is finances. I am committed to continuing my training as long as I can, but I admit that I did not anticipate so many setbacks, or for my training to take so long to complete. I have gone over the amount I had saved in advance for my training. If I receive this scholarship, I know I can finish.
I have been involved in charity work my entire life, and proudly co-founded a women-led 501c3 organization that still exists today. More recently, I have become involved in my local Civil Air Patrol, WAI, and joined the Essex Skypark Association. I also joined the Ninety-Nines, and designed a Facebook page for the local Maryland chapter prior to joining. If I receive this scholarship, I will finish my training. I will then continue to use my skills as a pilot through the Ninety-Nines and Civil Air Patrol to teach about aviation, encourage others to become pilots, and fly rescue missions. I also hope to one day become a CFI, and mentor other Ninety-Nines. Today I look back and realize if certain events had not taken place - if I had not faced down being broken, I never would have had the courage to be where I am today. The obstacles are great, as I have no idea how I will continue to afford flying, but somehow I will find a way. I will continue to learn, because I know who I am now. There is no going back, only forward. I am a Pilot.
Joy Halcott"

Friday, March 4, 2016

Frederick News Post Reports on Film Screening

Film about women in aviation shown to inspire Visitation Academy students

Kindergartener Sophia Altamirano looked over her father’s shoulder while playing with Styrofoam airplanes on Sunday at a showing of “Beyond the Powder.”
“I wanted her to be exposed to it,” said her father, Pedro Altamirano, who lives in Frederick. “[Women] have lower access to technology. ... I think it’s something women in general need to reach.”
Visitation Academy hosted the Sugarloaf Ninety-Nines Inc. to screen the film about women in aviation, specifically the Powder Puff Derby and the Air Race Classic. Ninety-Nines Inc. is an international organization of women pilots.
Producer Kara Martinelli and director Adam White, of Ohio, attended the event, which was meant to inspire an interest in aviation in young women.
“Our mission is to empower these girls to learn more about aviation,” Visitation Academy Principal Cindy Cantrel said. “The mission has always been to empower women and advance education.”
The showing was part of a continuing relationship between the Ninety-Nines Inc. and Visitation Academy, she said. In September, students participated in a day when they had the opportunity to take flights and learn more about aviation.
Cantrel said because the school is all girls, the students are very serious and focused on their studies. She said it’s important that the girls are exposed to STEM areas so that they can consider pursuing a career in a field in which they might not otherwise realize they have opportunities.
The best time to grab their attention is in the first, second and third grades, she said.
Martinelli said she was inspired by many aviators’ stories but noticed that there were some that weren’t being told.
“We needed to do one about women,” she said. “There’s a whole other contingent. ... It’s just such a shame that these girls are discouraged from science, not intentionally.”
Lin Caywood, membership director at Ninety-Nines Inc., was featured in the film as she participated in the 2014 Air Race Classic race. Caywood, a Frederick resident, said she began learning how to fly in her 30s and participated in the race in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2014.
“It was kind of something I had always wanted to do,” she said.
It wasn’t until she was at a certain point in her life that she was able to pursue flight, she said. After completing a marathon in Alaska, she had been in a plane that landed on water, and after that she stopped running marathons and started learning how to fly, she said.
About 6 percent of all certified pilots are women, Caywood said.
Altamirano said Sophia had paid attention to the first half of the film before playing with her planes. At home, she pretends her hand is a plane, he said, so he thinks her interest in aviation could grow in the future.
The film will be broadcast on PBS in June during the air race.
Follow Brandi Bottalico on Twitter: @brandibot.

Monday, February 15, 2016

FREE Movie Screening at Visitation Academy

Mid-Atlantic Section Meeting to be Held April 1-3, 2016 in Fredericksburg, Virginia


The Mid-Atlantic Section meeting will be held April 1-3, 2016, in Fredericksburg, VA.  Both the site and the time have been chosen to provide a significant experience for Mid-Atlantic Section members.  Fredericksburg is a very significant Civil War site, as well as being the nearby location of George Washington’s birthplace.  Sites in the Historic District include Revolution, Civil War, and Victorian styles.

Additionally, the weekend chosen for our meeting is a “First Friday,” a date each month on which gallery openings, public entertainment and other activities are provided in the historic area from 6:00 to 9:30 PM.  Details will be available in your welcoming package.  Our Friday Night BBQ at the Shannon Airport is timed early so that members can participate in the “First Friday” activities.

Detailed information on lodging, activities, schedule and registration form can be found at the following websites:

Early registration is encouraged.  The Trolley Tour requires advanced booking (minimum of one month suggested) to assure availability.

Early registration ends March 1.  Late registration after March 1.  Registration deadline March 15, 2016.
Meeting hotel block being held until 3/1/2016.  Alternate hotel block (5 miles from meeting hotel with your own transportation) being held until 3/17/2016.

Questions:  Contact Barbara Wilper  703-765-4262 or  

Monday, January 25, 2016

Sugarloaf Members Featured in Baltimore Style Magazine!!!

Wow - what a great article!!! 
And CAP Member / Budding Pilot Jordan, who took her first GA flight in ARC Race Teams Plane "Freakin Awesome" is the Cover Girl!
Congrats to all of ladies for representing us!
Check out the Magazine at