2013 Hall of Honor Inductees – George & Tyke Klitch

In our 2013 Convention Wrap-up post, we had a short mention that George & Tyke Klitch were induced into our SWPC Hall of Honor. Here is a full article about the 2013 Hall of Honor inductees. This article, Two long-serving members selected for SWPC Honor Roll, was published in the September-October 2013 issue of the Short Wing Piper News and appears on pages 17-19.

For a full listing of Hall of Honor recipients, please visit our Honor Roll page.

Two long-serving members selected for SWPC Honor Roll

The club awarded a framed certificate to George and Florence (better known as Tyke) Klitch, Valrico, Fla., in honor of their inclusion in the SWPC Hall of Honor. President Peter Lubig presented the certificate to George and Tyke at the banquet Thursday evening.

Those who fly in and camp at Sun ‘n Fun probably meet George – or at least one of his crew –  since he is in charge of the aircraft camping area. And for many of our members, Tyke – or one of her crew – is their introduction to the Short Wing Piper Club, since she faithfully mans the club’s booth in the type club tent, handing out Short Wing Piper News magazines and brochures, answering questions about the club, and sometimes signing up new members or taking renewals.

In addition, George has been the long-time president of the Florida Chapter.

President Peter Lubig presents SWPC Honor Roll plague to George & Tyke Klitsch, 2013 recipients of the award.
President Peter Lubig presents SWPC Honor Roll plague to George & Tyke Klitsch, 2013 recipients of the award.

The nomination for the honor came from a current Honor Roll member and another long-serving member of the Florida Chapter and the Sun ‘n Fun crew, Iris Morris. Her nomination reads:
I would like to nominate George and Florence (Tyke) Klitsch to the Honor Roll.

In the early ‘80’s, George got his license and their first plane, a Colt, which George out-fitted for IFR flight. It was one of the first small IFR planes in the area. They flew it between New Jersey and the Florida Keys. The next was a Triple-tail Bellanca that he rebuilt from a basket case; next was a Bellanca Viking, which Tyke dearly loved, and then a Mooney and finally back to the “real” planes. a 1959 Tri-Pacer, which they still have.

About this time, they became involved with Sun ‘n Fun and joined the SWPC. Billy and Adair Henderson and Iris Morris, all Tri-Pacer owners and SWPC members, asked George to volunteer in Aircraft Camping, where Adair was chairman and Iris co-chair- man. By this time, there were several SWPC members volunteering with them.

The following year, George was asked to take over the duties of Chairman, which he has done ever since and has just ‘signed on’ for another year.

With most of our volunteers being Club members, when A/C Camping got a mobile home converted to a working building, Sun ‘n Fun named it “The Short Wing Piper Building.”

Back in the “Early Days,” Sun ‘n Fun had a small tent for Type Clubs, and the Florida Chapter asked to set up a booth. This is when Florence (Tyke) found “Her Place.” She sets it up, finds and schedules volunteers and has made it a place for members and others to meet, get information, pay their dues, post buy and sell items, etc. National members come here to meet up with friends, pay their dues, or sit and rest their tired feet.

Not long after George started as Chairman at S’nF, he was elected President of the Florida Chapter and has been re-elected over and over. He has helped to give this Chapter the honor of being the first Chapter to receive the “Outstanding Chapter of the Year” award in 2010 at the Middletown, Ohio, Convention.

We feel that George and Florence deserve to be honored with this award.

Iris Morris
SWPC #64
News Editor/Treasurer Florida Chapter

The board members agreed and asked that a certificate be printed to be presented at the convention. The certificate reads:

In recognition of their outstanding contribution to the Short Wing Piper Club and its goal to maintain and preserve the Piper Vagabonds, Clippers, Pacers, Colts and Tri-Pacers, George and Tyke have been selected to have their names included on the Short Wing Piper Club Honor Roll!

They are recognized for their service to their Florida Chapter and to the Short Wing Piper Club and aviation in general for their work each year at Sun ‘n Fun. In addition to leading the Florida Chapter George has led the aircraft camping group for many years and Tyke has manned the SWPC booth in the Type Club Tent for just as many years. Their service to their chapter and their club and its members has been invaluable and they are to be commended for their work for aviation in general.

They join the Honor Roll alongside previously recognized members Robert A. Fuller, Stephen W. Marsh, Edwin F. Wach, Kurt Schneider, Larry D. Smith, Lonnie McLaughlin, George Fruehauf, Iris Morris, Frank Rush, Charles H. “Chuck” Lewis, Bob and Eleanor Mills, Clyde Grant, Kent O’Kelly, John Wood, Ralph Gutowski, Tom Anderson, Cliff Van Vleet, John Beck, Doug Stewart, Art Weisberger, and Garry Butler.

Awarded at the 2013 SWPC
Convention, Sarasota Springs, N.Y.

George and Tyke’s names will be added to the SWPC Honor Roll plaque on display in the club’s area at the Piper Museum in Lock Haven. George said he knows just where to hang their certificate in the Short Wing Piper Building at Sun ‘n Fun.

More Pictures from Short Wings Over Saratoga

Short Wings Over Saratoga – 2013 SWPC Convention

Short Wings Over Saratoga Convention Chair, Andy Seligson, sent in a whole bunch of pictures from our recent 2013 SWPC Convention showing members of our Short Wing Family taking part in the convention actives. You’ll see people enjoying the 4th of July Parade, the Lake George Dinner Cruise, the Banquet as well as just hanging out enjoying each other’s company.

Ralph Gutowski also shared a gallery of pictures from the Lake George Dinner Cruise that you can view if you click on this link: http://swpc2013lakegeorgedinnercruise.shutterfly.com/ Thanks, Ralph, for sharing your pictures!

The pictures shown below are thumbnail images so are somewhat cropped. To view full size, please click on any picture. Clicking on a picture also allows you to view the gallery as a slideshow.

2013 Convention Wrap Up

Short Wings Over Saratoga – 2013 SWPC Convention

It’s late and we need to get on the road early – so here’s a short recap of today’s events.
I will get pictures to post in the days to come and will get them up on the site asap.
~Myrna

Today was another good weather day – ideal for our free day to spend in and around Saratoga Springs!

At 5:30 this evening we started our Convention Banquet. President Peter Lubig opened the banquet and announced that George & Tyke Klitsch are the 2013 inductees into the SWPC Hall of Honor.

Before we started our meals, Ralph Gutowski offered a prayer.

Dinner was a wonderful buffet of salad, vegetables, roast fingerling potatoes, haddock, veal and beef rounded out with a variety of cakes to choose from for dessert. The food was great!

Recording Secretary, Art Weisberger, announced the results of the elections and by-law vote.

  • The by-law amendment was not accepted
  • Art Weisberger will serve as Recording Secretary for another term
  • Connie Stevens is our new President

Our guest speaker, Troy Harmon, gave a talk and slideshow about his adventures flying to and around Alaska. A good description of what he talked about  can be found at:  Author of book about flight to Alaska to be banquet speaker (click on title to view story). After the banquet, he signed copies of his book, 14 Days to Alaska.

After Troy’s talk, Convention Chair took the podium to thank the Convention team, hand out raffle prizes and give announce awards.

Poker Run – Kevin Weidner (I’m assuming his son Zac flew with him as well) won the poker run with a hand of three sevens. Kevin, his wife, Michele, and sons Zac and Jacob arrived at the convention in a Twin Comanche – and yes, they flew the poker run in the Twin!

Drawings for raffle prizes happened next. There were a variety of nice prizes including many cash prizes. A good number of those winning cash prizes donated the cash to the Education Foundation. The amount isn’t firm but Andy quickly calculated that somewhere between $1,300 and $1,500 of raffle sales were donated to the Education Foundation during the convention.

Aircraft Awards – we had all Short Wing aircraft types represented at this convention except for a Vagabond. Because of the small number of planes, all planes that managed to fly in to the convention were judged.

Here are the winners:

  • Best Clipper – Barbara & Gilbert Pierce’s Red Lady, N5834H
  • Best Pacer – Paul & Heather Gagnon’s CF-GAG
  • Best PA22/2o Pacer – Jack & Sandy Madden’s N8879C
  • Best TriPacer – Sid & Sue Brain’s N8457D
  • Best Colt – Tom & Amber McKernan’s N5883Z
  • Best Non-SWPC – Steve McKeon’s original design “Minion”, NX49SM
  • Bev Jewett Grand Champion Memorial Award – Dale Berger’s PA220-150, N87NM

Following Aircraft Awards, Connie Stevens was congratulated on her new role as SWPC President for the next term.

Outgoing President, Peter Lubig, made some closing remarks.

Board Member, Mark Ohlau, read a statement on behalf of Vice President, Kurt Selbert, and Board Member, John Kobbeman, announcing their resignations from the board. Mark also announced his resignation

Ralph Gutowski, in the tradition started by late member, Steve Marsh, officially announced the convention is suspended until 2014.

After saying good-byes, many SWPC members went outside our hotel and enjoyed a brilliant display of fireworks at Congress Park.