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The Canadian Harvard Aircraft Association (CHAA) at Tillsonburg Airport is offering $195 flights this coming weekend in its fleet of North American Harvard aircraft. The price includes membership to the CHAA. These Second World War-era aircraft are two-seat tandem advance trainers with a full set of controls in the rear passenger seat. Powered by a 600-horsepower Pratt & Whitney R-1340 Wasp radial engine, a Harvard flight is not soon forgotten.
The Harvards, restored to original condition, have metal bucket seats, so passengers will be given a cushion or don a parachute which acts as a seat cushion, as well as a head-set for communication, just like the aviators from the 1940s. After a safety brief, passengers will receive a cockpit familiarization followed by a flight where they can choose to leave the canopy open and feel the rush of the wind at 2,000 feet.
The CHAA, created in 1985, has a fleet of eight Harvards with four currently flying and two more under active restoration. CHAA’s mission is to acquire, restore, maintain and display aircraft associated with the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan and the Royal Canadian Air Force. 2020 has been a tough year for the association which generates most of its operating revenue through paid appearances, fundraisers, and the ride program. Only recently was it able to adapt a COVID-19 plan to operate the ride program again to help generate funds. Strict COVID-19 protocols have been implemented to ensure the maximum amount of safety for association staff and customers. CHAA’s stores tent will also be open, selling t-shirts and collectibles with all proceeds going directly to keeping these aircraft flying.
To insure proper COVID-19 restrictions are followed, these flights need to be booked in advance by emailing Stacey at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on CHAA, the flights, and COVID-19 protocols, go here. Association members will be cleaning cockpit controls, headsets and canopies between each flight.