Flying in for breakfast at the Lacombe Regional Airport

Damien Heintz, 4, is buckled in with help of Lacombe Flying Club volunteers and Fly-in Breakfast attendees to go up in a Bell 47 helicopter piloted by Glenn Chong on Sunday, June 2, 2019 at the Lacombe Regional Airport. Ashli Barrett / Lacombe Globe

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Hundreds of Lacombe residents and visitors flocked to the newly christened Lacombe Regional Airport for the Fly-in, Drive-in Pancake Breakfast on Sunday.

The 54th annual event, put on by the Lacombe Flying Club, saw about 29 aircraft come in to the airport between 7:45 a.m. and noon, with 691 breakfasts served over the same time span.

While there were a few less aircraft this year, due to fly-in breakfasts happening in other communities, including Barrhead, flying club President Jon Fromm said the local community’s turnout was just as good.

Attendees of the Fly-in Breakfast browse a number of helicopters that came in for the breakfast. Ashli Barrett / Lacombe Globe

“We get really good community support every year and this year is no exception,” he said.

“It’s a good chance for the community to come out to the airport, get involved, take a look around and maybe go for a ride.”

Those in attendance had opportunity to grab a breakfast for a nominal fee – more to cover costs than fundraise for the club – as well as get up close with some of the various aircraft.

Damien Heintz, 4, had a serious expression on his face, but was excited all the same to be on the Bell 47 helicopter flight, sitting next to pilot Glenn Chong. Ashli Barrett / Lacombe Globe

Those who had the opportunity to take a Bell 47 helicopter flight in support of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Lacombe and District saw this view of the City of Lacombe, including Hwy 2A, the lagoons, the Len Thompson Fish Pond and much of the city’s residential areas. Ashli Barrett / Lacombe Globe

Among the more popular aircraft was a Bell 47 – a civilian version of the helicopter flown on M*A*S*H*, owned by Glenn Chong. Chong took a lucky few people up for a quick two-three minute flight, on the condition they make a donation to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Lacombe and District. No specific number raised was known at the time of press, but several hundred dollars were raised.

It’s just one of many fundraisers the flying club is involved in, including the Twinkle Tours at Christmas.

“The community has been really good to this club, and it’s nice to give something back.”

Jim Moore, left, was tasked with cooking pancakes alongside Andrew Cable, right, during the Lacombe Flying Clubs annual Fly-in Breakfast Sunday, June 2, 2019 at the Lacombe Regional Airport. Ashli Barrett / Lacombe Globe

Lacombe Flying Club volunteers guide airplanes onto the taxiway during the Lacombe Flying Club’s annual Fly-in Breakfast at the Lacombe Regional Airport on Sunday, June 2, 2019. Ashli Barrett / Lacombe Globe