2012 March Newsletter
The Touring Motor Glider Association was formed to exchange technical information, coordinate activities, and share experiences. Our goal is to be the (world-wide) Go-To source for all information about touring motor gliders.
Introduction – In the planning stages for the last two years, the Touring Motor Gliders Association (TMGA) was finally launched January 1, 2012. The Association is a direct result of discussions held during the 2010 and 2011 TMG fly-in's where we longed for a common portal to make it easier to coordinate activities and to share experiences. Central to the effort has been building world-class website to serve as an online community (Forums, Gallery, Classified Ads) as well as repository of knowledge (Knowledgebase) related to TMGs. We received feedback from around the world that such an endeavor was needed and are gratified that the start- up has generated quite a bit of interest.
Website Updates – Our lead webmaster, Steve Sliwa, launched our website as a 'beta site' in December 2011. He tells us that it is now at 1.0 status, meaning that we believe to be in a stable configuration. If you detect any problems or issues please use the contact forms on the web to share your observations. Numerous new features have been added in the past several weeks including a New User Checklist and a growing collection Video Tutorials on how to use the website. Many people signed up without filling in their profiles or 'opting in' to the various community activities. Please come to the website, update your profile, subscribe to the forums and/or connect with the RSS feeds, and join us in our online community. Together we want to build an unparalleled knowledgebase to support each other and promote the sport.
2012 (4th Annual) West Coast Touring Motor Glider Fly-In – July 12-15, Minden, NV -- The 2011 TMG Fly-In was a roaring success. Twenty-four (24) ships graced the flight line, including: Grob, Taifun, Ximango, Stemme, Lambada, Samba, Phoenix, Diamond, Pipistral, and Fournier. Aircraft came from California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Florida. Between pilots, friends, and prospective buyers, 40 people participated in the flying, presentations, and meals. We believe it is the largest gathering of TMG's in the country, and most likely the world. Five ships went on to Parowan, Utah to link up with the Auxiliary-powered Sailplane Association's annual soaring event.
Responding to suggestions, we are adding a day to the event this year, starting on Thursday July 12th and concluding on Sunday July 15th. Perfect weather is guaranteed! With an extra day we can organize a fly-out to an area airport for lunch. Besides, it is Minden, Nevada, with some of the best soaring conditions in the country, so let's take advantage of it.
Updates will be posted on the website in the appropriate Forum and under the Events tab of the website. We have several people signing-up from the East and southeast coasts planning to attend. Check-out the sign-up sheet. You might want to form a cross-country gaggle or caravan of touring motor gliders to trek across together. Whether you fully intend to come to the meet (either as a TMG pilot or TMG-interested spectator), or are just considering coming, please enter 'sign-up' information in the Events tab / sign up section data field. The Fly-In is now only four months away and it's important that we begin to get a sense of the potential numbers for planning purposes.
Volunteers Needed – The TMGA is a volunteer led activity and as in all such activities we need to share the burden. There are several ways you can help:
- Section Leaders -- We need section leaders for each type of Touring Motor Glider and for each Global Region. Steve assures us that programming skills aren't needed. But like with any communities leaders need to emerge to help keep things organized and to help point people's passions.
- Knowledgebase – If you have interesting data or information that would be of use to your fellow TMGA members please navigate to 'Add Knowledge' in the Knowledgebase and upload the data/information/content. We also need volunteer editors who are willing to help us organize the information. Word Processing level skills are all that are needed.
- Photo Gallery – Photos are needed. Please collect them up and upload in the photo gallery. We just started but we already have over 300 photos and more are added each week. See video tutorial if needed.
- Instructors, Vendors, Suppliers, Service Providers – If you are a vendor and offer services or products to our community, please consider placing an advertisement in our classifieds section, which is free. We are committed to your prosperity as that enables you to support our community. Those with the means and are interested in more visibility we do have a couple of sponsorship slots reserved.
Fly-In: Ron Snedecor and Richard Pearl have been pulling this together and with an event of this scale help is always needed. o Pre-Contest Logistics – Any members in the vicinity who can help us coordinate the myriad of details please contact us as soon as possible.
- On-Site Logistics – Those who will have local vehicles for helping to transport the various guests please let us know via the sign-up sheet. Also those who will be available to help marshal aircraft or help with registration
- Flight Leaders – Those who have familiarity with the vicinity and would like to serve as flight leaders, please let us know. We will have several newbies and we believe that pilot safety and enjoyment are best served by team flying.
- Membership/Contributions/Donations: All not-for-profits invest some energy to line up the resources to serve its membership and we are no different. So far the organizers have carried the burden (creatively and monetarily) but hopefully that could be spread over a larger base as time evolves. So if you aren't able to volunteer time perhaps you would be willing to officially join for as little as $15/yr (via paypal). Anyone with interest can register to be a user of the TMGA website and automatically qualifies as an associate member of the association. Those that are able and willing to join (pay dues or contribute) as described in the website will, over time, gain access to more features. For example: o We expect to publish a pdf document with is an indexed, well-organized version of the knowledgebase on a regular basis.
- We plan to develop an online tool for logging 'airport caching', treks, and soaring accomplishments accessible. o We are installing the new logos into a members section (see below).
Logo Selected – Toni Hausler heeded our call on the forum and contributed some ideas for the logo. Everyone agreed that what she came up with was the best yet so we homed in on it. As you can see above, it captures our critical themes: a blend of both classic and modern TMGs, and the world-wide nature of the Association.
Other Notable Items:
- As of March 13th we have 168 members world-wide. Of this group 23 members are from: Argentina, Australia, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Italy, Scotland, South Africa, and Sweden. We ask this group to reach out to their fellow TMG'ers and organizations and encourage others to join up.
- There is interest forming for a (U.S.) East coast fly-in this year, and definite interest in a California mid-state fly-in in May. Check out the details in the Events section of the Forums. o We hope the non-US TMG groups will use this website for any fly-in coordination, as well as their traditional websites.
- We are now mapping all our members world-wide (see Members > Rosters > RosterMap). Please use the forms to send us your Lat/Long information of your home airport. (Only registered users can see the data)
Respectfully, Richard Pearl Organizing Chair, TMGA
TMGA Directors: Ray Buhr, Steve Sliwa, Ron Snedcor, Stu Ostrander