Lake Placid HS & EAA Chapter 1240 Sebring, FL

Update 18April2011 :: The materials for recovering our Tri-Champ have arrived and I’ll be bringing them to the hanger Tuesday before the meeting. We will need to determine what we will be able to do at the Saturday Young Eagles event/pancake breakfast on May 14th. I would like to start some preparing / recovering of some of the parts we have stripped so the kids can see where we are headed and they can see something moving forward.

John Rousch’s introduction

Our project is coming along slowly but for sure.

When we got the plane back from Iowa, after our A&Ps inspected it, we determined it have to be recovered. We have decided to use the Stewart Systems water based fabric covering process to eliminate the toxic nature of the Poly-fiber process.

There are many challenges in keeping teens interested and engaged in an aviation project. Working around distractions such as jobs, girl and boy friends, and cars are common. This time of year is especially difficult since there is testing, end of year event such as “grad bash”, prom, and of course the last day of school. Students are tired of school and want summer to be here.

We have utilized the donated aircraft as the keystone for our community partnership to promote youth aviation education. Our current partners include EAA Chapter 1240, the School Board of Highlands County, Sebring Regional Airport, USA Light Sport Expo, and the Heartland Workforce Board. We are working on bringing in other partners such as the US Air Force at the Avon Park Bombing Range and the Civil Air patrol.

All the participants in this community effort may or may not have the the same agenda, but they all have a commitment to helping youth get involved in aerospace and aviation. We try and find a way for each to bring forward what resources/talent they have to meet the common goal.

Our local EAA Chapter 1240 is the lead partner since we have the Young eagles program and the related program insurance coverage. Our chapter has a strong commitment to youth aviation education. we have developed a youth membership option after youth have participated as a Young Eagle.

I’m willing to help in any way I can and won’t be shy to ask if there is something Build-a-Plane can do for us. If you are available, we have a fly-in pancake breakfast on May 14th at Sebring Regional Airport. Our kids will be working on the aircraft and we will be also hosting a Young Eagles event.

I teach the Florida Dept. of Education Aerospace curriculum at Lake Placid High School in addition to shop and drafting classes.


  1. Its great to see the begin of the project and everyone is excited to move forward. I will be posting photos on the EAA 1240 web page of the progress. There are some photos already on the website showing the beginning of the project. If any one wants to drop me line I can be reached at the following email addresses

  2. Wow – someone found this and so quickly!

    Thanks for commenting – it is really nice to know that you are out there. We check the view stats but that’s not the same as an actual comment. Appreciate it!

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