It’s been a week, but the buzz is still in the air! The Thunder In The Peace Air Show tore through Peace River July 31st, and what a show it put on!
There were planes from all over the world in attendance. From the locally restored Canso, to the vintage planes from the World War II era. From newer stunt planes, to Canada’s very own Snowbirds. The Thunder In The Peace Air Show had it all!
To this day, local photographers are still uploading the hundreds of photos they took at the event!
While which part of the air show was the coolest is a debate that will continue well after anyone finally figures out what came first, the chicken or the egg, I can definitely tell you my absolute favourite part.
My favourite part was hanging with these cool cats, the SkyHawks!
Not only did I get the opportunity to have a quick chat with some of the SkyHawks, but… they might have taken me up in their nifty little airplane… and threw me out of it!
Oh yeah! That’s me jumping out of the SkyHawks aircraft with none other than Sgt. Joey Miller strapped to my back and MCpl. Antoine Collette behind the camera!
I cannot begin to tell you how unreal skydiving felt. The whole experience felt like it wasn’t really happening at first, but that all changed once the gear came on. I’ll admit! I was so nervous and scared beyond words. I kept laughing at the whole ordeal simply because I couldn’t believe I was actually about to jump out of a plane!
When we got up in the air, the morale of the entire crew kept me afloat. These guys and girls were chatting it up, talking about what they’re going to do after being done with practice for the day… it all seemed so normal! Like, was I the only one who realized that, oh I don’t know, we were soaring up into the clouds and then jumping out of a moving airplane at 12,000 feet?! Seemed like it!
I started chatting with the crew. That’s what helped me out the most. Just the four closest people to me alone had around 1,000 parachute jumps under their belt. That’s not even including the rest of the team! It was really funny when they asked me to stick out my hands at one point to see if they were shaking uncontrollably… remarkably, they weren’t! …then again, nobody bothered looking at my left foot, which was bouncing up and down with about as much control as a washing machine tumbling down the side of a cliff.
When it was our turn to jump, I made a bit of a mistake. I sort of looked down at all the people slowly flying out of the aircraft and plummeting their way down to earth… try standing after that! Thankfully, I pulled it together. I was given the taps on the right leg, and before you know it… bye-bye, airplane! We are falling from the sky!
NOW the adrenaline kicks in! The excited yells and roars, “I’m actually doing it!!! I just jumped out of a (very colourful word)-ing airplane!!! Holy (lots more colourful language)!!!”
We soared through the air! I could see everything! The town of Peace River, the farmer’s fields, the patches of missing canola in the farmer’s fields, my house, my neighbour’s house… the list goes on! Even 12 Foot Davis looked like an ant!
When Sgt. Miller deployed the parachute, the fun didn’t stop there. You remember these spinny maneuvers the SkyHawks performed during the air show?
Yeah, guess who he practiced with! Oh yeah, none other than yours truly.
You’re probably wondering, “what’s all this got to do with the price of tea in China?”
Well, I wouldn’t have gotten such an opportunity if it wasn’t for two things. One, obviously, working in the media (working for the radio station). Two, VOLUNTEERING. Yes! I volunteered a lot of my time for the air show. I helped out whenever I could, with whatever I could. I went there. I got my hands dirty. I spent days there and evenings, too! I looked for things to do and made sure the people in charge of the show knew my interests and knew my dedication to helping out.
So the next time you may think volunteering is this boring thing that people only do in high school because it’s mandatory, or that volunteering is just not cool, think again! I’m just a measly, little radio host, and VOLUNTEERING took me skydiving.