thanks to our advertisers!




Event Organizers HQ

Just need to put out an ecom or contact the RPA Admin? Click here.

 

Ok, you are planning to host a Fly-In and/or training clinicin your region right?- You've come to the right place. Here we have tried to give you all the lessons learned from all the clinics and fly-ins that came before to save you time and work. Also, the registration, invoice, and other downloadable forms are here as well in ONE click - The new RPA CLINIC FORM PACK

As you read through this, please remember that it's a great idea to email and or call your REGIONAL DIRECTOR and notify him you are going to host a training event in the area, he can and should help you with staffing and other needs. Most regional directors are also active fly-in organizers. If you do NOT know your regional director, email the RPA here and ask for his/her contact info.

STEP ONE: STAFFING

With a standard formation training event (10-20 aircraft), the minimum number of dedicated volunteers is five (5); the Event Host and lead planner (that's probably you!), the Air Boss, Ground Boss and designated Clinic IP and/or CP. You can combine a few of these roles, but over tasking always impacts how smooth - and thus fun - fly-ins are. 

  • EVENT DIRECTOR
    Performs all macro pre-planning, conducts site surveys, sets up airspace, establishes airfield relations, collects and orders RPA supplies or financial support and sets up the itinerary. Final pointy-head on all pre-event decisions. During the event the ED puts out fires, enforces safety and local area flight procedures and rides herd on the cows to meet the itinerary. For formation clinics, the ED must "designate" at least one formation clinic IP from those that have registered to help manage the delivery of ground school presentations, training/safety briefs and student scheduling; this program will help lower the stress of running a training clinic!
  • AIR BOSS
    He/she assigns briefing rooms, airspace operating areas and time slots to aircrews; they are your master flight schedulers. They in turn should work with the designated clinic IP or CP to schedule effective training missions. At smaller clinics, the designated CP/IP can also handle the flight schedule.
  • GROUND BOSS
    The administrative chief - sets up registration and welcome packets, collects completed forms & event fees, manages merchandise sales, interfaces with the media or government reps on behalf of the ED, and insures catering or restaurant reservations are ready for the cattle charge. The Ground Boss is an excellent position for our spouses that enjoy the party.
  • DESIGNATED CLINIC IP
    The organizer of a formation training clinic will need several back seat instructors (Clinic IPs) to meet pre-solo training. The organizer should review their attendance lists (downloaded from the event page) and select one IP as their "designated" to manage/conduct required presentations and assist in student flight scheduling. If the IP accepts this role, the RPA will pay for his/her hotel and in-clinic transportation.
  • DESIGNATED CLINIC CP
    It's the goal of the RPA to have a regional CP on hand at all training clinics in formation, mass formation and tactical, regardless of planned evaluations. Although considered IPs, the check pilot should not be relied upon to carry the main weight of backseat instructional or other IP duties. They are there to observe, provide evaluations and recommendations, and/or assist where able. The RPA will cover the cost (hotel and in-clinic transportation) of one CP at each posted training clinic.

STEP TWO: SET UP YOUR ONLINE EVENT TO ALLOW OPEN REGISTRATION

  • GO TO MEETING MANAGER THROUGH THE ADMIN SITE
  • AT THE TOP OF THE PAGE "ADD MEETING"
  • FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS TO LIST DATES, LOCATION, ADD PICS, SEND AN EMAIL BLAST, ETC.
  • TO SEE WHO REGISTERED, GO INTO MEETING MANAGER, FIND YOUR EVENT IN THE LIST, CLICK ON "REGISTRATION" TO SEE YOUR ATTENDEES, PAYMENTS, ETC.

STEP THREE: EVENT ADVERTISING AND HOW TO GET OUT AN ECOM OR IN TO THE MAGAZINE:

You need to get the word out about your event to generate the "buzz" that results in a good showing. We have a special electronic communication product called an RPA ECOM - "EVENT BULLETIN" that can easily be published and sent to the entire RPA membership in seconds, or we can send it only to a regional membership. If you've planned head of time, you can make it in to the MAGAZINE, RedAlert. We can send out an update to the event bulletin news after it is sent out if needed.

Send your RPA ECOM content to Admin

You should also publish this information to the YAK LIST. Make sure you tell them to register online at www.flyredstar.org, otherwise your attendee master list will be incomplete, or require you to do the manual add.

Advertising is an important part of the process. Those who have given it some attention have found their events quickly grow in to annual operations to be expected each year by the local, regional and national membership.

Do NOT just advertise your fly-in via local private email groups (like google groups) and call it an "RPA" fly-in or clinic, this would be a "closed" or private affair and that's not the mission or culture of the RPA.


STEP FOUR: SETTING UP ARRIVAL REGISTRATION and the PROP TAG FUELING SYSTEM

The next phase of registration is the day-of the event in-processing when the aircraft roll in. This is important, it sets the whole tone for the fly-in.Your goal is to have all attendees land and quickly:

1. Hotel keys assigned ( if you pre-blocked at a hotel, otherwise they are on their own at check in)

2. Have their Fuel credit card registered with FBO (prevents them from accidentally leaving without paying)

3. Sign your combined hold harmless, PIC and Pilot Information form - its in the RPA FORM PACK

4. Give them enough information so they dont get lost, show up on time and don't piss off the airport authority
Things like a street map, event itinerary, list of bars and restraunts, and local airfield rules and operating policys. Dude, if you do nothing else, do this step!!

5. Payment of your event fee to cover costs.
I never know why guys wait to ask for checks when folks are leaving; peoples minds are on scooting out. We recommend this function always be tied to arrival (see suggestion next)

6. Transportation available to the hotels

PUT ALL FORMS IN ONE VANILLA FOLDER - THE MEMBERS "WELCOME PACKET"

If arrival is well run, you've just collected the event fees so your bottom line is covered and the rest of the event will go like clock work. One combined welcome and registration packet works best we've found. The following trick is a great idea to minimize your work and cover the critical details of arrival:


THE CRITICAL TRICK TO COVERING YOUR A___ AS THE EVENT DIRECTOR:

Give the welcome packets to the FBO attendee who is almost always there; tell pilots that on arrival they should grab an arrival packet from FBO attendee to fill out the arrival registration form and then must put in the event fee check, and return the packet, less street maps and other useful stuff, to FBO attendee. The attendee will probably register their fuel credit card at that time, and...

...the pilot will be given a Fuel Prop Tag by the FBO attendee to use in signaling their aircraft is in need of refueling - registration complete; the FBO is covered and your covered!

The fuel prop tags are a common system used at RPA events, the system works by the pilot being issued a prop tag with his N number and name on it, attached is a rubber band, when he lands, he places the prop tag on the prop, when the refueler has filled up the warbird, he places the prop tag on the pitot tube to signal a full aircraft. Prop tags and rubber bands can be purchased at any office depot or other stationary store


NOTE: DOWNLOAD AND HAVE NEW MEMBERS APPLICATIONS ON HAND; EVENTS WILL GET NON MEMBERS ATTENDING, NO REASON NOT TO JOIN THEM UP. WORKS EVEN BETTER IF YOU HAVE AN INTERNET CONNECTION AT THE FBO; HAVE THEM JOIN ONLINE RIGHT FROM EVENT.


STUFF NO ONE WANTS TO DEAL WITH - MADE SIMPLE BY THE RPA!

Event Fees and Financial Accounting:

At this time, the online registration requests the attendee pay the RPA a base rate of $45.00 through the online store, you can adjust this fee up via the online event creation tool. Collect any extra funds at the event. If you need the registration fees before the event, contact the RPA.

download a clinic organizer invoice here

The basic planning process to insuring your event is break even or in favor of the RPA is:

  1. Publish the event online at least two months prior to the date, longer if able. The RPA will publish an Event Notice to advertise to members.
  2. Based on pre-event online registrations, determine the event fee based on your cost model divided by members attending plus a margin for error. The goal is never to end the event in the red.
  3. Set up a system for attendee arrival that insures the event fee is paid at the time of indoc/arrival. This is crucial!
  4. Send all funds to the Treasurer immediately after the event.
  5. Send the treasurer your event costs along with #4. These should have primarily been placed on one account/charge card, perhaps an RPA card if you requested one. If you paid for the event costs, the treasurer will immediately send you the funds electronically, or by RPA check as applicable.

Why can't you just pay for everything and have the attendees pay you personally? Well, we're a Federal Non Profit, everyone should take advantage of the tax implications, including the organizer!

Who is compted and what is compted?

1. One designated Clinic Instructor Pilot (IP) and Check Pilot (CP)
(FAST Clinics for Wing and Leads)

The RPA will cover the organizer's "designated" IP and CP for FAST clinics for hotel room and shared car. The IP must agree to, and execute, on managing a well run training clinic to include presentations, safety/training briefs and student scheduling.

2. All others: Instructors (Formation, Aerobatics, Etc.), RPA Officers, Vendors, Local Officials, Media

This is up to you. Obviously if you comp several such folks, your revenue heads down and the cost of the event rises. The RPA members expect to contribute to the cause. You can provide for your back seat instructors in other ways, such as a staff vehicle, etc. If a vendor is profiting from the event, and benefiting from your services (food, drink, etc.), we suggest you charge them to share in the cost, which is otherwise carried by our members. Our relationship with the media is important and the RPA attempts to assist them in any way possible.

Insure you communicate your fee policy to the attendees before arrival. You can do this in the information you provide for the "Event Bulletin" the RPA will publish for your event. The golden rule is; keep it simple - a complicated event fee system with some compted and others not causes confusion.



Equipment Requirements:

There is a minimum amount of equipment and supplies you will need to have for a successful Fly-in, the RPA has two "event kits" floating around the system with some equipment available. Most equipment can be FedExed to the site at RPA expense or provided by local vendors. The RPA will cover your costs; preferably from collected event fees...

  1. White Board & Dry Erase Markers. To post the flight schedules (crew, operating area, times)
  2. File Folders to hold registration packets and/or training forms
  3. PC Projector - RPA has several
  4. Laptop
  5. Chalks (if FBO can not support tie downs, etc.)
  6. Scuba Air (somebody will be buying you a beer)
  7. Nitrogen (jets)
  8. Rental Van(s)
  9. Photocopied Forms for registration packets