Pilots are always out for a new adventure. General aviation pilots want to enjoy the freedom to fly and explore new places along the way. So Lightspeed asked our GA pilot community to share about their favorite GA airport and what makes it special to them and the pilot community it serves.
Enjoy reading about these notable GA Airports from the following pilots in the Northern U.S.
Brad Boyd: New Jersey
My GA Airport is Ocean County Airport (KMJX), near Tom’s River NJ. I love my airport because it reminds me of why I fly. Aviation is a community built on trust, dedication and mutual assistance. We look out for each other, and MJX and it’s crew has these qualities and more. When I show up at my hangar, there’s mix of trainers, corporate jets, helicopters and old timers, but the Ford Tri Motor, Beech 18 and P-51 Mustang that sit in my hangar get me every time I come to work. The vast the history of these 3 birds alone is humbling, having touched so many and left a lasting impact. I’m so grateful that someone is keeping these birds flying to keep the dream and history of aviation alive. As a corporate pilot, I depend on the mechanics, line service, and airport staff to do my job, but it’s the flow of this amazing aviation culture that brings it all together, and that keeps me coming back for the next flight. Ocean County Airport is my airport, and it makes me proud to be a small part of General Aviation!
Lidia Ruiz: Wisconsin
My name is Lidia Ruiz, and my favorite airport is my home airport, KAUW, in Wausau, Wisconsin.
My GA journey started at this airport four years ago. As an aviation enthusiast, being able to participate and volunteer in the events that make the Wausau downtown airport special continues to feed my passion for aviation today. KAUW has a rich history in aviation and is home to many programs targeted at getting more people involved in aviation. Programs like “Learn Build Fly” are available to get youth more interested in aviation and engineering while mentoring them in hands-on activities like using Solidworks, operating CNC machinery, and actively helping to build an aircraft. KAUW is great at getting the public involved in flying through programs like “Pilot for a Day” and “Air Cadet for a Day.” KAUW has also hosted the AirVenture Cup Race for 2 consecutive years. This local airport has been around for many historical events and continues to inspire people to get involved in aviation today. From the older generations coming by on Friday mornings for coffee, homemade snacks (courtesy of the airport management), and conversations about airplanes and the olden days, to student pilots learning to fly, to air shows and air races, the Wausau Downtown Airport has a thriving aviation community. I couldn’t ask for a better place to learn to fly or spend my time. Come by and visit!
Jamie Labocki: New Jersey
I would bet that Aeroflex/Andover Airport (12N) has produced more pilot smiles than any other airport in the country. The approach takes you through the valleys of northern New Jersey and over gorgeous lakes. The lakes on both ends restrict the runway to 1981’ which forces pilots to be precise with their speed, altitude, and touch down. What makes this airport even more fun is touching down on the grass runway. It’s so satisfying when you get it right!
You can get great tailwheel training here in a Piper Cub, Stearman, or a Chipmunk. After you’ve touched down, enjoy a walk at Kittatinny Valley State Park, which is a few steps away from the ramp. Plan ahead and rent a kayak to float in Lake Aeroflex. Watching the planes from a kayak is such a great experience.
Andover is a peaceful, little airport and it will take you back in time when flying was simple and pure fun.