Monday, May 26, 2008

Organizing an Air Show

In the last week or so there were interchanges on SARFLY about running an air show. These centered around the conflict between the SAMAA Manual of Procedure and what was actually possible.

The SAMAA MoP is a masterpiece of corporate, bureaucratic paternalism. It assumes SAMAA members must be protected from their own ignorance and stupidity. In its hundred plus pages are rules for every model flying activity. In particular the rules for running an air show are notoriously strict. The motive behind this -- that of safety – is good. The rules are ludicrous.

On the other hand, SAMAA members run many excellent air shows. What do some people know that others don't?

Gifford Pinchot encountered similar frustrations in the corporate world. To deal with them he set down the “ten commandments for an Intrepreneur”. Many of these apply to running an air show.

So, the apologies to Pinchot, and not entirely toungue-in-cheek, here are some rules:

Circumvent anything in the SAMAA MoP aimed at stopping you organizing your dream air show.
Do anything you need to make your air show succeed.
Find people to help you.
Follow your intuition about the people you choose and work only with the best.
Work underground as long as you can, publicity triggers the SAMAA immune response.
Remember that it is easier to ask for forgiveness than for permission.
Be true to your goals but be realsitic about the ways to achieve them.
Honour your sponsors.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nice post, and so true. Samaa is obsolete. Only a few clubs still insist on their presence. And those clubs are losing members...FAST.

There is proffesional rc helicopter pilots doing national shows/displays since the beginning of the year. has incorporated a whole rc helipilot team into their shows and displays.

And..WOW! they are great. I have watched them perform in BFN and these guys are absolute professionals!

And guess what, they want nothing to do with samaa! Saama is not even on their list of "not important" items. And all their shows are a huge success!

Well done boys!

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