Around the Airport

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Lee Bottom to Exchange Hamburgers for Help

Have you heard about The $100 Hamburger Tornado Relief Fundraiser Fly-In?  Ron Wilson has.

“Here’s your first $100. Tell everyone I challenge them to do the same”. Spoken by Ron Wilson last month.

Consider these sentences; “How about we go for a hundred dollar hamburger”, or “We flew up to the airport today to get hundred dollar hamburger”.  How many times have you heard conversations that included them? Yes, as long as I can remember the hundred dollar hamburger has been a staple in aviation circles for laughing off the ridiculous amounts of money we sometimes spend to go flying. Getting food just seems to be the most worthy excuse to aviate and, in my mind, I couldn’t agree more.
Look!  A burger in the sky!
Now ask yourself what you would do if you could actually get a hundred dollar hamburger and help out aviation in the process? What if that burger helped keep an airport alive? What if that hamburger could directly affect aviation in a positive way? Would you be hungry for such a burger? If so, now’s your chance to get one.
Announcing the $100 Hamburger Tornado Relief Fundraiser Fly-In. After every structure, every piece of equipment, and everything we use to put on events was either damaged or destroyed by a tornado on March 2nd, we were forced to reconsider what we’d do with the events that were already being planned. In the end, there was only one solution; cancel all events and replace the fly-in with a fundraiser. That’s how the $100 Hamburger Tornado Relief Fundraiser Fly-In was born.
Being held in place of the usual fly-in at the end of September, this event, hosted by friends of Lee Bottom, will last one day and run from 10-5 on Saturday September 29th. The rain date is Sunday September 30th. If you would like to attend, the following is what you need to know.
For every $100 gift, friends of Lee Bottom will cook you a burger and accompany it with chips and a drink. Thus, the $100 Hamburger. To get in the event, a $100 gift per person is required. Kids under 17 get in free and their burger will be $5. If you give your gift before September 1st, two can get in for a gift of $150. If you would like to give but cannot be here, we’ll give your burger to a kid. Corporate sponsorships, which will appear on limited edition shirts, are $500. That’s all you need to know. Flying or driving, that’s how it works.
When we first came up with the idea for this, admittedly we wondered how people would react. Thankfully, the initial reaction has been positive. There were questions though.

Some people asked about insurance for the damaged property. Well, the truth is that we were under insured. There were two reasons for this. First, since the chances of being hit by a tornado are so slim, we considered a fire to be the biggest potential disaster. Yet, secondly and more importantly, we were under insured because we were pinching pennies to keep the events, that so many people had come to love, going. Because of this, we had everything set to the lowest survivable levels. We were then hit by a tornado that damaged every single thing on the airport. That’s all there is to it.
Some people asked about FEMA. It is scary to me how many people believe government is there to help and how many people assume it does just that whenever there is a disaster. "FEMA money," as everyone calls it, is for people who have nothing. If you have insurance, then you’re out of luck.
What about FAA or government grants? Well, if you are a county owned airport that is funded by tax dollars you can get additional government tax dollar funding pretty easy. Fly around the country and look at all the airports that have world class towers currently being replaced with prettier world class towers. Money is being wasted at airports across the country like never before but for places like ours, nothing is available. That said, who would want it? If you take it, you follow their rules.
What do you plan to do with the funds? Well, our goal is to repair what we have and then build a new facility that would allow us to more easily host events. This would include a hangar with restrooms, showers, and a basic kitchen. It would also give us a facility to host events that would generate revenue to keep the airport going; weddings, meetings, concerts, car shows, etc.  We've needed this all along and such a facility is critical to the long term viability of the field.
All things considered, if we are to rebuild we have no choice but to go this alone and that is why this year the friends of Lee Bottom are hosting The $100 Hamburger Tornado Relief Fundraiser Fly-In. If you are interested in participating, please check out our website to give and to read up on some of the details that will be different from other events.
Today, no repairs have been started and our estimated losses, after insurance, are well over $150,000.
Notes:
*You are welcome to come early and camp but transportation, food, showers, etc will be on you. This will be equivalent to a Sinful Sunday event in terms of services available.
*We do have rooms at the Clifty Inn reserved for the weekend. The code is on the website.
*If ten people show up for a hamburger, it will generate more airport funding than any of our events in history.
*If you usually attended all our summer events, you only have to pay the gas for one trip. This is likely equivalent to a $100 Hamburger.
*If you plan to attend, please bring a chair. Most of our picnic tables, standard tables, and chairs were shredded in the storm.
*Please share the details of this event with your friends.

*See those buttons there at the bottom below this last line?  Those are there to help you share this post with all your close, distant, and social network friends.  Try them out and spread the word.

12 comments:

Larry Bothe said...

I'm about to leave for Oshkosh. If I can afford to go to Oshkosh for a week I can afford a hundred bucks to help Rich & Ginger recover from the tornado. My chack will be in tomorrow's mail. I'll try to get down to Lee Bottom on September 29th to have my hamburger, but if I don't make it I'm sure some young person will enjoy it for me.

Larry Bothe, FAA Designated Pilot Examiner

NormC said...

Count me in. If I can't get there due to work or weather, then those are the breaks. I will still be donating $100 on line. With a little luck I'll bring the family for some camping and cover them too.

Norm Crawford

Anonymous said...

You all can count me out ! Sounds like you would be better off on the Obama campaign. All i hear from you people is how everyone needs to give you their hard earned money. Like its no expense for us to keep our tube and fabric planes in the air. Most people would love to get a free airfield and not keep wanting more and more for free. Just sell it ! (friendship ends where money begins )

Rich Davidson said...

That's nice Mr. ANONYMOUS,
I appreciate your input and your opinion. As for the Obama campaign,you are angry about him and I cannot disagree. But like in politics, if you want a better candidate or in this case a truly friendly old time flying field to stay open to people like you, then surely you understand wethat must campaign for the funds to beat out the others. If you do not like fields lime ours so be it. We all have our interests. But if you do like places like ours, the least you could do is state who you are like a respectable person would do, then give to you local flying field if any still exist in your area that are open to the public.

Frank LaGreca said...

Rich, you are a gentleman. Your courtious response to "anonymous" was better than he deserved. As a partner in a Champ with Larry Bothe, I will gladly contribute a $100 toward the purchase of a hamburger and its cause.

Frank LaGreca

David Cain said...

Ron Wilson, I'll match your $100 and raise you $50 as I just did via pay-pal. As the owner of a cub and a C-172, as well as my own grass field, it takes money in aviation even if you don't fly. Lee Bottom is certainly as worthy as any other cause out there.

Anonymous said...

Rich,
I've never been to you airport(yet) but I still hope to some day. Does my $100 April 23rd check for the 'general fund' count for a burger?

;-) Just kidding! I'm glad to see that someone came up with a theme for others to rally around. Best wishes.

Paul Burgette

Ken & Terri Bittner said...

You know...the old saying is "somebody has to do it".
Well...Rich & Ginger "do it" for all of us out here that enjoy GA in one form or another. Besides all the other contributions that they make to GA, they give us a place to go...both here online and at their (home) airport.
Sounds to me like someone (who posted on here) has some "sour grapes".
Mark my words...we'll have the best time yet this Sept. and Mr. "sour grapes" won't be missed!

Anonymous said...

I also think Rich was being polite to 'Mr. A'. I remember Rich purchasing a farm to extend the runway several years back and also purchasing another adjoining piece of property recently to add a sea plane lane. I am pretty sure he used his own 'hard earned money' to do this – just as he does to put on all the events we all enjoy.

I know that when I purchase 100LL for my tube and fabric plane, a portion of it goes to support the government subsidized concrete runway airports but I prefer grass. What use is an old plane without an airport to enjoy it at? Pretty soon, they will all be gone and then we'll all be complaining. So, if I can buy a $100 burger to help out and keep the land from being planted in corn, I'm in.

And, I'm not sure if ‘Mr. BM’ is the same as ‘Mr. A’ but it sounded to me like this special one time deal is being put on by 'Friends of Lee Bottom' to help him out. So, those that can attend will and those that can't won't. Maybe those that can will make enough $$$ to be able to re-purchase all the needed equipment and make the repairs so Rich can have events again next year??? I hope so.

On 2nd thought, I’m going to make by burger a double. Super size that order please!

Don L.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous and other pilots and human beings.
Shame, shame on anonymous. Put your money where you mouth is and buy Lee Bottom Flying Field ("Sell it") if you think it is a money making venture. This GA is not the Davidson's livelihood! Reread that! Having volunteered past 8 years I often wondered why they threw a big party at their expense for pilots. Besides where's your compassionate side? This is a benefit/ fund raiser due to a MAJOR TORNADO that hit S.Indiana declared NATIONAL DISASTER (By the PRES) WITH FEMA (WHATEVER THAT IS) that affected the Davidsons heavily for which they recd tetnus shots ONLY, from taxpayers money. This is not the only catostrophy they have endured to entertain pilots--Hurricane, Mudslide, hail damage for starts, and the rainout that left them in the hole. Give till it hurts for a worthy cause whether you CHOOSE the $100 hamburger or give your money away to politicians (at $1000 and up per plate who live in monstrous houses) P.S. DAVIDSON'S never had a bathtub or oven in their one bedroom "house" BEFORE TORNADO HIT. You decide who you want to help AND WHICH ONE "YOU" WILL PERSONALLY BENEFIT FROM.

Anonymous said...

From Justin,
Might add we here in Indiana, USA, are experiencing our worst drought disaster ever. Yellow grass everywhere not to mention farm crops. FYI.
Justin X Grape, Raisin hope

Scott Sedam said...

To Anonymous ... Good God ... is anyone forcing you to go? What possible bitch can you have? These folks are trying to rebuild something that thousands have enjoyed so why not give this a shot? It is ONE day. I grew up not far from Madison and no one ever thought a tornado could do that kind of damage along a deep rever bottom. Have never seen it before. So give them a break and just go away. (P.s. and regarding your Obama comment, I am a defiant member of neither party (Totally Disenfranchhised, I call it)and yes, "O" and the Democrats have been shameful in their spending. Having said that, there have been NO greater feeders at the welfare trough than American business, especially big business, largely driven by the Republicans -- and don't forget farm price supports and mortgage interest deductions and the Corps of Engineers, among 100 others -- everyone wants to keep their own government deal and cancel overyone elses' -- it just happens to be fashionable of late to beat up on the less fortunate among us. Give it a break. I say this as a businessman of nearly 40 years.Sorry to continue the political stuff, which should have nothing to do with this, but I am just sick of the one-sided perspective -- from both sides.)