Written by Sheila Geraghty
Historic Flight Foundation inspires and educates students of all ages. With aviation-based STEM as its cornerstone, it also offers flight experiences and training for pilots and mechanics. History presentations emphasize imagination, courage and dedication for the advancement of technology. Historic Flight Foundation Spokane also encourages activities to stimulate aerospace economic development. High quality social and community events make use of its facility.
Last fall, the Foundation opened within the Felts Field Historic District . The new building features a permanent STEM Lab with artifacts, personal histories and restorations to help our students appreciate the many ways science, technology, engineering and mathematics play a vital role in everyday life. Science and engineering STEM offerings align with Washington learning standards required for grades 5, 8 and 11. Consequently, the program becomes the ally of teachers as required subject matter is covered in a creative and interactive way.
In more typical times, the aviation-based STEM experience begins with a classroom presentation by an experienced teacher/docent. Most members of our STEM faculty have enjoyed tremendous careers as aerospace engineers or pilots. The hour-long presentations end with background reading assignments and exercises in preparation for a visit to the museum where groups engage in concept identification and problem-solving. We are grateful local philanthropists, such as Avista Foundation, have provided resources for such critical aspects as transportation. Should the presentations of necessity become virtual, we will pivot to production of the same content through the Internet. Since closure in March, HFF has produced nine virtual presentations on aviation history ranging from the Battle of Britain to the Trans-Pacific Dole Race. You may find these on Youtube.
Also during the shutdown, HFF has held successful social distancing “Tarmac Tours” enabling families and supporters to view the vintage plane collection from their cars, on the Felts Field tarmac, and have a great time doing so. Look for our next one August 15 (10-4) featuring a display of antique planes and cars. If we do not see you on August 15, we hope to see you when Spokane County advances to Phase 3 and HFF returns to a regular museum schedule.
For more information contact: Sheila Geraghty at 535-6000