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Millington Barnstormers host big summer event featuring helicopter pilots from across United States

By Thomas Sellers Jr.Barnstormers 1 Barnstormers 2 Barnstormers 3 Barnstormers 4 Barnstormers 5 Barnstormers 6 Barnstormers 7 Barnstormers 8 Barnstormers 9

Day and night, the models took to the Millington sky for the Mid-South Heli Invasion 2014.
Hosted by the Millington Barnstormers June 20-22, more than 30 helicopter pilots for Tennessee, Oklahoma, Lousiana and other states flew their model and scale helicopters at 4236 Sykes Road.
“It’s a fun fly for pilots around the area to come in and fly their helicopter,” event organizer Steve Copous said. “It’s a general meet and greet to have fun and meet other pilots. You get to see people maybe you’ve never met before, win some prizes some of our sponsors sent us.”
Friends, family and fans of flight came out for the three-day event to watch gas, battery and electric helicopters take flight and do stunts. Pilots as young as pre-teen and veterans were behind the controls day and night.
“I’ll be flying a little bit,” Copous said. “I have a set up to where I’ll be flying at night. I have a nice light setup to fly when it’s pitch black.
“You’re controlling several different aspects,” he noted. “You’re controlling pitch, elevation which is up and down, elevator which if forward to backward. It’s similar terms to flying an airplane. But flying it is more like balancing an oil cover ball in zero gravity. It’s extremely difficult and it takes a lot of precession and correcting in midair. It’s a lot of practice and a lot hard work.”
Beginner model helicopters can cost in the hundreds. Most of the helicopters featured at the Millington Barnstormers’ event started at $1,500. Learning how to fly on of the helicopters is just part of the education.
A pilot must now how to charge one, fuel a helicopter and under the radio control panel. The experts took time between flights to explain how to take flight.
Among the education, food, conversations and flights, the weekend was for exposure and pure enjoyment.
“It’s just for fellowship and fun,” Copous concluded. “Everybody likes to get together and fly. It’s all about being social and friendly with your fellow helicopter pilots.”

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