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The Eaton Calendar – August 18
- Two Pilots Bring Flight Training Back to Wellsboro Johnston Airport
- Staggering Unicorn Winery is a Regular at Wellsboro Growers Market on Thursdays
- Vineyard Church Band Musicians to Give Free Concert Outdoors This Friday, August 21
- Like A Hurricane Tribute to the Music of Neil Young & Crazy Horse Free Outdoor Concert is Friday, August 28
- There are Still Openings in the Saturday, August 29 Refuse To Be A Victim® Class
TWO PILOTS BRING FLIGHT TRAINING BACK TO WELLSBORO JOHNSTON AIRPORT
Two pilots, one certified to fly helicopters and the other fixed-wing aircraft, have brought flight training back to the Wellsboro Johnston Airport at 112 Runway Road in Delmar Township, about six miles from Wellsboro.
“I am giving lessons to anyone who wants to learn how to fly,” said Mike Bowser Jr.
Currently, Bowser is the only certified fixed wing flight instructor, instrument and multi-engine flight instructor and advanced ground and instrument ground instructor at the airport to train current and future pilots.
He offers all levels of fixed wing flight instruction from private pilot to commercial pilot and flight instructor as well as training for instrument ratings, flight reviews (required every two years for every pilot), instrument competency checks and refresher training for rusty pilots. “In addition, I can provide Introductory flights or flight experiences for those that simply want to try flying a small airplane,” said Bowser.
“I had always been involved in aviation because of my love of flying,” he said. Bowser learned how to fly in 1968 and 1969 while attending Montana State University. “I would do whatever kind of work was available at the airport to help pay for my flying lessons.”
As a 20-year-old, Bowser earned his commercial pilot’s license in 1970; graduated in 1971 from Southeastern State University in Oklahoma with a BS degree in Professional Aviation, and, earned his flight instructor license in 1972.
“I flew professionally for several years doing flight instructing, charter flying and as a commuter airline pilot,” he said. Bowser then attended the University of Pennsylvania Dental School of Medicine, graduating in 1977 with a DMD degree and opening a dental practice in York, Pa.
For more than 40 years, Bowser has held the crown jewel of pilot ratings, an Airline Transport Pilot Certificate, the highest certification the Federal Aviation Administration awards a pilot. The ATP rating is for those who make a lifelong career of aviation and are knowledgeable in aeronautics, aviation law, physiology, aeromedical factors, meteorology and aerodynamics.
In addition to operating his dental practice, Bowser continued as an active flight instructor from the 1970s through the 1990s.
In November of 2017, after retiring from dentistry, Bowser and his wife moved to the log home they had built near the airport in 2013 so they could spend time visiting his parents, Nan and Mike Bowser Sr. who lived in Wellsboro.
“I started working as a flight instructor in 2017 through Craig Musser, Wellsboro Johnston Airport manager and president of his own company Canyon Aero, LLC,” Bowser said.
In the summer of 2018, Musser relocated to Williamsport taking his Cessna 172 trainer with him. “That left the Wellsboro airport with no plane that could be used for training or be rented by qualified pilots who did not own a plane to do the required two-year flight reviews and instrument pilot certifications,” Bowser said.
With the support of the Canyon Pilots Association and the Grand Canyon Airport Authority, Zack Martin of Covington formed Aviation Essentials, LLC in 2019. With financial backing from four association members, Martin’s new company bought a Cessna 172 Skyhawk to use as a trainer in April of this year.
“The members of both organization’s want this to be a success,” said Bowser who first met Martin at the August 2019 Canyon Pilots Association meeting.
“Zack is interested in offering training services on how to operate the Cessna 172. I am hoping that others will do that, too,” Bowser said.
“I plan to extend my helicopter flight instructor rating to include fixed wing aircraft so I can teach people how to fly the Cessna,” said Martin. “To accomplish that, I need to do a checkride. I meet all of the FAA’s other requirements. “During the checkride, an FAA examiner will be in the cockpit watching what I do to ensure that I have the needed skills to be certified as a fixed wing flight instructor. My goal is to get that done by this fall,” he said. “Some day, I would also like to buy a helicopter and teach people how to fly it,” he added.
Martin grew up in Canton, Pa., joined the Army and began learning how to fly helicopters in 2008. In 2013, he became a certified helicopter flight instructor. After being on active duty for seven years, including serving from 2011 to 2012 in Afghanistan and being stationed in Alaska and Alabama, he joined the Pennsylvania National Guard for two years.
“My first civilian job was flying a helicopter with the Geisinger Life Flight program,” Martin said. “I am now flying a helicopter for the Blaise Alexander auto dealerships.
“In 2016, my wife and I moved to Wellsboro and started farming on a small scale, mostly on rented ground. In 2019, we bought a farm in Covington, which is where we live now and are growing certified organic grain.”
Those who would like to learn how to fly have to be at least 16 years of age to take flight training and 17 to be a licensed private pilot. The minimum requirement is 40 hours of flight time to get a license, including at least 20 hours of flight training and 10 hours of solo time.
The airport also has a flight simulator that can be used to supplement flight training.
Those interested in more information, about instruction and plane rental, are welcome to contact Mike Bowser at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (717) 676-1771 or Zack Martin at email@example.com.
Photo by John Eaton
Mike Bowser is shown with the Cessna Skyhawk he uses to train pilots.
STAGGERING UNICORN WINERY IS A REGULAR AT WELLSBORO GROWERS MARKET
Frank and Christy Maffei of Athens Township have been making wines for almost 30 years but only began bringing them to the Wellsboro Growers Market every Thursday after opening their own winery.
The market is open from 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Thursdays on the front lawn of the First Presbyterian Church at 130 Main Street in Wellsboro, weather permitting.
“Christy and I had a hard time finding the sweet and semi-sweet fruit and berry wines we liked. We would drive to the Finger Lakes and buy one here and one there. That’s when we decided to try making our own,” Frank said.
“I am the winemaker and enjoy experimenting,” he said. “My first attempts were disastrous. I did a ton of reading before I began to successfully make wines that we actually enjoyed drinking. I’ve thrown a lot away when they didn’t work.
“We would serve our wines to friends and family and they began knocking on our door asking for them. Truthfully, I wish I had gotten into the wine business 30 years ago as a young man. I am 55 now.”
Christy and Frank were raised in Athens Township. “When I first met her we were both working at the Acme supermarket in Sayre. We married in 1990.
“On Dec. 21, 2016, we started Staggering Unicorn Winery and will be celebrating our fourth year in the wine business on Dec. 21, 2020. When we opened we only had one wine to offer, Crimson Queen, a cranberry wine.” Today, the winery offers 24 different flavors and is close to introducing its 25th.
“My newest wine is a lavender vanilla. I am asking friends and family for their suggestions and our family will choose the name that fits it best. Two of our other new wines are Winter’s Kiss, a mint chocolate that tastes like an Andes chocolate mint, and Court Jester, a banana wine that is proving to be quite popular.
“The four of us, me, my wife and our two daughters, Emily who was 22 at the time and Alexandra who was 13, sat down and discussed what we should name our winery. Our daughters said Unicorn. My wife said, “Since our wine has a high alcohol content we should call it the Staggering Unicorn and the name stuck.
“We built our house in 2004. In 2016, we converted our dining room into a tasting room with a private, handicapped accessible entrance. It is small and cozy and decorated in medieval style, including unicorns.
“The way I make wines is not unique. It’s the same way a lot of home winemakers do. I still do a ton of reading. It always reminds me about out how much I don’t know about winemaking.
“All of our wines are fruit based. We buy a lot of frozen fruit all year round from a frozen food wholesaler like honeysuckle, pomegranate, grapefruit, blackberry and blueberry, along with local fruits in season like pears, peaches and raspberries as well as basil and mint. We also make wines using coffee, maple and ginger.
“It can take me anywhere from a few months to a year to make a wine, depending on how long it takes the wine to clear and the yeast to settle.”
At the market, Frank does wine tastings and sells his Staggering Unicorn wines by the bottle. Other vendors bring homegrown fruits and vegetables, jams, jellies, preserves, pickles, relishes, fresh baked goods, meats, embroidery, candles, soaps, etc.
Customers are asked to wear face masks and maintain six feet of distance between themselves and others.
Vendors who want to participate are asked to call Thomas Putnam at (570) 439-2000 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo by John Eaton
Christy and Frank Maffei are shown in their tasting room.
Photo by John Eaton
Frank Maffei is shown with Staggering Unicorn wines before the Wellsboro Growers Market opens to the public. During the market, masks are worn by customers and vendors.
VINEYARD CHURCH BAND MUSICIANS TO GIVE FREE CONCERT OUTDOORS THIS FRIDAY, AUGUST 21
At 6 p.m. this Friday, Aug. 21, singer-songwriter Jesse Gotschal will play several of his genre-bending folk originals to open the free concert being presented by Vineyard Church Band instrumentalists and singers on the outdoor stage on the Central Avenue side of the Deane Center for the Performing Arts at 104 Main Street, Wellsboro.
Following Gotschal’s performance, Jon Ruth on drums, Jason Matthews on lead guitar, Carolyn Ruth on bass guitar, and Karsen Kennedy on acoustic guitar joined by vocalists Brett Kennedy, Lorynn Dowling and McKenzie Frank will play and sing an eclectic mix of contemporary Christian music and popular songs. Among them will be “Waymaker” and “Reckless Love” along with cover tunes by U2, Bon Jovi, and Garth Brooks.
Gotschal is well known in this area for his performances with Rich Rawson’s Scene at the Deane concerts from 2012 to 2014, two years of performing at open mic night at the Deane Center and on First Fridays from May to October from 2015 to 2019 in front of Pop’s Culture Shoppe and the Native Bagel.
“I’ve been playing music my whole life,” Gotschal said. “I grew up in Wellsboro. For a decade or so, until the early 2000s, I drove from Wellsboro to Williamsport to play music. I think I actually started writing music when I was in Williamsport. My wife and I went to Washington state, bounced around for a while and then from 2008 to 2010, I performed at the Coffee and Tea Room, located near the Bullfrog Brewery in Williamsport. In 2010, my wife and I got a recreational vehicle and took our daughter to Houston, Texas. I played at coffee shops in that area. We returned to Wellsboro in 2012.
“My musical influences were and continue to be what I am listening to and like at the time I am writing songs,” he said. Among them are Pink Floyd, Tool, 90s era grunge and American singer-songwriter Iron & Wine. “I’ve always been more comfortable writing originals rather than playing someone else’s cover tunes,” said Gotschal.
“My wife and I own and operate Northeast Colors Painting, Ltd. in Wellsboro. We keep all of our supplies in a six by 12-foot trailer and drive to jobs painting homes and businesses in the area. We are both members of the Vineyard Church, which holds worship services at the Deane Center in Wellsboro. Today, I consider my music as more of a hobby and enjoy playing in the church band and jamming with friends a couple of nights a week.”
Photo by John Eaton
Jesse Gotschal plays one of his originals on his acoustic guitar.
LIKE A HURRICANE TRIBUTE TO THE MUSIC OF NEIL YOUNG & CRAZY HORSE FREE OUTDOOR CONCERT IS FRIDAY, AUGUST 28
Like A Hurricane, a four-member band based in Syracuse, New York, will present a tribute to the music of Neil Young & Crazy Horse at 6 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 28, at the Deane Center for the Performing Arts at 104 Main Street in Wellsboro.
The band will perform on the outdoor stage, which is on the Central Avenue side of the Deane Center building. The concert is free. Donations are appreciated.
The show captures the sound and spirit of a Neil Young live concert, from his solo work to his studio recordings with Crazy Horse, Buffalo Springfield and Crosby Stills and Nash, from intimate acoustic songs with soulful lyrics to driving electric guitars. Included are folk and rock songs; well-known favorites as well as a number of album cuts and hidden gems audiences don’t ordinarily hear.
The tribute will begin with an acoustic set featuring “Old Man”, “Heart of Gold”, “Harvest Moon” and “Ohio”, as well as some album gems like “Pocahontas”. Their electric set features classics like “ “Cinnamon Girl”, “Cortez the Killer”, “Rockin’ in the Free World”, “Down by the River” and of course, “Like A Hurricane.”
Lead vocalist is Thom Hogan on electric and acoustic guitars, harmonica, and piano. Mike Vertino plays bass guitar; Jeff Roney, drums and percussion; and Pete “Pedro” Shank, electric and acoustic guitars and keyboards. Mike, Jeff and Pedro all sing harmony vocals.
“Like A Hurricane was the result of a conversation I had in the winter of 2017-18 with Pedro, a fellow musician and friend,” Hogan said. “Four of us went into rehearsals, working from Neil’s extensive catalog of material. The two musicians who had joined us in January, departed at the end of May 2018 as their performance schedules were too demanding to dedicate the time necessary for what we required,” said Hogan.
“Pedro and I began searching for two more musicians. Mike and I had known each other for a number of years and worked on a project together. I asked Mike and he said yes and suggested Jeff who had played with the two of us at a great jam session held several years earlier. Jeff had impressed us both. He is the drummer with Dark Hollow, a successful Grateful Dead cover band, also based in Syracuse,” Hogan said.
“Mike, Jeff, Pedro and I are the founding members of this band,” said Hogan. “We began a heavy rehearsal schedule in June and played our first Like A Hurricane show on Dec. 21, 2018,” he said.
“I feel extremely fortunate to play with the three of them,” said Hogan. “They are quality performers and great guys. As a group, we are dedicated to giving our audience an authentic Neil Young live concert experience. It’s wonderful for his fans to have a chance to hear his songs performed live and a shared experience for the audience and for us because we all love Neil’s music,” Hogan said.
For this free concert, bring lawn chairs and sit on the grass in front of the outdoor stage or on Central Avenue, which will be closed to traffic between Main Street and the Warehouse Theatre to provide space for social distancing.
Like A Hurricane includes (from left to right) Pedro Shank. Mike Vertino. Thom Hogan and Jeff Roney.
THERE ARE STILL OPENINGS IN THE SATURDAY, AUGUST 29 REFUSE TO BE A VICTIM® CLASS
There are still openings in the Refuse To Be A Victim® class being offered from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Aug. 29 at the Lambs Creek Sportsman’s Club at 339 Sportsman’s Club Road, Mansfield, Pa. Only five spaces remain.
Those attending will learn the basic principles of crime prevention. Topics to be discussed are: mental preparedness, home security, psychology of criminals, automotive security, travel security, physical security, cyber security and personal protection. No instruction about firearms or use of firearms is taught in this class.
“This is not a gun or shooting class. It is about what people can do to help protect themselves and their property,” said Instructor Marilyn Jones.
The four-hour class is limited to 12 men and women.
The fee is $15 per person to cover the cost of the book, room use and water, coffee and soda. Call Marilyn Jones at (570) 549-2794 to register or for answers to questions about this class.