We just returned from the NBAA Schedulers and Dispatchers Conference, held January 22-24 in Phoenix, AZ. (OKAY…before you all get jealous; it was COLD, rainy and they actually had a dusting of snow (feel better now)? – and we thought we would come home with tans! Bonni at least braved swimming laps in the outdoor heated pool daily! Hey, steam was coming off the top…whirl pool with out the “whirl”!
Being the adventure enthusiasts that we are, Gail and I did take advantage of leaving New York a day and a half early to do some local sight seeing. Upon arrival we drove to Scottsdale to visit the Frank Lloyd Wright house, Taliesin West. You would be doing yourself a big disservice NOT to go see it if ever in this area. What a remarkable visionary man he was. Mixing his love of architecture and nature he created a unique style of building and organic teaching, which continues today as the complex is home to a school of organic architecture.
During the construction of the main buildings Wright and his students lived in tents on the property which they designed and created. His theory for choosing a good location was said to be: “go as far out of town as you are comfortable with and then double that!”
What an experience it must have been to have lived and worked under his tutelage. When the expansion boon started and power lines became visible…he reconstructed areas of his home and gardens to block them from his view.
We also attempted to do some hiking at, South Mountain Park, the largest in the country, located near Phoenix. Good thing for me (and my feet) the weather was not conducive for this undertaking, which Gail has done plenty of, including hiking the Grand Canyon. Whew!! I was off the hook!
Back to the real world…this was the second year that we attended this Conference and it had practically doubled in size. (Got MY hiking in there)! For two days we had the opportunity to talk to flight departments and dispatchers from all across the country and noticed quite a lot more foreign charter operations represented this year, especially Europe and the Caribbean.
We had a chance to make new contacts and thank others that already frequent our facility. In honor of our 60th anniversary we handed out postcards showcasing our new look including a $.60 per gallon fuel discount coupon on the back. We got a lot of good feed back and ideas of what the charter/scheduler departments are looking for when choosing a 1st class FBO such as New York Jet.
We recognize not only the importance of networking at these conventions, but the tremendous amount of knowledge to be gained from vendors and sharing ideas with other operators. We send our representatives to the NATA and NBAA conventions each year as well as attend various seminars given by Cessna on flight training and aircraft maintenance. One of our A&P mechanics, Hector Domena just attended a G1000 clinic in Wichita on January 9th.
Of course, the networking part of the convention does continue into the evening. Well….someone has to attend all those parties. Our fuel distributor, Avfuel, invited us to dinner at the Capitol Grill in Scottsdale. We spent the evening with 30 Avfuel employees and customers and dined on aged steak. The food was wonderful and it was so nice to spend time with some of the reps that we only see at conventions and/or speak to on the phone.
We came home with a lot of business contacts and hope to see some of these jets on our ramp in the near future…and don’t forget that $.60 per gallon fuel discount coupon!!
Bonni Van Camp
Corporate Services Manager
Gail Mancuso Jensen