Aerprize Winners Touch Down in California


Aerprize winners Carmel Byrne and Conor Kennedy touched down in Southern California last week just in time for their first Fourth of July celebration stateside, complete with a backyard barbecue, funny hats (don’t ask), and a patriotic firework display from the pier in Seal Beach.


Winners of the scholarship sponsored by Angel City Flyers (ACF), Carmel and Conor are enrolled in ACF’s 141 PPL course, training to get their private pilot certificate with instructors Karlie Isenhower and Jeremy Chavez in ACF’s state-of-the-art DiamondStar fleet.

Highlights so far:

“Flying through LAX Class B airspace in the DA40 was really exciting,” says Carmel. “We could see the massive planes above and below us.” In the busy Los Angeles/Long Beach airspace, they’ve witnessed A380 airliners rushing overhead as they master the art of single engine aircraft.

Steep turns in the local Long Beach practice area gave Conor a G-force thrill, he says. And both student pilots savored the view along the Riviera-like Laguna Beach coastline en route to Palomar (KCRQ).

The excitement of learning to fly in southern California comes with gustatory pleasures, like the famous tri-tip sandwiches at Waypoint Café in Camarillo (KCMA), and a bit of time off to tour Venice Beach and Santa Monica.

Next up: More ground and flight lessons on an intense daily schedule, with a bit of a break for ACF’s Third Thursday event on July 19 in their honor.

We’re thrilled to have Carmel and Conor with us on this journey and see their progress along the way.


Aerprize is sponsored by Aero City Group Inc. in Long Beach, California.