If you were going to join an air league club in NSW, Maitland would have to be the one after winning best air activities squadron in NSW two years in a row.
The win means the local squadron participates in more activities than any other club in the state.
But some might be asking, whats air league?
The Australian Air League is for kids aged 8 to 18 with a passion for aviation, fun and adventure. As opposed to the RAAF cadets, it’s not military affiliated.
We push so hard to get the boys everything they can possibly do.Officer in command Colin Mathews
The Australian Air League Maitland squadron is a boys only group, contains 20 members and meets on Friday nights at the Royal Aero Newcastle Club (RNAC) at Rutherford.
They engage in flight activities with tiger moths, gliders and helicopters.
“We try to do at least four to six flights a year, weather depending,” officer in command Colin Mathews said.
The squadron also has guest speakers visit such as Red Bull air race competitor Matt Hall.
And while the air league doesn’t run flying lessons, it does allow the kids to gain badges and learn general proficiency towards gaining their pilot’s licence.
One of the squadron members, Mr Mathews’s son, has earned his recreational pilot’s licence at just 17 years of age.
Mr Mathews said he was wrapped the squadron had won the best air activities award as they worked hard to give the kids a lot of opportunities.
“We push so hard to get the boys everything they can possibly do,” he said.
“We want parents to see where their money is going and what the boys are achieving.
“And they all work so hard. When they go up in a flight at RNAC, we make them check the oil and fuel and do all the behind the scenes things other than flying.
“There’s discipline, but there’s a lot of fun too.
“They’re a great bunch of kids, they’re all mates.”
Mr Mathews said the win was also a great way for the squadron to get its name out there.
“A lot of people in the community don’t know about us,” he said.
“Some boys may not like soccer or cricket, so this is something else for young boys to do.”