Jul 25, 2010, 9:23 AM
Post #1 of 15
My name is Todd Tarlton. I have owned and opereted Gateway Air Service, Inc. at MOP for about 20 years. Gateway Air has operated freight services with Beech-18's for many years. Currently we provide maintenance services up to Commander 840 and fly pipeline patrol.
Through the last ten years of this time I have observed a local skydiving outfit change ownership and struggle to keep alive. I know this because I rent their facility to them and have provided sole maintenance for all these years.
I have watched old ownership do upwards of a 1000 tandems in a years time. Recently I reaquired the facility and decided to start a DZ with my wife and daughter Amanda. (Amanda Aviation)
My experience in general aviation is deep. I have a reputable FBO nand maintain a good working relationship with the city of Mt. Pleasant. Having raised 4 kids and with 3 of them married off now I am finally at a point in life to try some fun stuff. This DZ is part of that.
I am looking for a tandem instructor that will work with my daughter to build a business. I offer a beautiful 182H,a GREAT facility, above standard pay and possible partenership considered. I will advertise and promote the heck out of this venture. The area can easily support a focused skydiving business.
If I can offer more thoughts to a qualified individual, please call Gateway Air, Todd Tarllton 989-775-3515
And, yes there will be an additional skydiving business on the field. Hopefully, sooner than later.
"took over".....not hardly.......I built the building 6 years ago, put 100K of my own money into it and simply want it back to use for myself....it IS My facility and the growth of my own FBO dictates I need additional space. CMS had it very good for many years. I originally built the facility to house an operation that was doing some 800/1000 jumps per year. The three aircraft they had involved bought a LOT of maintenance from me. Numbers are way down now and the indirect value of offering cheap rent is no longer there. Just sayin.
My experience is 22 yeras of operating equipment in GA, 135 freight, pipe patrol and flight schools.......I am quite aware of the task ahead. There are many folks that try things in aviation that only last 2 to 3 years.....then there are the rest of us.
I do NOT need to make any part of my living from the dz and will reinvest every dollar back into it. I simply want to build a dz that is both fun and stable long into the future.
I will eventually complete my vision. Color will fill the sky, folks will smile and competion in the area will serve the customers well.
At this point in my life, I simply want to have fun!!
There are few FBOs that live and continue to grow for over 20 years straight. Why you would use the word "scam" is a bit concerning.
"scam" would be the folks living off of their engine reserves and neglecting 100hr inspections on the aircraft.......and yes, that does bring some folks to mind. Safety, safety, safety....fun,fun,fun,.........thanks for the "good luck" Make it a GREAT DAY!!!!!
Hey Todd, I agree with Jimmy, excellent post and great attitude! I think you will do well, heck if I was not about to start my own "adventure" I would be calling you.
I grew up on a DZ from the 60's to the 80's. I remember when I got back into the sport about 10 years ago after being out for even longer. The first thing I did was go and visit 3 of the larger operations and visited 2 of the largest boogies in the country. I wanted to see how the DZ managed to pull off 100+ tandems in one day (obviously with large AC, many rigs and staff) but the organizational side of it. Same with visiting the large boogies. I came back and started The SkyFest Boogie which has been considered by some to be one of the largest events for about 10 years now. It was a great experience and glad I did it.
With your posts I think folks would be lucky to have you as a DZO. I would also like to personally thank you for supporting the previous operations on your property and glad to see that you want to give it a go. We need more DZ's anywhere we can get them. Even if they are close to another, they should support each other for the growth of the sport as a whole. I wish your family and your new jump family the BEST of luck and success!
sounds almost too good to be true...if you are still around in a year or so when i finish up my time in the Corps i will def. look into it, if you still need some help. Good luck, blue skies, and remember to throw a boogie