Nine great reasons to be in a rocket club

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Mar 14, 2009
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I looked at my launch logs and counted up the number of different places that I have launched at in the last 18 months. I have launched from 8 different fields! So why did I say nine in the thread title? Well, the last field on my list is one that I have yet to visit. People from my club travel to this field several times a year.

So here is the list:

Camp Birch - a Boy Scout site where the club helps the scouts with a build and fly. Pretty much a low power field.

Federal Road - Our regular winter field. This farm field supports high power and has a 10,000 foot waiver. Our club president found this field for us.

Graham High School - I helped a friend do a build and fly at the high school he teaches at. Low power only. Another plus - I later found out that several of the kids posted videos of their launches and the softball coach was furious that we "burned huge holes in his field!!!" For the record, other than footprints in the gravel near the pitcher's mound we didn't leave any trace of our activities. I always police the launch sites and pick up used igniters, plugs and even non-rocketry trash that I find lying around.

Lowry Road - A farmer’s field that we have launched at when our regular high power field was unavailable. Not certified for high power, but it might be some day. Again, our club president found this field for us.

Muncie, IN - The field used by the ROCI club. About an hour and a half away. This field is certified for high power.

Rip Rap Road - Our regular summer field. A private park that hosts numerous baseball and soccer fields and we are allowed to fly on a section of it. This is a low and mid power field.

Waco - An historic airfield and museum where our club has held several build and fly events. A low power field.

Wapakoneta - Our club has held demonstration launches on the front lawn of the Neil Armstrong museum in Wapakoneta, OH for special events. A low power field.

WVSOAR - The field used by another club about 2 hours away. This is the only field on this list that I haven’t been to myself, but a number of our members travel to this field regularly. It supports high power with a waiver around 4,000 to 5,000 feet.

Not only does being in a club allow you to meet other rocketeers, it can open you up to other launch sites. Our club works with scouts, schools, home school groups, local museums and other clubs. Our club president has a job that puts him into contact with a lot of farmers which really helps us find high power fields.
If you are at all into rocketry joining a club is a great idea. As a NAR member I now find myself going more and more to the Tripoli research day. All the local clubs have great launch sites were you can find someone to help you out with whatever crazy idea you have. I usually carpool to the site 2 hours away and when you are sitting in the car talking rockets, a two hour trip seems like nothing. So get off the couch and out of the basement, go hang out and fly some big motors. Breath in the clean mountain air.

Goin' on down to South Park to have a real good time! Goin' on down to South Park to see some friends of mine.
Hey Zeus-Cat, you forgot Wildman's Field, our old HP field. It's still used by Tripoli Mid Ohio. That makes ten reasons.:)
Well sir, I did say in the last 18 months. And I personally haven't gone to the dark side in that time period. If I expanded the time frame I could easily add four, five or even six more fields.