Building Confidence in Children and Youth with Special Needs


Do you remember the first time you flew in an airplane? Do you know people that have never been on an airplane? It's hard to imagine at this day and age that not everyone has had an opportunity to fly in an airplane, but there are lots of people who have never been in any size aircraft.

Challenge Air Fly Days offer kids & youth with special needs AND their families an opportunity to ride in an airplane at no cost to the family.
On several occasions, not only is the flight experience a first for our special co-pilots, but it's often times a first for their mom, dad, grandparent and or/sibling.

Thank you to all those individuals who volunteer their time, who offer their aircraft and who donate funds to make this experience possible for so many.

We've kicked off our 30th year with our first fly day in Ft. Lauderdale on January 28th where we flew 70 families! Please see our calendar of upcoming events below. I hope to see you at an event soon.

Also, mark your calendars for September 16, 2023 for our 30th Anniversary Celebration at the Frontiers of Flight Museum! More details to follow.

With much appreciation,
April Culver
CEO/ Executive Director
2023 Fly Day Updates

We have added TWO new dates and made an update to Spokane. Please take note below:

April 1st – Mesquite, TX
April 22nd- Ft. Worth, TX
April 29th- Chattanooga, TN
May 20th, Sonoma County, CA
June 24th – Spokane, WA (NEW DATE)
Sept 9th- Kansas City, MO

Hope to see you there!
Recap from Fort Lauderdale!
Thank you Pilot, Allie Dudgeon!
Thank you Rotary Club!
Thank you Rotary Club of Fort Lauderdale for your continued support and partnership to make these events so special for our families and Copilots! ❤️

The Fort Lauderdale fly day has tremendous community support. Watch below as Dan Rizzi, Fly Day Chairman and Rotarian, talks about what this event means to so many.
Challenge Air Welcomes Special Guests!

The Gina Rose Montalto Memorial Foundation was created to keep Gina’s light shining by helping others.

Tony Montalto and his wife Jennifer spoke at the Ft Lauderdale fly day event in January.

"Sadly, Gina was one of the 17 victims in the 2018 Parkland school massacre. She was a kind soul and a wonderful and caring daughter. 

Our foundation was founded to help keep Gina’s memory alive by helping others achieve their dreams. 

For our family there are few dreams that equal the joy of flying. It is fantastic to see all of you gather to share the gift of flight with these kids and their families.

I have been a professional pilot for over 30 years and early on I learned that aviation community loved to help others. The Challenge Air for Kids and Friends program is clearly part of that legacy. The kindness demonstrated here by Banyan Air and all the volunteers 
is a reminder that there are many great people willing to show up and give of themselves. 

For a family that has seen tragedy such as ours, it is truly uplifting to be part of the team working together to make sure the participants of today’s events have a wonderful time.
Gina loved to help children of all abilities as demonstrated through her time as a volunteer at the Friendship Journey in Coral Springs. 

Gina also loved flying. That is what first drew many of us pilots to the skies and we always welcome the chance to share our love of aviation." - Tony Montalto

Thank you Tony, Jennifer and the Gina Rose Montalto Memorial Foundation for sharing your time and contributions in support of the Challenge Air community.

Charity Clay Shooting Tournament

Join us on March 22nd for a charity event benefiting Challenge Air's Ft. Worth Fly Day at Defender Outdoor Clay Sports Ranch in Ft. Worth Texas.

There will be 4 person shooting teams, 100 sporting clays course set for all levels. Bring your own shotgun, ammo and eye/ear
protection. Chance to win firearms, raffles and awards. Dinner and awards followed by a live country concert.

For more information on sponsorship opportunities, please contact
Beth Gatlin at 682-224-4001 or
30th Anniversary Gala... NEW DATE!

Save The Date for the 30th Anniversary Gala on September 16th at the Frontiers of Flight Museum. 

Mark your calendars and be on the lookout for more information to follow.  
Meet n' Greet in Spokane!

On February 2, 2023, the Spokane Lions Club and the Historic Flight Foundation hosted a Meet n' Greet at the museum.
Over 30 people came together to learn more about the mission of Challenge Air and how they can help more kids from the Spokane area with special needs enjoy the experience of flight! Thank you for supporting the Spokane Area Fly Day!!!
Happy Valentines Day
from Harley!
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