Building Confidence in Children and Youth with Special Needs

Greetings, Challenge Air for Kids & Friends community!

As we dive into the month of July, we can't help but reflect on the incredible success of our recent 3rd Annual Challenge Air Fly Day in Spokane, WA, which took place on June 24th. It was a day filled with joy, inspiration, and countless unforgettable moments for all involved.

Thanks to the unwavering support of the Historic Flight Foundation, the Spokane Central Lions Club, and numerous local businesses and individuals, we were able to come together and create a truly remarkable experience for our VIPs. Their commitment to our mission of building confidence and self-esteem in children and youth with disabilities was evident throughout the entire event.

We were fortunate to have the participation of 12 dedicated pilots who generously volunteered their time and skills to make this Fly Day a soaring success. Their expertise and passion for aviation brought smiles to the faces of 69 VIPs, who had the opportunity to experience the exhilaration of flight firsthand. The transformative impact of this experience on the lives of these children is immeasurable.

None of this would have been possible without the incredible dedication of over 80 volunteers who selflessly gave their time and energy to ensure that the day was nothing short of extraordinary. From registration and logistics to providing support and encouragement, these individuals played a vital role in making each VIP feel valued and cherished.

We are immensely grateful for the ongoing support and enthusiasm of our community, including our generous donors who make events like the Challenge Air Fly Day possible. Your contributions continue to inspire us and remind us of the power of collective action in making a positive difference in the lives of children with disabilities.

As we move forward into the summer season, let us carry the spirit of unity, compassion, and empowerment that was palpable during the Challenge Air Fly Day. Together, we can continue to create opportunities for these remarkable children to spread their wings, build confidence, and embrace their limitless potential.

Thank you all for being an integral part of our mission and for making the Challenge Air Fly Day an unforgettable event. We look forward to sharing more inspiring stories, updates, and upcoming events with you in the July newsletter.

With much appreciation,

April Culver

CEO/ Executive Director

You're Invited: Celebrating 30 Years!

Come meet one of our hero's and celebrate 30 years of empowering kids with disabilities and special needs through the gift of flight by joining us on Saturday, September 16th at The Frontiers of Flight Museum! Help us keep flying for another 30 years!

Purchase Tickets!

Can't attend? Make a difference by contributing to our silent auction. 

Table sales and sponsorships also available. 

Contact April Culver at or 214-351-3353.

Special Guest: Jason Morgan

Get ready to be inspired by the incredible story of Jason Morgan, our esteemed guest speaker at the Challenge Air Gala event.

From serving in the United States Air Force to surviving a life-changing accident, Jason's journey from paralysis to a life filled with adventure and purpose is truly remarkable.

His resilience, determination, and unwavering spirit have led him to become a best-selling author, a national spokesperson for Canine Companions, and a source of hope for children undergoing chemotherapy.

Join us as we hear Jason's story of triumph, resilience, and making a difference in the face of adversity.

Yes, I want Tickets!

Attention Pilots and Volunteers: Soar with Purpose at Our Fly Day Event!

Calling all pilots and dedicated volunteers! We need your passion, expertise, and willingness to make a difference. Join us for our upcoming Fly Day event and be a part of an extraordinary experience that uplifts the lives of children and youth with special needs. Together, we can create lasting memories and inspire the next generation to reach new heights. Sign up now to be a part of this incredible journey!

Register for an upcoming event

Get Ready to Take Flight!

We have some exciting destinations lined up for you:

📍 Sept 9th - Kansas City, MO

📍 Sept 30th - Denver, CO

📍 Oct 7th - Tulsa, OK

Register Here!

Highlights from the 2023 Spokane, WA Fly Day

We extend a special thank you to John Sessions, the incredible owner of Historic Flight Foundation, for his unwavering support in hosting the remarkable Spokane Fly Day for Challenge Air. Watch the recap below of this special event below:

Meet VIP Co-Pilot Adelaide!

"Adelaide has her memorabilia proudly displayed in her room and is still chatting about this day!"- Monica D 💙💛💙💛💙💛

"VIP Co-Pilot Addy is the best!! She’s super good at playing / singing Johnny Cash … AND, knows so much about Amelia Earhart. She’s so impressive!" - Carl Corns

"The love that these pilots have for their craft and joy in sharing it..."- Monica D

Meet Ashley Rupert:

NEW Board of Trustees Members

“Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to join Challenge Air and your mission to create meaningful experiences through flight. 

My career in aviation has offered me an opportunity to return to Dallas in 2019 after having previously been in the located in the New York / Tri state area. Graduating from Ursuline Academy Dallas, laid the fundamentals for my commitment to service. Continuing onto Northeastern University, I attained the fundamentals to build a corporate career before arriving in aviation. 

In my free time I enjoy time with my dog and you may find me on the Pickle ball court. With more than a decade of experience in aviation operations and background in service, I look forward to continue to proudly grow the mission of Challenge Air.” - Ashley Rupert

Chicken n Pickle's Give Back Night

We extend a heartfelt appreciation to Chicken n Pickle Grand Prairie for graciously hosting a remarkable "Give Back Night" event, resulting in a phenomenal $200 raised for Challenge Air for Kids and Friends.

Chicken n Pickle is an exceptional advocate for catering to the unique needs of the communities they serve, encompassing all aspects of life.

We are grateful for your generous contribution, which bolsters the mission of Challenge Air in instilling confidence and empowerment within children and youth with special needs.

Together, we can continue making a positive impact and transforming lives. Thank you for your support!

"Aviation has the power to uplift not only planes but also spirits, inspiring us to overcome challenges and reach new horizons."

- Amelia Earhart

Gratitude and Reflection: A Heartfelt Thanks for Making Our Event Soar!

"Thanks to the [Challenge Air Team] for all your efforts to continue to make this event successful. I am not sure of the final count of missions flown. However, after participating in a fair number of these fly days, the flow on the flight line was best I have seen. 


I flew 7 flights with copilots all responding differently to the experience. This is true most years, but I noted more this year because I had several copilots unable or chose not to take the yoke and were somewhat subdued during most of the flight. But in all cases at some point they realized they had accomplished something and I got a smile. 


I also want to thank you for recalibrating my own well being. Seeing some of the challenges this kids and their parents overcome everyday leaves me with a great deal of respect and admiration for these warriors. Makes you understand one’s own work or family conflicts are pretty darn petty in comparison.Thanks again and see next year!"


Lane Gormley


Home Depot Volunteers Making a Tremendous Impact at Challenge Fly Day Events

Home Depot volunteers showed dedication and community support, at the Spokane Challenge Fly Day event.

Their involvement includes providing renowned Kids Workshop kits, sparking excitement with creative projects that allow children to unleash their imaginations and experience the joy of teamwork.

Challenge Air extends a heartfelt gratitude to Home Depot for their invaluable partnership. Together, we will inspire young aviators to soar higher and leave a meaningful mark on their lives.

Thank you, Home Depot, for your commitment to future Challenge Air events nationwide.

Thank you so much for supporting the Challenge Air mission.
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