FAVIA 225 confirms Meg Skelton as a guest speaker
Forwarding the Love of Competitive Ballooning
The rows of golden corn tassels in the fields of Lancaster, PA, were the standard for straight and level flight when Meg learned to fly. She was just 14. Sharing one of her earliest experiences, Meg said, “I flew a lot with my Mom and Dad. We would always fly two balloons off of one chase truck, so you had to land where the other balloon did.” That was the beginning of her flying with a purpose. That was the beginning of her fierce love of competitive ballooning.
Meg earned her commercial license at age 18, and flew for a winter in Phoenix for a ride operator there, in addition to flying other commercial advertising contracts. She flew over 500 hours before life happened in her mid 20s, when she moved to Boston for work. For the next two decades, she kept current flying a few times each year, but missed the excitement of competition. In 2012, longing to get back in the game, she went to the World Championship in Battle Creek as an observer, becoming fascinated with the new opportunities (and challenges) of electronics. Afterwards, she came home to Castle Rock, Colorado, and with the support of several local pilots, spearheaded the formation of a Colorado Competitive Ballooning group. In just over a year, it went from 1 HACD cardholders to 12, and 3 pilots from Colorado competed in the 2014 National Championship in Longview. Two other Colorado women have competed in the Women’s’ World Championships in addition to herself. “I love having people develop their piloting skills, and competitive ballooning is an avenue for that,” she says. The intention on her office wall reads: “To support the love and growth of competitive ballooning.”
In 2013 she purchased her first personal balloon: Maharani, a dragon that wraps around her Lindstrand 60X racer. “She is the most beautiful thing I have ever created,” Meg is moved to share, and she flies Maharani every chance she gets. Self acclaimed as an intense, focused and committed pilot, she has a new passion for team flying.
Meg is tenacious and persistent, working a target until she comes as close as she can. And she is a continual learner, always looking for what works and what doesn’t, and implementing what she learns. Meg has competed in the last 2 Women’s’ World Championships on the US team.
With her passion and drive, Meg is excited to bring her love of competitive ballooning to this years BFA Conference. Afterwards, look for her to attack the scoreboard every chance she gets. The game is definitely ON! And nothing would make her happier than if YOU would join her on the competitive launch field.