Chapter 67 sponsors two annual contests in Washington, usually held at the Ephrata Municipal Airport, KEPH. Please see the Ephrata page for more information about KEPH.
Our first annual contest Apple Cup, usually scheduled the weekend after Father's Day (see the Event Calendar for dates).
An aerobatics "camp" is scheduled several weeks to a month before Apple Cup. At camp, pilots practice in the Ephrata box the figures and sequence they plan to fly at Apple Cup, benefiting from expert coaching over a dedicated "box" radio frequency. See the Coaching and Camp page for more details.
Apple Turnover is usually scheduled for the week after Labor Day. Registration is on Thursday; early arrivals have the opportunity for a practice flight in the box on Thursday. Some pilots will arrive on Wednesday, both to mitigate the risk of inclement weather in the passes through the Cascades from western Washington and to for extra practice in the box.
Typically contest days are on Friday and Saturday, with the first two flights on Friday to preserve time on Saturday afternoon if increment weather curtails flights on Saturday.
An awards banquet on Saturday evening celebrates and recognizes the accomplishments of pilots and volunteers.
A typical "itinerary" for a participant during the week of Apple Cup or Turnover could be:
Wednesday: Fly to KEPH and practice in the box; provide box monitor support (keeping an eye on potential conflicts with other airplanes who didn't read the NOTAM) while other contestants are practicing in the box. Attend an informal get-together at an Ephrata bar and grill.
Thursday: Fly a second practice in the box; complete a "technical inspection" of your credentials (IAC membership, pilot and medical certificates) and your airplane (to include chute inspection currency); register for the contest. Attend a "welcome" pizza party sponsored by Chapter 67, usually in the Seattle Glider Council "chalet" adjacent to the Ephrata Terminal building.
Friday: Attend an early morning (usually 0700-ish) mandatory contest/safety briefing; receive volunteer assignments; assignment to a flight order for the two Friday flights. The first flight on Friday morning is the Known sequence for your category. You might fly in the first "relay" starting at about 0830, then perform as a volunteer until the lunch break. You could volunteer first, then fly. Your registration fee includes a sandwich and snacks for lunch. Snacks and beverages are available through the day. The second relay starts right after lunch (fly, then volunteer, or volunteer and then fly). Depending on the number of competitors (all five categories usually compete), flying on Friday usually concludes late in the afternoon. Sometimes winds or other weather cause an interruption in the day's flying. Friday evening, attend a "Bring Your Own Meat" grill at Acrohouse, an Ephrata home near the airport owned by two Chapter 67 members. At the dinner, use one of two grills to cook a steak (from the Ephrata Safeway) and enjoy side dishes, desserts, wine, beer, soft drinks, and conversation.
Saturday: Starts the same as Friday; if two flights per competitor were completed for all categories on Friday, only a single flight is needed on Saturday. Saturday afternoon is available in case weather delayed or prevents flights on Friday. Otherwise, everybody "pitches in" on Saturday afternoon to restore the Ephrata terminal to pre-contest condition. Some competitors will depart for home on Saturday afternoon if the weather forecast for Sunday looks unfavorable. Many pilots, family members, and volunteers attend the awards banquet on Saturday evening.
Sunday: Return home, weather permitting. On occasion, instrument meteorological conditions will force pilots to store airplanes in a hangar at Ephrata for a nominal fee, waiting for a Monday return home. Some pilots will leave their airplanes in Ephrata for a week until the weather will permit a flight home.