Behind the Scenes @ MSP – February 21, 2020


Brianne Forman Kroupa

The MN 99s extend a huge (and distant) congratulations. As you may know, Brianne and Bob moved out east this winter (and got married!!)  Brianne enrolled in Dispatch school and recently passed her Dispatch test! This is a huge accomplishment, which she worked very hard for. There have been lots of twist and turns in her journey. Throughout all of it she has remained positive and excited. We hope you are able to find a job and put that new certificate to use. We are super happy for you, Brianne, and very proud. We also wish you many open doors in your aviation journey.

Congratulations, Brenda!

The Minnesota 99s extend a hearty congratulations to Brenda Peick! Brenda passed her Private check ride today in a Cessna 150.  Well done, Brenda!  We are so proud of you!

FAA Safety Team Seminar at KFCM starring Joelle Peterson!

“Go There Part II — One Airplane, Two Neighbors, Thirty Five National Parks”

CFI Joelle Peterson, presenting
Saturday, February 1, 2020
Eden Prairie, MN 55347

He was a retired career pilot with a bucket list: to see all of the National Parks. She had just finished retracing the Alaskan routes flown by her grandfather in the early 1960s and was looking to further her aeronautical experience. Together, Florida neighbors Dick and Joelle spent a summer flying in a Bonanza to realize their goals. Please join as Joelle Petersen, a CFI who has taught in Alaska, Minnesota, and Florida tells her story of the adventures, aeronautical learnings, and friendship these two neighbors shared along the way. (posted Jan. 26, 2020)

Congratulations, Captain Aura!

The Minnesota 99s extend a hearty congratulations to Aura Austin! Aura attended CAE in Dallas from December 9-23 and obtained her PIC type rating in the Citation II (CE-500 series)!  Aura received a scholarship for SIC from the Minnesota Business Aviation Association but paid for the extra upgrade training for PIC. She was sick for nine days of the training but persevered and completed her training.  The picture above shows Aura after hearing “Congratulations, Captain!” from her instructor. Well done, Aura!  We are so very proud of you. It seems like there is no limit to what you can do!

AOPA has many scholarships for various kinds of training!

AOPA members have access to a wide array of benefits, including flight training scholarship awards. Made possible through donations to the AOPA Foundation, these awards can help members reach their aviation goals.  To receive priority consideration, scholarship applications must be received by Sunday, March 1, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. (EDT). The final deadline for scholarship applications is Sunday, March 15, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. (EDT).

  • AOPA High School Flight Training Scholarships: Thanks to the generosity of the Ray Foundation, 80 exceptional high school students, ages 15 to 18, each will receive a $10,000 flight training scholarship to pursue a private, sport, or recreational pilot certificate. This scholarship program is a component of the AOPA You Can Fly program, a collection of initiatives working to building a larger, more vibrant pilot community.
  • AOPA Teacher Flight Training Scholarships: As part of the AOPA You Can Fly program and thanks to the generosity of the Ray Foundation, up to 20 teachers will be awarded flight training scholarships of $10,000 each to pursue a private, sport or recreational pilot certificate.
  • AOPA Primary Flight Training Scholarships: Current AOPA members who are at least 16 years of age are eligible to apply for a flight training scholarship of $2,500 to $7,500, to be applied to training for a private pilot, sport pilot, or recreational pilot certificate.
  • AOPA Advanced Flight Training Scholarships: Current paid AOPA members with aviation career aspirations are encouraged to apply for an advanced flight training scholarship, ranging from $3,000 to $10,000, to pursue one of the following ratings or certificates:
  • Instrument ratings include MEI (Multi-Engine – Instructor), CFII (Certificated Flight Instructor – Instrument), and CFI (Certificated Flight Instructor).

Please visit for more information.

Behind the Scenes Tour of MSP!

Rick King, the new Chair of MAC, has organized a behind-the-scenes tour of MSP specifically for our group.
When: Friday, February 21, 2020 – 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
RSVP: Provide the required information by Thursday, February 13, at this link:
Where to meet: MAC General Office | 6040 S 28th Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55450 | (612) 726-8100 (28th Avenue and Hwy 62). We will take a bus for the tour.

Winter blues?  Stay connected with pilot friends during the cold months…

Check out weekly Saturday 9:00 seminars at Modern Avionics, Flying Cloud Airport…or join the AOPA Rusty Pilot seminar at Thunderbird Aviation on Saturday, January 18, 9:00-12:00 noon. Hope to see you this winter!

December Holiday Meeting and Potluck – Great Time!

On December 14, we capped off a fantastic year with our business meeting and holiday potluck at Lynx FBO, Anoka Airport. We shared good food and great conversation on flying milestones, successes and challenges. We shared ideas for aviation activities and educational events to pursue in 2020. Jan Moll won the award for Most Events Attended. Ellen Quist won the award for Most MN Airports Landed. Thanks everyone, for a wonderful year!  See you in 2020.


Scholarship Application Time!   Here’s the scoop on scholarship application deadlines…
  • Fly Now Awards, offered by The International 99s for student pilots have an October 1 deadline. Click here for details.
  • Amelia Earhart Awards, offered by The International 99s for advanced ratings and training have a January 1 deadline. Click here for details.
  • Minnesota Chapter private pilot, advanced rating and currency scholarship details are found by clicking the Scholarships tab above. Application deadline is December 31.
  • Richard J. Santori Memorial Scholarship, administered by the Chicago 99s Chapter has a March 1 deadline. Click here for details.
Tree of Hope 2019 Sets Donation Records – December 7, 2019

Ten members of our chapter volunteered for the Tree of Hope event which celebrated its 30th year in bringing toys to children hospitalized during the holidays. Record toy donations were received this year.  Deliveries were made to 42 hospitals, all Minnesota Ronald McDonald houses, several women’s shelters and an orphanage. Our chapter volunteers worked with Girl Scouts, EAA members and others to tag, sort and bag the toys for delivery. Awesome job by everyone – thank you!



 Congratulations to Aura Austin!

Aura Austin earned her type rating in a Beech Jet, another major accomplishment in her aviation journey. She works hard and is attaining her flying dreams and goals. Aura also instructs full time at Mankato State University. Well done Aura!


Congratulations to Andrea Fox!

Andrea Fox passed her Private Pilot check ride on October 29, 2019.  She worked very hard and trained well to achieve this tremendous milestone. A huge congratulations to Andrea!  We wish you many happy years of flying. Way to go Andrea!


We know how to celebrate!  99s 90th Birthday – Minnesota 99s 70th Birthday

We had a great 90th birthday celebration for The 99s on Saturday, November 2, starting at Modern Avionics, Flying Cloud Airport, with an excellent presentation by Joelle Petersen and an overview of The 99s by Cheryl Daml. We enjoyed lunch afterward at Green Mill which included delicious birthday cake. This year we also celebrate the 70th birthday of our Minnesota Chapter, which was chartered in 1949. A very Happy Birthday to our Minnesota Chapter and The 99s!


Great Tour! MSP Flight Standards District Office (FSDO)

We enjoyed an informative tour of the MSP FSDO on October 21. Front: Cheryl Daml, Jan Moll – Back: Debs Bobka, Patti Sandusky, Brenda Peick, Deb Thompson, Jan Trover, Monika Bell, Joelle Petersen. Not pictured: Laura Hermann

Amazing!  National Weather Service Tour with Joe Calderone

Special thanks to Joe Calderone of the National Weather Service in Chanhassen for the fascinating September 28 presentation and facility tour with its weather measuring instruments. We gained new knowledge of the NWS and its great work to deliver forecast information to the public and specialized forecasts to the aviation community. We even got to hold the light-weight data collection apparatus sent up twice daily in weather balloons launched from their facility – very cool!


Girls in Aviation Day 2019 – Super Event, Warm Hangar!

We had many enthusiastic visitors to our MN 99s booth at GIAD on Saturday, September 21, Flying Cloud Airport. Everyone LOVED getting selfies taken next to our stand-up Amelia Earhart and our new cardboard airplane. Almost 200 attendees entered our contest to win a collectible Lego Friends airplane. Thanks to Patti Sandusky for donating the Lego Friends plane; it was hugely popular and a big draw to our booth. Thanks to our volunteers who worked the booth in a warm, muggy hangar! – Aura Austin, Carol Bergquist, Cheryl Daml, Kate McDonald, Brenda Peick, Mikaela Sandager, Robyn Stoller, Deb Thompson and Emily Wishard.  Great job everyone!


Pine River Compass Rose featured in Echo Journal article

On August 9, MN 99s volunteers completed a beautiful compass rose at the Pine River Airport. The Pine River Echo Journal published a great article with photos highlighting the work of our volunteers and the mission and work of The 99s. Check it out! 

Ellen Quist gets her commercial pilot license!

Congratulations to Ellen Quist on earning her commercial pilot license on September 4. Ellen has worked hard and moved quickly to gain her private pilot and instrument ratings and now has her commercial pilot license too!  We wish her continued success as she pursues her aviation dreams. Awesome job Ellen!


Congratulations to Carmen Kivisto!

Carmen passed her commercial check ride on Monday, August 5. Carmen trained well and has achieved a major milestone in her flight training journey. Congratulations Carmen, on becoming a commercial pilot. Best wishes as you continue to follow your aviation dreams!


Pine River gets a New Compass Rose

A superb compass rose was completed by MN 99s members on Friday, August 9. What a great job! Thanks to the crew members who included Trudi Amundson, Cheryl Daml, Tracy Davenport, Brianne Forman and Patti Sandusky.


Outstanding Compass Rose at Hutchinson

On Friday, August 2, MN 99s completed a beautiful compass rose at the Hutchinson airport.  Special thanks to the great crew for their time and effort! The team included Majel Baker, Cheryl Daml, Tracy Davenport, Elaine Morrow, Teegan Palmer (Cheryl’s niece), Patti Sandusky and Deb Thompson.


Tremendous Experience!  The International 99s Conference – Dayton, OH

Eleven members of our chapter attended The International 99s conference in Dayton, OH, July 15-21. We helped staff the registration booth all week while attending seminars and tours including at the National Museum of the Air Force and more. Thanks to those who attended and helped make the conference a success: Majel Baker, Cheryl Daml, Tracy Davenport, Chris Kocinski, Kate McDonald, Carmen Kivisto, Jan Moll, Elaine Morrow, Patti Sandusky, Robyn Stoller and Deb Thompson.


Mountain Flying on your Honeymoon?  Brenda Peick says Absolutely!

Brenda and her husband decided to visit Banff, Alberta, Canada for their honeymoon in June. When Brenda saw the gorgeous mountains, she decided it would be great to go mountain flying. She checked The 99s directory online and contacted the Calgary 99s treasurer and vice chair who directed Brenda to Sarah at the Calgary Flying Club. It all worked out; Brenda was able to fly on the last day of their honeymoon trip. She brought her husband along (his first time flying with her) and they experienced mountain flying with all of the odd weather patterns that go with it.  Brenda is very excited to learn more and fly in as many new areas as possible. She also says “I am so glad that I belong to The 99s!” Thank you Brenda for sharing this great story with us! We are glad you had a fantastic new experience in mountain flying!


Mary Jane Rice, Charter MN 99s member, passed away July 17 in Willmar, MN at age 99.

She earned her private pilot certificate in 1940 and became one of the first women in Minnesota to hold a commercial pilot certificate. She and her husband, John, founded Willmar Air Service, Inc. Together they managed the airport and operated their business with Mary Jane ultimately logging 63 years in the office. Mary Jane earned the first “Mrs. Aviation” title from the Minnesota Aviation Trades Association.  Later she was inducted into the Minnesota Aviation Hall of Fame. She joined the ranks of Amelia Earhart and the Wright brothers with an induction into the International Forest of Friendship, a living memorial to the world of aviation in Atchison, KS. Mary Jane will be remembered for her pioneering nature, deep curiosity and keen interest in the world around her. The Minnesota 99s extends our deepest sympathy to her family and friends.

Aitkin Fly-In, Drive-In Wild Rice Pancake Breakfast on June 30

Thanks to chapter members who volunteered at our booth and represented our chapter so well – Carol Bergquist, Cheryl Daml, Brianne Forman, Laura Herrmann, Ellen Quist and Emily Wishard.


Congratulations to Ellen Quist on her Instrument Rating!

She passed with flying colors on June 12.  All best wishes for continued success in her aviation journey. Awesome job Ellen!

Mankato Air Spectacular – MN 99s Shine as Volunteers

On June 15-16, MN 99s volunteered for a variety of activities to help make the event a success. Thanks everyone, for your time and hard work – great job!


Beautiful Maple Lake compass rose!

The ‘one-day wonder team’ completed this gorgeous new compass rose at the Maple Lake Airport on Friday, May 31. A huge THANK YOU to the team of Jeff Barber, Cheryl Daml, Tracy Davenport, Sheila Gruba, Elaine Morrow, Patti and Dick Sandusky, Jaye Sela and Deb Thompson. This one is over-the-top gorgeous!


Deb Bobka first solo flight in Cessna 150 at Fleming Field – May 30!  Awesome job Deb!


Congratulations to Brenda Peick on her first solo flight!

Brenda Peick completed her first solo May 11, 2019, at Fleming Field in South St. Paul (KSGS). Great job Brenda…a huge congratulations and best wishes as you continue your flight training. Watch her nail one of her solo landings here.

Wow!  Check out the Brainerd Air Marking – May 10, 2019

A huge thank you to Trudi Amundson, Carol Bergquist, Cheryl Daml, Tracy Davenport, Laura Herrmann and Patti Sandusky for completing the Brainerd Air Marking May 10.  Looks fantastic!


Congratulations to Brianne Forman!

Brianne successfully completed her private pilot check ride at Anoka Airport on Friday, April 19.  This is an especially great accomplishment having trained through a very long and cold Minnesota winter.  A huge congratulations to Brianne!  We wish her continued success in pursuing her aviation dreams.  Awesome job!


MSP Tower Tour – April 4, 2019

Seeing ATC in action is amazing. We had an excellent tour of both the MSP TRACON (Terminal Radar Control Facility) and tower. We also learned about the history of MSP airport, formerly ‘Speedway Field’, an automobile race track in the early 20th century. Today MSP is the 17th busiest U.S. airport, and in 2018, set a new passenger record of over 38 million.


2019 Chapter Scholarship Winner Announced

Emily Wishard has been awarded the 2019 chapter scholarship for course work toward her private pilot certificate. Congratulations Emily! We wish you great success in your private pilot flight training. You’ve got this covered!  Blue Skies and Tail Winds always…


Read Aura Austin’s blog – “Oh No, Not Turbulence!”

We are incredibly proud of Aura Austin who’s worked as a ferry pilot and currently is a flight instructor in Mankato. Check out her great blog on ways to overcome a fear of turbulence. Also read the blog on her first ferry flight through Mexico to deliver a Cessna 152 to a flight school in El Salvador. Click here to read her ferry flight blog.