Spread Your Wings is a project the goal of which is the positive, grass roots promotion of the sport of hang gliding. On the more enthusiastic side, you might even call it a mild, underground, guerrilla advertising campaign meant to increase the public awareness of the sport of hang gliding.
As years have gone by the automatic, sensationalistic attention of the media to our sport has faded. As a result, our presence in the mind of the public has faded as well. This has surely contributed to the lower numbers of participating hang glider pilots. All those potential hang glider pilots out there can’t develop any interest if they are unaware of, or have no clear path toward learning, the sport. And that’s where Spread Your Wings comes in.
To bring our amazing and exciting sport back into the public eye, some effort is needed to make hang gliding once again visible, in a positive way, to the general public. And while many hang gliding sites are fairly remote from public view, unlike many other action sports, it is very possible to bring hang gliding to places where the public can see it, touch it, and maybe then - even get involved.
The Original Concept involved the bold idea of flying from an established hang gliding site, going XC (some small or medium distance) and landing one or more hang glider(s) in a safe, and otherwise very suitable, public area. Such a public LZ would be scouted before hand and, ideally, a small ground/retrieval crew would be there with a wind indicator or two set up. And *MAYBE* someone from the local press could be alerted and on hand to witness a landing at the end of an XC hang gliding flight!? If all went well, such a member of the press would be treated to an interview with a advance skilled, well spoken, enthusiastic hang glider pilot.
And if, 2-3 or 5-6 pilots all made it to the same location? Well, it would be like a small hang gliding version of a (silent) biker rally. Surely this kind of event would capture the eye, interest, and imagination of the public.
However, there can be a few obstacles to this particular idea. Yet, one may wonder, how many other ways are there which might be used, by the average ordinary hang glider pilot, or local club, to promote our sport? So that question was asked, with the hope that the idea of Spread Your Wings just might . . . take-off!
Here you will find a number of those ideas, as intended to Spread Your Wings. And as they come in, Accounts of Actual Efforts to Spread Your Wings will also be posted. So, come back often and check on what’s being done to Spread Your Wings. And what would be even BETTER - is if you got off your fat butt and made your own efforts to Spread Your Wings! Remember to send us any new ideas as well as any small, medium, or large scale efforts you and/or your buddies have actually accomplished in an effort to Spread Your Wings. Let’s do it!