Outlook for Saturday #Launch

Greg Smith

For the first time since February, we have a rocket launch scheduled tomorrow, Saturday, July 11, at Dodds Park in Champaign.

Setup will begin at 12:00 noon, probably in the south half of the soccer field parking lots. Flying can continue until sunset at 8:30 PM. Our waiver allows flying motors through "H" class up to 4,000' MSL (about 3,250' from ground level).

The forecast is good (except for one little thing!):


Saturday - A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 3pm. Mostly sunny, with a high near 87. Light west wind increasing to 5 to 9 mph in the morning.


We'll have to be on the lookout for those thunderstorms, but it sounds like a good day for flying, at least for as long as it stays dry. I will post the final decision about the launch here shortly after 11:00 AM tomorrow. You can call me after that time at 217-840-1678 for an update.

Our next launch will be Saturday, July 25 at Dodds Park.

Please note that we will be enforcing our new physical distancing and masking requirements starting with this launch. We're brand new at doing things this way, so please be patient with us. Here are the new rules again:


Rules for CIA launches at Dodds Park

These rules are based on guidelines from the Park District as well as our own common sense. Since we haven't done this before we may need to adjust them during the course of the launch as we see how well they work.

- If you don't feel well, stay home.

- Don't park in adjacent spaces.

- Set up your prep area at a reasonable distance from others.

- If you want to participate in the launch, a mask must be worn to cover both your nose and mouth whenever you cannot maintain a safe distance from other participants. No exceptions to masks. Effectively, this means that masks must be worn when you are not at your own setup area or your car, or recovering a rocket in the field far from other people.

- Everyone should bring their own hand sanitizer and use it regularly. Especially after you have been in contact with the pads or wadding bucket that others will also be using.

- Bring a scoop or cup or something to get wadding out of the bucket, rather than using your hands.

- Take your trash out of the park with you when you leave. Bring a trash bag you can use for your trash.

- We will have the pads spaced out in pods, with possibly 2 pads per pod. Only one person at a pod at a time. The exception to this is that members of a family can go to the pad together.

- One LCO or specific sanitizing between a couple of LCOs.

- No remote launch button (sorry kids).

- Do not hover or loiter at the LCO table, unless you are the LCO.

- Be willing to inform visitors and guests about these safeguards. We all need to help keep everyone safe. We'll need everyone to do their part, including letting new people know what they should do.

- We will be collecting contact information of all participants and spectators. Check in with the LCO when you arrive. This is so that if someone present happens to be infected their past contacts can be traced.

- For set up and tear down, only one person in the trailer at a time. That person can unload/reload equipment and the rest of us can carry that equipment to and from the field. When doing so we need to wear masks and try to maintain spacing as best we can.


Greg Smith N9LHI
NAR 15881 * TRA 1974
Director of Operations, Central Illinois Aerospace
greg@... 217-840-1678