Calling All Pilots

The Kiwanis Club of Orcas Island is putting on its annual (19th annual) Paper Airplane Contest on March 7th @ 1:00 P.M. in the High School Gym.

But this year, they are adding something special.  They are asking all island Pilots (active, retired or whatever) to come to their contest and compete in a Pilot’s Paper Airplane Competition in memory of Jack Conant.  Jack was a longtime member of the club, a retired Airline Captain and an active Paper Airplane helper.   All materials and instructions will be provided.

Please join them to celebrate Jack’s life with a friendly competition.  For more information, contact George Garrels at 2814 or at the email the airport manager.

Airport Parking Project

We have started a project to rehabilitate the large parking lot north of the terminal.  This project will be completed in phases and includes reversing the flow of the parking lot.  This is a significant change that we undertook to facilitate access to the helipad through the gate at the North end of the parking lot.

Switching the orientation of an active parking lot is no simple task and we ask for your patience and help to complete this phase as quickly as possible.  Please follow the new flow (counter-clockwise) and park in the new orientation if you can find a spot.  To facilitate the subsequent construction phase, please park on the west side of the lot if at all possible (this is the side near the aircraft ramp).  Drivers should park with caution, as the parking barriers will remain in the old orientation during this phase.  If you can’t find a suitable spot in the new orientation, please choose from the following alternatives to keep the project moving forward.

For drivers parking long-term (past the end of February), please park in the lot near FedEx if possible (the lot closest to Mt Baker Rd).  For shorter term parking, drivers may still park in the old orientation if they cannot park in the new orientation.  As a last resort, if parking in the lot is not available in either orientation, short-term parkers may park in the spots directly in front of the terminal that are normally 12-hr restricted spots.  For this phase of the project, these spots will be assessed at the regular $2/day rate instead of penalty rate.

Once the majority of vehicles have been reoriented in the parking lot, the airport will work to clear and close the entire east side of the lot for rehabilitation.  Once the east side is complete and re-opened, work will begin on the west side.

Signage and posters at the airport will reflect these changes to the maximum extent practical, but if you have any questions, contact the Airport Manager, Tony Simpson at his office in the terminal, by phone at 376-5285 or by email at orcasairport@rockisland.com.  Your patience is greatly appreciated.

Parking Lot Reorientation


Annual Fly-In

Hot Off The Press!!! The Annual Fly-In will be August 7,8 and 9 this year.

Due to an anomaly in the time-space continuum, that means this year’s fly-in is NOT the same weekend as SeaFair.  So, if you’ve never been here because you love the Blue Angels…this is your chance.  Mark your calendars!


The RNAV-16 remains NOTAM’d NA (which unfortunately means “Not Authorized”).  The approach is available (here) from the FAA.  We’re working to address NAVAIR Canada’s concerns about the Missed Approach altitude and impacts to feeder fix obstruction clearance.  Whatever the ultimate solution, it will require being re-checked by flight check.  As such, it’s probably not a quick solution.


The next regular meeting of the Port of Orcas Commission is Thursday, March 12th, 2015 at 1 PM in the terminal conference room.

New and Noteworthy:

If you have airport pictures you would be willing to share, please email them to me at orcasairport@rockisland.com.