New group takes flight at Greene County Airport

Airport Restaurant set to reopen soon 

The Greene County Airport is home to several aviation opportunities, and it just welcomed one more this spring.

According to a press release issued by the Greene County Commissioners, the Pittsburgh Soaring Association recently became the newest tenant at the Greene County Airport. Mike Belding, Greene County Commissioner, expressed excitement for the new addition.

“The aviation community thought it would be a good fit,” Belding said. “There’s an opportunity for younger pilots to fly … and it brings diversity to our airfield community and aviation enthusiasts that are going to visit the airfield.”

As stated in the press release, the Pittsburgh Soaring Association has been flying gliders since March 1964. The addition of the 40 member group will both increase aviation activity and provide more educational opportunities for younger generations.

Belding is not the only one excited to welcome the new group. Other organizations, such as the Support Our Aviation Resources (S.O.A.R.), have also expressed positivity towards the news. 

“We’ve been friends with the Pittsburgh Soaring Society for a long time,” said Richard Judy,  Chairman of the S.O.A.R. Board of Greene County. “Having them come to Greene County is not only beneficial for them because they’ll have more open areas and a lot bigger facility to deal with but it’s also a boom for Greene County because there’ll be an increase of activity at the airport.”

The Pittsburgh Soaring Association’s offerings – defined in the press release as “educational opportunities, orientation flights, flight instruction and solo student supervision” –  also align with the mission of S.O.A.R. 

Judy defined S.O.A.R.’s mission as “protecting the airports and the aviation careers within those airports and also inspiring that next generation of young people to come out and consider a career in aviation.”

In addition to S.O.A.R. and the Pittsburgh Soaring Association, the Greene County Airport is also home to the Greene County Flying Club and the Airport Restaurant which is temporarily closed due to a fire.

Even though the restaurant fire happened a year to date on March 24, Belding said complications have prolonged the reconstruction and the restaurant will not be reopened for at least another 6 weeks.

“It has been an extremely painful process to get through. I think the 24th of this month marks one year since the fire and everything that could have gone wrong in that project has,” Belding said. “Hopefully, six weeks or so we should be up and running and it will be a brand new facility because that’s how extensive the work needs to be to get it back up to the codes.”

Despite the prolonged reopening of the Airport Restaurant, Belding said the community can expect an expansion to the previous restaurant including a new outdoor dining area. 

In the meantime, Greene County’s aviation organizations plan to offer aviation opportunities for community members. Upcoming events include S.O.A.R.’s Aviation Days in August. 

“The limits are endless for anybody who wants to pursue a career in aviation and I hope that they’ll take the time to come out to the Aviation Days event,” Judy said.