Sample letter to Councillors
Town of Rocky Mountain House Councillors
Clearwater County Councillors
My name is Kyle Petryshen. I am the owner of Vertical Xtreme Fuels (formerly named K2 Fuels) located at CYRM airport. I also own a number of other successful small business corporations, also I am currently the president of Alberta General Aviation, an online aviation group. I am passionate about all things aviation and have extensive experience as a private pilot who flies around the world.
Because of my background in both business and aviation, I feel compelled to express my concerns over this week’s suspension of CYRM airport manager, Mr. Ken Fowler. I predict that unless this decision is reversed, it will have a negative impact on the future direction of the airport, aviation community and consequently a negative effect on the communities and businesses in and around Rocky Mountain House. Certainly businesses such as mine that are directly associated with the welfare of this airport will be impacted.
Let me explain why I foresee a less than desirable outcome for Rocky Mountain House, the aviation community and the region should Mr. Fowler’s position remain suspended.
1. The Rocky Mountain House airport is one of the most vibrant and diverse small general aviation airports in both Canada and the United States. I say that with confidence backed by my own extensive experience flying in and out of multiple North American airports. Numerous thriving aviation communities come to use this airport, many even calling it their home base. Why? I believe that Mr. Fowler’s vision and hard work have much to do with the high regard that pilots have for CYRM.
2. CYRM is likely the most active aerobatic airport on this continent. It is known throughout the world as a world class aerobatic facility as well as a friendly community that welcomes aerobatic enthusiasts. As such it attracts pilots as they pass through, stay over for a visit, or fly in for a competition. An example of this was the competition held here last week. Pilots from multiple provinces flew in for the competition, and we had one competitor from a nation half way around the world. This pilot came all that way to fly in our local competition! When we add to that the numerous spectators that flew here from hundreds, even thousands of kilometers away, we have a lot of people providing business income not only for the airport but for the town as well. Competitions like these do not just happen. They require people with the organizational ability, promotional know how, and extensive contacts with aviation communities, not to mention the social skills that make pilots want to come to our airport. Ken Fowlers management creates an environment conducive to allowing events like this happen.
3. CYRM is also home to a world class airshow. Each time it is held, it attracts some of the best airshow performers in the world. Included are both military and civilian shows. The airport has even become home to several of these world class airshow performers. The airshow is very well attended by citizens of the Town of Rocky Mountain House and the surrounding communities. Again, Mr. Fowler’s years of hard work have made this possible.
4. CYRM is also home to an excellent group of fire bombers and fire fighters, this group would not feel so at home at CYRM were it not for the easy to work in environment at the airport.
5. Due to the excellent social, business, and psychologicalclimate fostered at the airport numerous businesses frequently choose to conduct their operations out of CYRM. Both civilian companies and military operations do this throughout the year. Just this summer we had the Canadian Forces Snowbirds choose to make CYRM a stopover due to the wonderful hospitality at the airport. This happened largely because Ken and Wendy Fowler, their son, Kyle Fowler, and some volunteers went out of their way to provide for the Snowbirds, taking care of their needs and special requirements as military operators. Same with the military C130 Hercules that chose to come to CYRM earlier this month.
As the fuel vender at the airport, I am so thankful for the military and many other companies that choose to come to CYRM. They fill up while passing through or stay for longer durations while conducting business in the area. Despite the impact that the Covid 19 crisis has had on aviation this year, there have been numerous examples of all types of operations taking place at the airport – civilian, commercial and military.
6. I cannot emphasis enough how much my business is connected to the diversity, openness, and ease of use the CYRM airport community provides. Nor can I over emphasize how much I think that the popularity and success of the airport is directly related to Mr. Fowler. His management and promotion draw many to it. Much of that promotion is extracurricular – outside of his regular paid duties but not outside of his love and passion for aviation. The many extracurricular activities he promotes are what make the airport vibrant and successful; they also help make my business a success.
7. This summer, had Covid 19 had not interfered, CYRM would have been host to a large Search and Rescue training exercise arranged largely through the efforts and connections of Mr. Fowler. That single event alone could have generated fuel sales for my business in hundreds of thousands of dollars not to mention the additional revenue that would have benefitted other businesses in the community. In addition Rocky Mountain House would have had the airshow this year, an event that I am sure brings many thousands of dollars of revenue into the community. This was another blow to my business and the community. – I feel Ken Fowlers job as the airport manager and the airshow are connected, if his job being airport manager goes away I feel the airshow with go away permanently. This would occur because of the extensive volunteer network required to plan such an event, a volunteer network that is largely composed of friends and associates of Ken fowler.
8. This summer I had a large STOL (Short Take Off and Landing) event planned for the airport. This event was Covid postponed to next year, but if it were not for the airport’s ease of use, it would never have been an option. The event was to bring in many pilots from different areas, some from as far away as Texas and Australia.
This is only a short list of the many wonderful attributes and events the airport has been able to provide because it has had a visionary manager with a passion for aviation. I will say while I do not always agree with every decision Mr. Fowler makes I have been generally in agreement with the direction he has taken the airport. I do not like the direction this decision to suspend Mr. Fowler is going, nor do I like the spirit in which it has been made.
I do not have to agree with everything that happens in the community, but as a business owner in the community and user of the airport my opinion is this; suspending Mr. Fowler is the wrong decision for the future viability of the airport, the businesses in and around it, regular aviation users, and the community surrounding the airport in general.
President Vertical Xtreme Fuels
Alberta General Aviation , President
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