Application for Chapter status was initiated
and received. However it appears the members did
not file for incorporation until 1966.
The Fifties and Fred Weick
Fred Weick, one of the United States earliest aviation pioneers, was a lifetime member of EAA and a member of Chapter 99 until he passed away in 1993. In the late fifties Fred Weick started the Piper Development Center in Vero Beach (the winter home of the Piper family).
In the early sixties Fred Weick started the development of the Piper Cherokee. At that time the manufacturing facility was started in Vero Beach to build the Cherokee. This was an exciting
time that brought members, a 1965 J-3 Piper Cub and a Flying
Club. The Chapter reorganized with Landis K. and Bill K. being part of
the driving force. Incorporation was filed on 11/30/66. In those years, Chapter 99 had about 20 members.
Interest in the Chapter waned, some diehards
Fred Weick passed away in 1993. With the help of the Weick family, the Chapter donated more than 61 items, among them Fred´s original drafting instruments, his flight bag, books, countless photographs, awards, medals and certificates to the Air Museum at Lakeland, FL. The exhibit was on display until 2009, when it was returned to Vero Beach.
Chapter 99 revived with renting a hangar and
moving into a permanent home and has been increasingly
active since then. To read the details about the time starting 1966 until 2003 you can download Landis´ article in the Sport Aviation Magazine from Feb. 2003, "New Beginning Again".
Aviation Day, held by the Vero Beach Airport since 1985, was a popular event among aviators and residents. In 2003, Chapter 99 took on the event, attracting between 3,000 and 4,000 visitors every year. Photos
Membership had grown to about 60 members. On Feb. 20, 2007, Chapter 99 received a proclamation from the City Council of Vero Beach for promoting and supporting aviation, vounteering to educate Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, encouraging community awareness of aviation, and supporting the Vero Beach Municipal Airport.
Due to liability reasons, Chapter 99 decided not to offer Young Eagles Flights any more as an organization. Instead, the event was modified into a "Learn To Fly Saturday", offering exposure to aviation not limited only to the youngsters, but to aviation enthusiasts of all ages. Membership count: 72
Chapter 99 donated the Fred Weick memorabilia, which has been in the care of the chapter since 2009, to the Piper Museum in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania. Representatives of the museum were thrilled at being given the opportunity to recognize Fred Weick’s important contributions to general aviation, and to Piper Aircraft.
Vero Beach Air Show was organized and held by the three local Exchange Clubs. A second big Air Show was lined up for May 2014 right after the show in October. Since Vero Beach Airport can only support one big aviation event per year, Chapter 99 had no other choice than cancelling Aviation Day 2014. Membership count: 35.
Chapter 99 organized Aviation Day 2015 and successfully combined the event with a visit of EAA´s B-17. Under new leadership, the Chapter eased back into offering Young Eagles Flights.