One of my mechanics recently found a really old spark plug in our spare parts that was apparently made by the “Wizard” Spark Plug Company.  He brought it to one of our aircraft meetings and presented it to me because of the “Wizard of Orlampa” title of a DVD years ago that’s for sale in our gift shop.

I immediately got the idea to create a little stand for it, which another mechanic made for me.  The spark plug combined with our mission statement, Light that Spark Within, now resides on my office desk!


A Wizard of an Idea!

Light that Spark Within refers to the potential that lies within each and everyone of us as it manifests into reality.  Kind of like the Universe coming from a Big Bang singularity.

Flight is the most profound metaphor of pushing our boundaries, reaching beyond ourselves, and freedom: not only in the world around us but also within, for we each, in our own way, can relate to reaching for sky and reaching for the stars as well as soaring in our imagination and flying in our dreams.  This will be the Fantasy of Flight future concept and product, where people self-discovery themselves for themselves through entertainment as they Light that Spark Within!  Now how cool is that!





We recently completed another Storage Facility across the street from Fantasy of Flight to compliment our first one and are excited for several reasons.  First, it will give us some well-needed breathing room and give us the ability to make room in our Maintenance Hangar for the Douglas C-47, which we recently flew over from England and left on display at the EAA Oshkosh Museum.  Second, we purchased two road-legal trolleys to be able to take Fantasy of Flight patrons over to tour them as part of our normal ticket price!

Orignal facility on the left and the new one on the right.

Each building is 20,000 square feet!

There will be an opportunity to not only shuffle some of the airplanes on display in the Fantasy of Flight hangars but also give the restoration shop some long-needed space.  For the die-hard aviation enthusiasts, they will soon get to see a lot more of the collection!

For those of you that purchased the Wizard of Orlampa DVD we sell in the gift shop, you got to see a brief glimpse of how packed the current building is with airplane parts.  You have to crawl over stuff to get around as there is very little floor space to walk.

Small glimpse of the current facility showing Lockheed 14, B-29, and B-17 fuselages!

Pallet Racking has been assembled around the perimeter of the inside and my guys have started moving airplanes over from Fantasy of Flight.  The now disassembled AT-11, that had been stored in the Maintenance Hangar, became the first tenant.  Soon we will begin thinning out the first building and filling the new building, and in a manner that will allow our patrons, and my guys, to actually get to everything!

New building with Pallet Racking around the perimeter, AT-11 in the distance, and our Gas Balloon Gondola hanging from ceiling!

Since most people in the aviation world are aware that the National Air & Space Museum has their off-site Silver Hill Storage Facility in Maryland, I’ve decided to call ours the Golden Hill Storage Facility!  Now I’ll never admit to it, but there might be a subtle innuendo there!

Golden Hill Express!

I’m not going to make any predictions as to exactly when we’ll be open for business, as there is a LOT of work to do.  Give us about three months and we’ll have a better idea.  One thing is for sure . . . when we do open for business it will be posted on my blog!



I just got the final results in from my Oshkosh sales.  While I didn’t sell as many Gee Bee Books as last year, I definitely sold more product!  Last year was the first year the book came out and I sold 420, although I did run out of books with three more days left of the Fly-In.  This year I sold 350 Gee Bee Books, as well as, 100 Audio Experience CD’s, and 120 Wizard of Orlampa DVD’s.   EAA rolled out the red carpet for me and gave me my own spot, Kermit’s Corner, in the EAA Wearhouse Merchandise building near Aeroshell Square.

kermit's corner

I introduced two showings of the Wizard of Orlampa in the EAA Museum Theater and got a great response.  When I arrived for my second showing on Thursday morning, the AV guy came out and told me it was the biggest crowd he had seen all week!  All the seats were filled with many people sitting in the aisles!  I also got a chance to read the Gee Bee Book several times at Kid Venture and gave away six Gee Bee Books as prizes.

Handing out three Gee Bee Books after reading to the crowd!

Handing out three Gee Bee Books as prizes after reading to the crowd!

On Thursday night, at the Young Eagles event, I was an auction item and my Vision Tour package including an airplane flight raised $4000!  All in all it was a great trip!



The Wizard of Orlampa DVD is now for sale in the Fantasy of Flight gift shop.  It’s 51 minutes long and begins with what we currently do at Fantasy of Flight regarding the airplane collection then slowly morphs into where Fantasy of Flight is headed in the future.

Check out a quick preview of the beginning of the show at  The site is just preliminary and we currently don’t have our online sales set up yet.  If you don’t get out to Fantasy of Flight to pick one up, check back from time to time on the website.  We just ordered some DVD’s in the European PAL type version, which will be available as well.

Currently, we are working with two different PBS outlets for show on television and will let everyone know when that might happen.


The show came about when I was approached last summer by some film people out of Orlando with the idea to create a TV show. We did about five days of filming at Fantasy of Flight that showed who we are, what we are, and where we are headed. It mainly focused on myself, the Aircraft Department and what we do with the airplanes at Fantasy of Flight. It also showed a bit of my vision of what I think we can create as well.

It has to potential to serve two purposes. First, it is at a minimum a one-hour stand-alone show. Secondly, it could be seen a a possible pilot for a “reality” series. We certainly have a lot of exciting stuff happening at Fantasy of Flight, that’s for sure. I think the production value of the aircraft collection and the facility combined with my vision for what I hope to create, someone could make for an interesting show.

The WIZARD OF ORLAMPA title was actually suggested by the production company after spending a lot of time with me discussing Fantasy of Flight and what I hoped to create with it.

Many years ago there was an article in the Orlando Sentinel about me called “The Mayor of Orlampa!” I originally coined the phrase Orlampa and actually trademarked it. It is an obvious combination of Orlando and Tampa and describes our location perfectly as we are exactly halfway between. While I am the Mayor by default because I own all the property, I am striving to become a Wizard! When you see the show you will understand the metaphor.

We premiered the “Wizard of Orlampa” for the Fantasy of Flight employees and it was a big hit. We then began sending out copies to various cable networks. There has been interest but nothing conclusive yet. We’ve had some good comments from directors and producers and have no problem easily tweaking the show in the studio to make it better. Not ever having done this before, I couldn’t tell you when we might see it on the air but if something doesn’t happen soon, I will at least start selling DVD’s of it in the Gift Shop!

I wrote the theme song for the show and had it recorded at a local Florida Studio and it sounds great!

Hope you get to see it soon!