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Aviation enthusiasts enjoy last day of Chopper Madness

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ABILENE, Texas - The Radio Control Society of Abilene was at Sea Bee Park on Sunday taking part in Chopper Madness. Local hobbyists flew their aircraft at the last day of the event.

The RC Society's Chopper Madness event started about 20 years ago. The club safety officer, James Johnson, said it started with friends just having a good time and then it grew.

"Our academy is focusing now on the STEM program they have out," Johnson said. "You got your science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, and so we like to do this to invite the public to see what we're doing."

The society's web master, Luis Malave, said people can buy a kit and build their own helicopter.

The total cost can average between $3,000 to $4,000.

This year they tried something different with drones.

"We also did FPV flying, which stands for first person view with the drone," Malave said. "We actually had drone racing here at the field where you actually wear goggles and it gives you that actual experience of flying in the cockpit."

Malave said his background in the U.S. Air Force played a big role in his passion for flying.

"I'm a techy, and I just love electronics aviation, anything that flies," Malave said. "I'm actually a retired Air Force so my previous career was the Air Force, and I actually got to fly on some of the aircraft and I just love flying."

The RC Society accepts new members, and they welcome people to join them at Sea Bee Park. Malave and Johnson said that members are usually flying at the park on the weekends. They said they have experienced members who can train those who want to learn.

They have more information on how to become a member on their website.

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