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Page 43
AUSTIN EXECUTIVE AIRPORT
A History of Austin's Newest General Aviation Airport
R
on
W. H
enRiksen
Chapter 2
if he'd mind taking the couple on a fifteen-
minute airplane ride.
Why not?
Scott squeezed the couple into a four-seater
Cessna 172, taxied over to runway 34 and, be-
fore anyone had a change of heart, applied full
throttle and got the airspeed up to sixty-four
knots, a bit more because of the extra weight.
When he felt the Cessna ready to lift off, he
gently eased back on the control wheel.
Once in the air, he talked reassuringly about
flying airplanes--airspeed and trim and fuel
consumption at four thousand feet--while his
passengers sat in silent ignorance. He talked
flap settings and carburetor ice and short-
field landings. By the time the threesome
found solid ground--the couple now giddy
as teddy bears and the woman in a feathery
laugh imploring Scott to sign them up for
flight lessons--Scott discovered a hidden tal-
ent he'd never considered. He'd make a darn
good flight instructor. Not long after, he gave
up piloting jumpers and became one of Bird's
Nest's first full-time flight instructors.
In those years the airport was busier than a
Texas October fair. In addition to local pilots
looking for an inexpensive place to hangar
an airplane and the Austin Parachute Center,
which drew regular crowds, Bird's Nest Air-
port was home to the University of Texas Fly-
1984. Dave Mandot and Becky Howell in their Cessna 172. Photo taken from the northeast side of the old
hangars and original flight office/pole house. Photo courtesy of Clyde Barker.