Randy Parkin

Willi Retro

As you might already know, the Willi XC Challenge turns 20 this year. It is also the 25th year of paragliding in Golden, and 40+ years of hang gliding.

We want to celebrate!!!

So we’re inviting anyone who has flown the Willi in the past, or ever flown Golden, to attend a FREE FLIGHT RETRO PARTY on Saturday, July 30, in the Pavilion at Golden Eco-Adventure Park. The band is booked, the buffet is planned, and the dance floor is being polished. Everyone is welcome to bring their (mostly) true stories and most garish flying apparel to share with others.

We’ve scoured the records and made a list of people we think should be there. You can see the list here…

If you know someone on the list, tell them about the party. If you see a name missing, or have contact info for someone who should be notified, let us know via email to flyfar@thewillixc.com.

Tickets for the party are $25, to cover the venue, meal and band. Participants in the 2016 Willi will get a free ticket in their registration package, but may want to add significant others and friends. Tickets will be available at the door, or can be ordered in advance by going to…

See you at the party!

The Willi 2016 – Open for Business

The snow is flying and it might be too cold and too far away to think much about summer flying. But never to early to plan for The Willi XC Challenge 2016. This is a special year, our 20th anniversary . We’re also celebrating 25 years of PG competition in Golden, and 40+ years of HG at our great site.

As well as the usual meet features and events, we’re planning a big Retro Party for Saturday, July 30. Anyone who has flown Golden will be invited to wear a retired flying t-shirt or splashy flight suit, swap tales with old friends, and dance the night away (we’re getting a band) in the Pavilion at GEAR. You don’t need to participate in the Willi to get in, but as a registered competitor you’ll get in free. If you know someone we should be inviting, let us know and we’ll put them on the list.

Here’s what you need to know…

  1. Book the Dates: July 22 to Aug 1(comp days July 23rd thru 31st).
  2. Register Now: You can register now at: http://thewillixc.com/event-details/willi-registration/
  3. Beat the Cap: Due to launch and other restrictions, registration will be limited to 120 pilots. As of today, almost 50 of your flying friends are already registered.
  4. Save Some Money on Registration:Regular Entry Fee will be $120, but you can save $20 (so pay $100) by registering and paying up before June 15, 2016. Pay by June 15 and you will also be entered into a draw for a $100 gift card to a local Golden restaurant. The registration fee covers the competition, meet goodie bag (with the famous Willi XC Buff), Muller BBQ (July 23), Retro Party (July 30), and Awards Dinner (August 1).
  5. Come to the Retro Party:We want this to be memorable, so we’re getting a band, throwing down some food, and inviting anyone who has flown the valley with us over the last 40+ years. As a registered participant, you will get in for free – guests $25.
  6. Reserve Early at GEAR: Our hosts for the comp will once again be the Golden Eco-Adventure Ranch. To ensure Willi participants get their RV or tent spots booked before the place fills up, GEAR has opened their reservation system for us. Contact Trina and her staff, let them know you’re with the Willi, and book a spot now. Contact details here: http://goldenadventurepark.com/contact-gear/
  7. Get Discounted Tenting Rates: GEAR is setting aside an area in Group Camping strictly for Willi participants. They are also discounting the rate in this area to $10/person/night (i.e. $20/night for 2 sharing a tent), a great saving on their usual fees. Ask for the discount when you book at GEAR.
  8. Help Us Have a Safe, Challenging Competition: Competition rules will be essentially the same as last year – your best 3 flights count. SPOTS is required, with the tracking option on, and Dannie will be there to watch your back. And we’re going to continue with GPS scoring (you will need a GPS to score XC flights) using XC Canada. You can find more details here: http://thewillixc.com/pilotinfo/
  9. But Fun Is What We Really Want: We’re not just about the flying of course. Besides the big events mentioned earlier, count on informative (and brief) pilot meetings, daily prize draws, morning breakfasts (at $5/plate, still the best deal in the valley) and bag lunches ($10/bag at this point) prepared by the kitchen ladies, mid-week beers and movies, rainy day distractions, a random kegger, the Sunday spot landing contest, and use of the GEAR pavilion for checking your email or meeting up with friends. It’s all included in the meet fee.
  10. We Need Some Smart People: One piece of feedback we heard loud and clear last year was do more of the morning educational sessions. We need discussion leaders for these. If you have something to share that would be educational for pilots in general, and XC pilots in particular, please let us know and we’ll put you on the agenda.

If you need more info, check back here (http://thewillixc.com/), follow us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/TheWilliXCChallenge/), or send us an email to flyfar@thewillixc.com. Or for you tech savvy people, we’re now on twitter (https://twitter.com/@XC_Willi) and Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/thewillixcchallenge/).

See you at the Willi!

Follow The Willi here or on Facebook!

Regular organizer updates and pilot posts will be made on this site and on our Facebook page at…

Almost there!

We are so close to our goal for the comp: 96 pilots have signed up, 82 PGs and 14 HGs. 78 of those are paid up, so we’re going to have a crowd no matter what the weather does. In fact, I think it is safe to say The Willi XC Challenge will be the biggest Free Flight event in Canada this year. Whooohooo!

We have a winner!

The winner of the Early Registration Draw is…(drumroll please)….Willi Rens! Congrats Willi!

Willi’s name was drawn from the names of everyone signed and paid up by June 15. He’ll receive a $100 gift certificate for dinner at a local eatery in Golden. See us at registration for your prize Willi.

Check Out Our Sponsors

While we’re talking about all the pilots signing up, we should also mention the great sponsors who are signing on as well. Lots of cool prizes and discounts from great businesses who support the free flight community. Check them out at…

We’re Going Big – Sign up

We just registered pilot #80 – we’re going to be big this year. If you haven’t registered yet (or have registered and not paid), do it before end of day Monday to be in on the Early Registration draw for a great dinner in Golden while you’re there.

One Week Till Deadline

Pilot #70 just registered (see http://thewillixc.com/pilotinfo/pilots/). Only 30 spots left!! If you’re not in yet, what are you waiting for? Early Registration cut-off is next Monday. Get signed up and paid so you are included in the draw.

In the next few weeks we will start the second phase of registration to get everyone set up for SPOT tracking and XC List scoring. All registered will get the instructions via email. Doing this pre-comp means more time for having fun when we get there.

And it is going to be fun!

HG Super Sledder Award

Not long ago we announced a new award for PG Novices, the “Super Sledder”, a contest for newbies only.

(Drum rollllllllll) THERE’S A SUPER SLEDDER FOR HGs TOO. We didn’t want to leave our stiffie pilot friends out, so we will also have a prize for the HG pilot completing the greatest number of flights from launch to Muller Flight Park, with no XC points claimed, and a bonus-worthy landing (on your feet, no aluminum touching or broken, and safe, as adjudicated by the throngs watching every landing). The contest will start at noon, Saturday, July 25 (after the morning Pilot’s Meeting) and end at 3:00 PM, Sunday, Aug 2.

Trust us – the prizes are worth working for. Set your alarms, cushion your bladders and don your dust masks pilots and drivers. These new awards are also sure to turn the LZ into a much better spot for spectators.

Early Registration Deadline Coming Up!

Hey all, a gentle reminder that we’re just 13 days away from the June 15 deadline for early registration. You can save yourself $20 by registering and paying early. And, more important, you’ll have one of the just 100 spots available and be entered in the Early Registration draw for dinner while you’re in Golden.

Here are just a few other enticements as finalized at our big team meeting last night…

  • The Muller BBQ will happen Saturday evening, July 25, featuring homemade sausage (thanks Glen) and kegs of “Rutting Elk Red” (thanks Vincene, John, Dale and Randy).
  • The Pilot Bags for each competitor are logoed this year and look great. They will be stuffed with the famous Willi Buff, all kinds of helpful items, and the inevitable paper work to keep you out of the doghouse with the organizers and landowners.
  • Our sponsors are really winding up, so you can expect Morning Meeting and Dinner Raffle prizes that include a hiking harness, varios, wind meters, T-shirts, gift certificates, etc.
  • The Breakfast Ladies are raring to go with even nicer breakfasts, a lunch bag program, and the big buffet to end it all off.
  • Many ways to win, with the new “Super Sledder” Award (most landings at the LZ) joining returning favorites the “Willi Make It” (you don’t want to win this one) and “Spot, Spot, Where’s the F****G Spot”.

All this, and the best flying you will do all year. What’s the hold up – sign up! 56 pilots already have.