The Rotary Club of Portola’s Annual Fly-In Pancake Breakfast will be held once again this year at the airport in Beckwourth on Sunday, Sept. 11. After cancellations due to the pandemic in 2020 and 2021, this year’s event promises to be one of the best. There will be live music, displays of classic cars and trucks, a bounce house for the little ones, free airplane rides for kids 8 through 17, and of course the Rotary Club’s delicious all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast.
Airport manager Herb Bishop has been hosting the breakfast in his hangar for many years. “It’s a great event,” Bishop said. “It’s a lot of work to get everything all cleaned up and ready, but it’s all for a good cause. Besides, it gives me an excuse to go through things around here once a year.”
The “good cause” is Rotary community service projects. Essentially 100 percent of proceeds go straight back into the community. In 2019 the funds raised sent three Portola High School juniors to a weeklong youth leadership camp at Grizzly Ranch. Five eighth graders were also sponsored to attend a weekend course designed to prepare them to become leaders and role models as they enter ninth grade. The club also dedicates the funds to an expansive Literacy program – providing adults to read to elementary school students, books and facilitators for Rotary’s middle school and high school book clubs, books for elementary school students, and teaching important lessons in ethics in our schools.
Additionally, the Rotary Club of Portola brought high level leadership and ethics training to Portola Jr/Senior High School through the “Breaking Down the Walls” project. This training helped the students and faculty rebuild a good learning environment after two years of COVID-19 issues.
“The Fly-In is our signature fundraiser,” said Club Co-President Elizabeth Cruse. “After a disappointing two years off, all of our 24 members are very engaged in making this year’s Fly-In better than ever. Attendance is the key to our success.”
“With live music, Gin Fizzes, the Young Eagles program, our bounce house, and classic cars on display there really is something for everyone,” she said, “Also, this year’s raffle is going to be one of our biggest yet, with lots of prizes to raffle off.”
Serving starts at 8 a.m. and closes at 1 1 a.m.. Tickets are currently on sale at several local businesses and can be purchased at the door: $10 for children under 12, and $14 for adults. Breakfast includes pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausage, coffee and Orange Juice, or milk. In remembrance of Sept. 11, all first responders attending in uniform eat for free.