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Hands Across the (Frozen) Water

International Skiplane Fly-In on Lake Memphremagog, February 19

International Skiplane Fly-In
U.S. pilots (right) greet their Canadian counterparts across the International Boundary at the 2010 Ski Fly Meet on Lake Memphremagog, as a pair of RCMP constables stand by.

International Skiplane Fly-In
To the east, the border is clearly seen in the cut line through the southern part of Providence Island.

International Skiplane Fly-In
Two U.S. skiplanes with the border cut line in the background.

January 12, 2011 —George Weller, EAA 185481, of Stanstead, Quebec/Derby Line, Vermont, is organizing a unique skiplane event next month that invites Canadian and American pilots to fly in and land on a frozen lake situated in both Vermont and Quebec. “We have permission to hold our third annual Ski Fly Meet on Lake Memphremagog on February 19, where we fly onto the ice on our respective sides of the border and meet at the line,” Weller wrote in an e-mail to EAA.

Pronounced “Mem-free-MAY-gogg,” the lake is about 30 miles long. The plan is for pilots to fly in and land on the ice on the west side of Providence Island, on their respective side of the International Boundary. The border can be easily seen, represented by east/west cut lines - where the trees have been cut from the Atlantic coast to the Pacific coast. Border officials from both countries will be on hand to assure there are no border difficulties. Pilots are allowed “minor” contact across the line, but there must be no exchange of goods and no crossing with intent to enter the country to stay without reporting.

“We can walk around and look at each other’s airplanes and mingle together, as long as we do not pass stuff around to each other, or enter the other country and continue in it,” Weller said. “This is special permission for us and for this event.”

Those who are considering attending can send an e-mail to Weller and be kept up to date with new information as it occurs. Everyone operates at their own risk, of course. You can also find the general information for the fly meet on this website.

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