SPARTA, Mich. (WOOD) — The November winds and snow have brought much of the fall foliage to the ground, but many fall colors still can be found clinging to the trees near Grand Rapids.
For the next three weekends, MI Flight Aviation is offering extended weekend color tour helicopter rides out of Paul C. Miller Airport in Sparta from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“There are a lot of leaves that have fallen but there are still some great views up there,” MI Flight Aviation pilot Tony DeWolf said. “There are a lot of good patches of different colors and when the sun hits it really reflects off it, it really is a pretty view. If you’ve never seen it from the sky, right now is a perfect time to see it.”
Making a potentially once in a lifetime experience more affordable is one of the reasons DeWolf says he loves his job.
“We make it possible for you to see things you simply can’t from the ground,” DeWolf said. “For me it’s great to see the joy on our customers faces because I’m worried about flying the helicopter, to see them fully enjoying the experience means I’m doing my job well.”
Logan Burnett, 12, had never flown before Sunday. He was shocked when his mom surprised him with the news.
“I woke up and my mom is like, Logan, let’s go ride in a helicopter,” Burnett said. “I was scared cause I’m a fraud of heights, but it was fun.”
Rides cost $50 and last five minutes in the air. DeWolf said the quicker flights help keep prices low and wait times short.
“By offering five-minute flights, we’re able to get more passengers in the air and that helps us keep our prices low so more people can experience these awesome sights,” he said.
MI Flight Aviation books entirely through their website.
The Michigan-based company currently offers additional tours of the Grand Haven lakeshore and Detroit skyline but plans on returning to Sparta to offer snow tours and tours of the city of Grand Rapids.
“We really are able to get our passengers closer to the action in most cases,” said DeWolf “We fly about 500 feet off the ground so what they are getting is truly a bird’s-eye view. To say you’ve been up in a helicopter and then come back down its just an exciting feeling.”
Inside woodtv.com: Photos of fall colors in West Michigan 2019