Every time a bell rings, a pilot laughs at the implausibility of the television show Wings. Experience the friendly skies from the air instead of your TV set with today's Groupon from Blue Ridge Helicopters, located at the LZU Airport in Lawrenceville. Choose between the following options:
- For $89, you get a discovery flight lesson for one (a $189 value).
- For $150, you get a helicopter tour of Lake Lanier Islands for two (a $300 value).
Endorsed by Governor Sonny Perdue, Blue Ridge Helicopters specializes in flight instruction and certification, as well as inspection, and maintenance of Robinson R-22s and R-44s. The discovery flight lesson, which lifts off from LZU Airport, begins with a half hour of sound ground instruction, followed by a half hour of in-air learning, during which the student handles the controls and befriends a herd of cloud goats. With 25,000 hours of combined flight time among them, Blue Ridge instructors ensure that flights in the trusted R-22 trainer are as safe and exciting as wearing pointed birthday helmets. A TruFlite simulator is also available for nervous navigators. Those who choose the tour for two can sit back in a comfortable R-44 as the beautiful landscape of Lake Lanier and its islands roll by and a hazy mountain range rises serenely in the distance.
Blue Ridge Helicopters, Inc.
Ron Carroll's fascination with helicopters began in Vietnam, when the aircraft transported him and his fellow infantry through the jungles to the front lines. Two Purple Hearts, nearly 20 years, and a stint in the publishing industry later, Carroll happened upon a copy of Flying magazine and his interest quickly rekindled. He continued with flying lessons, deepening his desire to become a helicopter pilot.
Today, Carroll possesses a Gold Seal CFI certification from the Federal Aviation Administration and helms a team of three pilots with more than 25,000 combined hours of flight experience. With a fleet comprising Robinson R22 and R44 helicopters—as well as a TruFlite H flight simulator that lets aspiring pilots practice operating a helicopter while singing and without leaving the ground—the team has trained throngs of airmen, including Governor Sonny Perdue.