Beware of flying flapjacks at this year's pancake fly-in at EMU's Eagle Flight Centre

by Debra Johnson, Published May 12, 2014


YPSILANTI – More than just airplanes will be flying around at the Eastern Michigan University Eagle Flight Centre’s Pancake Fly-In on Saturday, May 17.

People from around the Midwest will fly-in (or drive-in) to the Willow Run Airport to enjoy a pancake breakfast and other fun and educational events that can be enjoyed by the whole family from 8 a.m. to noon. The event is open to the public.

To start the day, a pancake chef from the world-famous Chris Cakes of Michigan will be on hand, flipping flapjacks to hungry patrons. The first pancakes will start flying around 8 a.m. at the Eagle Flight Centre, located at 3099 Tyler Road, Ypsilanti, MI.

The chef routinely throws his pancakes from 10, 20 or 30 feet away to hungry guests who are challenged to catch a stack of the fluffy breakfast delights. For the less courageous, pancakes are also served within arm's reach. 

In addition to breakfast, fundraiser attendees will be able to see a variety of planes that have made the trek across the country for the event.  


One of the planes on display at last year's EMU Eagle Flight Centre Pancake Fly-In

“In years past, we’ve had between 20-30 planes that fly in for our pancake fundraiser,” said Tom Simon, president of the EMU Alpha Eta Rho – Sigma Chi fraternity and organizer for the event. “There have been old historic biplanes, tail-wheels, pipers and experimental aircraft for folks to see. We never know who’s going to attend the event so it’s always exciting to see all the different kinds of aircraft that show up.”

EMU’s Alpha Eta Rho - Sigma Chi is a professional coed collegiate aviation fraternity that was founded to bring together students having a common interest in the field of aviation. Proceeds from the pancake fundraiser will go towards the purchase of a new flight simulator for training Alpha Eta Rho members.

The Eagle Flight Centre will have its complete fleet of Cessna 172S and their Twin Seminole airplanes on display. Event goers will be invited to sit in the cockpit of the state-of-the-art planes while flight instructors provide demonstrations of the aircraft.

The Federal Aviation Administration Safety Team will have an exhibition at the event and will be conducting safety demonstrations. The Eagle Flight Centre will also have its flight simulator available for demonstration as well.

The cost for the pancake breakfast is $7 per person and includes all-you-can-eat pancakes, sausage, orange juice and coffee. The funds raised will help support the EMU Alpha Eta Rho – Sigma Chi professional fraternity.

“We are raffling off an Introductory Flight Lesson, where one lucky winner will be able to experience the thrill of flight,” said Simon. “The winner will take flight in a new Cessna Skyhawk 172 SP, equipped with the Garmin G1000 glass cockpit, with one of Eagle Flight Centre's Certified Flight Instructors. They will learn some of the basic maneuvers we do everyday and they will also be able to log their flight time with the instructor in their very own log book."

Raffle tickets are $3 per ticket or $15 for 6 tickets. For more information, contact Thomas Simon at or call 586-413-0408 or visit the EMU Pancake Fly-In Facebook Page

Debra Johnson

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