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Soaring, into the wild unknown - June 21, 2009
By: Jerry Nunn

It was simple table talk really – informal banter floated across the table while deciding which line-up of events the Info Northeast Festival Task Force (F.T.F.) would cover on its second weekend of existence.

The early morning hour at which it started sealed the deal for last Saturday’s Annual Fly-in and Pancake Breakfast, sponsored by Chapter 1253 of the Experimental Aircraft Association and held at West Branch Community Airport. With Central Michigan Skydivers scheduled as part of the fare, the decision was all that much easier.

That’s when the most ludicrous words came from my son Scott Nunn’s mouth.

“Hey, how about if I jumped from the plane.”

I knew right away where the idea was heading. As my Info Northeast business partner, the guy known as “Tin Man” on both the F.T.F. and the Town Talk discussion forum was thinking of ways to drum up support for yet another Northeast Michigan event while at the same time gaining some needed attention for Info Northeast.

“We could play it up by inviting friends and family,” Scott said. “It would be good for the event and even better for us. Think of the exposure.”

The “exposure” one receives from jumping from a perfectly good airplane was about the only thing I could think of as I tried to change “Tin Man’s” mind.

Turns out, it was needless worry on my part. A full docket of parachuters put Scott’s place in the skydiving line up around number 16. With his jump scheduled late in the afternoon – long after the envisioned crowds would disperse – we decided the freefalling promotional opportunity would be for naught.

We nixed the whole idea.

Or so I thought.

As it was, inclement weather and a flat tire on the jump plane put the CMS team way behind schedule; so far behind schedule in fact that Ogemaw County Sheriff Howie Hanft had to leave before his flight. And that left Tanger Mall Manager Vickie Seltz Barnes without her preplanned jump partner.
Barnes’ call for someone to accompany her aloft – as well as back down to Earth by way of a thin, billowing sheet of cloth – was quickly answered by none other than an all-to-willing “Tin Man.”

Fortunately, the last minute change in plans minimized my chance for fear and in the end, I gleefully shared in Scott’s excitement at realizing his long-dreamed goal of jumping from a plane.

So exciting was the jump, that here it is two days later and Scott is still waiting to fully touch down. And while the entire thought seems like craziness to me, the heady emotion one receives when leaping from the known into the unknown is one Scott and I have shared before.

It was he and I, after all, who threw fortune to the wind for the sake of a dream and launched Info Northeast. And now, here we are, three weeks on and the excitement at what we have done still has me walking with my feet a few feet off the ground.

I guess I better get used to it.

Scott says Info Northeast is about to soar a whole lot higher and I don’t doubt it for a minute.
You see, Info Northeast already has the support of important folks across Northeast Michigan who can visualize its potential of becoming the source for regional news. Even before our launch our good friend Paula Belden of Tawas latched on to the dream to become an integral part of what Info Northeast is about to become.

And last week we sat down with Web design professionals. Now that the three of us have the full faith and backing of those design pros, folks who can help Info Northeast realize that potential, we are taking one even greater leap.

This week we begin seeking news writers and photographers to help fill our Web pages, as well as an advertising sales team to help produce revenue. Those folks will all help get the Info Northeast show on the road. But they won’t make our dreams for Info Northeast take flight.

For that we need citizen reporters and local correspondents, folks who are in on the table talk and informal conversations that take place everyday across Northeast Michigan. Those are the people who will matter most at Info Northeast. They’ll be the ones who will touch on the topics that matter to most to the folks who live here.

They are the ones who will help Info Northeast fulfill its loftier mission that we’ve been aiming for all along: News and information generated by you, enabled by us, shared by all.

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