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Strathalbyn Model Aircraft Club was started and incorporated in 1974 by a group of High School mates including Peter Blackwell, Brian Lockett, Ron Richardson, Mark Collins and Noel Wenzel. Noel was elected the first President, a post he held for 23 years. We have Noel to thank for establishing the strength of the Club and nurturing the good relationship we enjoy with the Council and the local community. There have been several Presidents since that time including John Watters after whom the Club’s annual John Watters Memorial Scale Fun Fly Day is named.
The Club’s first flying field was at Murray Road and we moved to the current location via Belvedere Aerodrome and various other sites when in 1994/95 Alexandrina Council bought the land and asked for expressions of interest from sporting groups. SMAC were the only ones to respond and we have leased the land from the Council since that time. The current flying field has been named the Noel Wenzel Field in recognition of Noel’s many years of devoted service to the club.
The Membership of the Club grew over the years rising to 50 members at one point and is now about 40 members. Over the years we have constantly worked to improve the facilities to the point where we now have a clubroom, parking area, toilets, two storage containers, and excellently arranged work benches, starting areas and safety fences. In this we have had much appreciated help from other organisations – St. Johns donating a water storage tank, MASA providing a loan to help with the purchase of a new mower and the Alexandrina Council with a grant for a new rain water tank.