Skydive Chicago’s October Newsletter

Skydive Chicago’s October 2018 Newsletter

Take a peek at the latest information and happenings at the world-famous Skydive Chicago!

A Letter From Rook Nelson

Seeing some snow falling this past week, I can safely say the season is starting to come to a close.   The cooler temperatures means putting on an extra layer or two for getting in those last precious skydives.   One thing to remember as we get those final jumps in is to perform handle checks fully geared up.  This includes gloves if your not used to wearing them.   Handles can sometime be hard to feel and may be in a different spot depending on how many layers you stuffed under your jumpsuit.   When I started skydiving in the cold, I used to think that I would be the warmest with as many layers as possible.  I was wrong and the only thing added extra layers did was limit my mobility.   I find that a good quality base layer of long underwear, wool socks, and then a fleece long sleeve was kept me just as warm if not warmer then several cotton layers.   Think about how you would dress for a day on the slopes and do something similar.   I would like to encourage you to be careful jumping in hooded sweatshirts as the hood could be a potential hazard to your reserve or main parachute.    I hope these tips keep you warm and enjoy your skydives at Skydive Chicago.

It’s Voting Time!

Is Skydive Chicago your favorite dropzone?  Then let the world know in the Blue Skies Magazine’s 2018 Dropzone Awards!

This is your chance to vote for your favorites and least favorites in the sport.  If you thought a place or a person did a fantastic job this year, you can let everyone know.  This year, the voting allows for much more detail.  If you want to write a blog about how you love Jason Russell’s organizing skills or how much you want the food to change at that other dropzone (Not SDC’s ’cause Eat Up! is crushing it!), then this is your chance.

All you have to do is click this link right here and your off an running.  Blue Skies suggested you may want to use a computer if you are going to type long responses but it’s your world.  You do what you want and you vote how you want.

Vote early and vote often!

A Message From Manifest

October operational hours are now in effect at SDC.  The dropzone is now closed on Wednesdays of each week.  Also, Manifest is now opening the office at 9 am on weekends because, well, COLD!  We will still be jumping if the skies are clear.  Don’t ever forget that we are here to SKYDIVE!

When it comes to the campground, there are still a few slots left on the waiting list for the new water slots (no, we haven’t forgotten about them. Work is being done!). To get your name on that list, just pop on in to Manifest or give them a call.  They will be happy to help you as they always do.

Unlimited passes for the 2019 season will be released to the public starting December 1st, so start making your plans now! All you need to get yours is to return to us the completed contract along with payment in full, and boom! One month in skydivers’ paradise is yours! If you’re an alum of our program, keep on the watch for your invitation to purchase a 2019 pass before they’re released to the masses.

Finally, Manifest would like to just remind people of the 50 jump minimum to stay in the campground. Many have not yet reached this, and as we’d love to keep everyone in our campground community, they should be reminded of this. We have sent out notifications to those who have not met the minimum, so people should watch their in-boxes or contact the office you are unsure if you’ve met minimum. Additionally, we will be sending out notifications in the next couple weeks to people who have not finished their 25, 50, or 100 jump packages.

Colder Weather Jumping Thoughts

As we get into October, the cold weather jumps are approaching.  Unfortunately, accidents and fatalities happen almost every year which cold weather and gear is a contributing factor.  Just last year we had a jumpers vision get obstructed by their neck scarf. Unable to see clearly, they drifted across the landing area and landed with no flare.  Thankfully, it ended without any major injury.

Please make sure that cold weather gear properly fits and does not obstruct your vision. Do some practice handle touches with those gloves.  Practice lifting your visor with gloves on. You are far more likely to have your visor fog up in cold conditions.

If you have not yet jumped with cold weather gear it may be a good idea to pull a little higher or do a hop n pop on your first jump just to give you some extra time to handle any type of situation.  If you are unsure if your gear is proper for jumping please ask an instructor or S&TA.

Don’t forget: A smart skydiver is a safe skydiver!

A Message From The Danimal

The weather lately is all over the place.  One day is using the AC to cool off the trailer and it’s 40 degrees the next night and the heaters are saving the day.  In the upcoming weeks, it’s going to get down into the 30’s for a couple days.  Chances are, the water in the campground might be turned off earlier than expected this year.  The Danimal will be watching and keeping us up to date on when the shut off will actually happen.  Until then, watch the weather and make sure to drip your faucets at night.  (Those of you who are weekenders, maybe turn you water off when you aren’t at the dropzone.  That will help freezing spigots.)

Last month we asked you all to clear the pavilion of junk and autos.  Everyone helped out and it looks great.  Thank you so very much.  That said, The Danimal has two topics he would like your help with in the future.

The first one is the garbage dumpster.  If you are going to throw items away there, please actually put the items in the dumpster.  Please don’t just toss your old table next to it.  Break the table down and put it in the dumpster.  Leaving a mattress next to it isn’t kosher either, friends.  If you have a large item to toss out, please just give The Danimal a call and he will arrange the best solution for you.  It seems like a simple issue but it’s actually a problem.  It takes manpower and time to clean up after everyone.  Please help us keep those costs down.

Secondly, this last week, The Danimal had to pick up broken glass from an adult beverage that had been broken in the landing area.  (Ok…Honestly, who’s already a bit upset?)  That’s our landing area.  You know, the place where we LAND!  Let’s remember to not bring a party to the place that isn’t for partying.  Thank you, everyone.  Grounds crew appreciates your help.

Rock Sky Market Is Here To Help

As the end of the season is slowly starting to happen, Rock Sky Market has some awesome discounts on apparel and gear for you!  It’s that time of year to think about a new rig for next season.  If you order now, your brand new rig will be ready for next season.  Rock Sky Market has anything and everything you will need to be happy with your purchase.  They are there to help walk you thru the process and explain all the options to make sure you get exactly what you need and know why you’re getting it.

They also have the new “Need For Speed”, Top Gun themed sweatshirts in the store and, if you didn’t get a chance to grab a Summerfest T-shirt, they are on sale for $10.

Used gear keeps on cycling in and sells quickly, so check back regularly if you need anything.

Finally, the rigging loft will stay open until the very last day of jumping, and beyond!  Walk in anytime until the end of the season as usual. If you need anything after the season ends in November, just give them a call to set up an appointment. Their riggers are on staff year round!

Eagle Air Wants You!

As many of you have heard, Eagle Air (SDC’s fleet management company) is going to have their hands busy with a new Skyvan.  On top of that, they are going to be busy getting all the aircraft cleaned, checked-out, and ready for a busy 2019 season both at SDC and abroad.

With all the work ahead and the growing nature of their business, Eagle Air is looking to add and an additional A&P at their Ottawa, IL location.  They operate a fleet of eight aircraft consisting of Twin Otters, Skyvans, and Caravans.

If you would like to be a part of the SDC and Eagle Air Team, then please contact Donovan Bartlett directly at for further information.

SDC’s Annual Halloween Party Is Almost Here

Have you ever been to a Skydive Chicago Halloween Party?  If you have, then you know.  If you haven’t…. What are you waiting for, people?!  Join us for our annual Halloween Party on Saturday, October 27th!

One of the most creative and fun events of the year is sure to impress with another night of amazing costumes and fun. Dressing up is not required but greatly encouraged. Show your Halloween spirit and come to have some fun!

Eat Up will be serving dinner before the games begin. Shortly after the games, our costume contest will begin. Jumps and other prizes will be given away for all the winners. Stick around afterwords for our DJ’s who will spin the night away!

Dinner starts at 6:00 pm and games and the costume contest are to follow starting at 8:00 PM.  While there is a cost for dinner, entrance is FREE!  Just be sure to bring that Halloween spirit with you when you come!

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