Flying high: Tyler’s Northside Park creates a space for model airplane enthusiasts

The Tyler Loop's Park Spotlight series.

Northside Park, located at 2301 West Northwest Loop 323 boasts model airplane fields for public use. Open from 7a.m. to 8:30 p.m, the park allows modelers to fly custom planes. 

Eddie McElvy, left, and Ron Still, right, fly a model plane at Northside Park. 📷 all photos by Jude Ratcliff

Among Northside Park’s most enthusiastic visitors are members of the Tyler Modelers Club who utilize the airplane field to fly their custom creations.

“The most important pleasure of my life is the wonderful members of our club and many other clubs and pilots around the United States,” said Jack Hogan, Tyler Modelers Club organizer. “Flying at Northside Park provides a safe, local flying field.”

Founded in the 1970s according to their website, the Tyler Modeler’s Club modelers purchased supplies from a hobby shop in the Green Acres Shopping Center and flew their planes on Sundays in the lot now occupied by Broadway Square Mall.  

Northside Park has been their home field since 1992. The Texas Unlimited Fun Flyers club led by president Harold Smith and vice president Randy Rodgers, regularly flying events at Northside Park. They provide lunch and other entertainment.

“The TMC is an active and growing club with members ranging from about nine to 90 years of age,” said Wayne Garrett, a Tyler Modelers Club organizer. “Visiting flyers are always welcome. There are flyers at the field almost every day of the week, weather permitting.”

Northside Park has space for hobbyists and casual model plane enthusiasts. The fields allow those invested in flying to continue their craft, and it gives newcomers a chance to engage with model planes.

“The Tyler Parks Department has done a great job maintaining the park,” Hogan said. “I started modeling at 15 years old, and today at 80 it is still just as much fun.”

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