Galaxy Aviation hits record at YVRA

More fuel than ever sold Dec. 27 by new fixed-base operator

— Private aviation at Yampa Valley Regional Airport experienced a record-setter last month.

Dec. 27 was the best day in history in terms of volume of fuel sold for private aviation, said Don Kaplan, regional manager for Galaxy Aviation. Galaxy took over from Spectrum Jet Center as fixed-base operator at the Hayden airport last fall.

Kaplan would not say how much fuel Galaxy sold that Saturday.

"I know, fuel-wise, we were 30 percent higher than Spectrum had ever done before, and that's substantial when you consider this down market," he said. "It threw us for a loop."

Kaplan attributed the burst to wintry weather.

"There was plenty of snow, and everybody wanted to come to Steamboat," he said. "And I think that all the predictions that we were going to be doom and gloom (should) not be heeded. People are going to come when we have the snow."

Airport Manager Dave Ruppel said he was pleased with Galaxy's performance. Fixed-based operators generally service corporate and general aviation traffic at airports that may separately provide commercial air service, such as county-owned YVRA.

Florida-based Galaxy is the fixed-base operator in Hayden and at five Florida locations: West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Stuart, Orlando and St. Augustine. Ruppel attributed Galaxy's traffic to a high profile.

"Being a national FBO, : they've got a lot of connections with the people who fly these planes, and they get the word out that they've got this facility out here," Ruppel said.

He said Galaxy was attracting more general aviation pilots from across the country.

"They've just done an exceptional job of making this thing work," Ruppel said.

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