It’s no secret that here at Friends of Albert Whitted Airport (FAWA), there’s a lot of love for AWA. Our love for Albert Whitted Airport comes from recognizing it as an important place for medical, education, business, tourism, and historical reasons, plus a whole lot more.

But it seems that the good people of St. Pete are big fans of the airport, too. 

To celebrate the love that we share for Albert Whitted Airport, we’ve made a list. 

As the song goes, these Are a Few of Our Favorite Things:

#1 It’s a dream maker

When you understand the interesting history of Albert Whitted Airport, the birthplace of commercial aviation, you see that it’s a place for dreams to take flight.

Here, experienced flight instructors help hundreds of students to get their wings and realize their dream of learning to fly. AWA has even launched a new scholarship program to help even more dreams come true for deserving young people. On April 1, Capt Barrington Irving, an internationally known aviator, and educator will present the first round of Flight Training Scholarships at Albert Whitted Airport. 

#2 It’s the cornerstone of the Grand Prix

As the starting and finish line of the annual St. Pete Grand Prix, Albert Whitted provides the principal infrastructure for the race, which generates over $40+ million in economic benefit for the community. 

The St. Pete Grand Prix was revived in 2003 and started using an AWA runway to create a unique part airfield/part street circuit combination. The event is hugely popular, usually featuring as the season opener of the IndyCar Series.

#3 It’s the perfect place to watch the world go by

Whether you’re enjoying a leisurely breakfast at The Hangar, or just out exploring, AWA is the best place to sit and watch the planes and helicopters. Plane spotting is a relaxing way to while away an afternoon, and there’s so much happening at Albert Whitted Airport.

Now, here’s a top tip for all of you plane lovers out there: using the airport camera on the EarthCam network or app, you can watch the planes take off over the waterfront and land on the runways. EarthCam has partnered with St. Pete Air so that viewers can watch as the planes fly around the open skies. What a thrilling way to pass the day.

#4 It’s a wonderful place to eat

At Albert Whitted Airport, you’re spoiled for choice at The Hangar Flight Lounge when it comes to breakfast, lunch, dinner, or just a leisurely coffee. The food and service are always great, and you can choose between indoor and outdoor seating. There are specials throughout the week to tempt you, and you can pack a picnic to enjoy at the public recreation areas.

And oh boy, what a view!

Friends for life

Like all love stories, Albert Whitted Airport has so much to explore. We think that when you love something, you should shout it from the rooftops. And there’s a lot to love about Albert Whitted Airport.

We love Albert Whitted Airport so much that we want to ensure that in the future it will be a beacon for the next generation. Albert Whitted Airport is a downtown St. Pete gem, and we want to keep it shining for everyone to enjoy. 

As controversial talks continue about the future of the 100-acre Albert Whitted Airport, AWA’s supporters continue to share their love of this almost 100-year-old airport by telling stories about this special treasure in our community. Why not share the love? On our blog, we share stories from the St. Pete community members who love the airport. Get in touch if you’d like to tell your own AWA love story, or donate.