As I mentioned before, a few weeks ago, I went to the Unicorn Boogie at Skydive California. What I didn’t mention was that this event is just one of the activities of Aeronautrixx, a nonprofit aiming “to help women pursue their aeronautical dreams”.
Who & What?
Who: Karen Woolem, the creator, President and general organizational badass of Aeronautrixx, has been jumping off and on since the end of 1990. Her favorite discipline is belly and, as a lover of beautiful color-coordinated gear, I’ve got to
say she has her gear game on lock, sporting black, purple and pink gear.
What: “Aeronautrixx is a 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation with the goal of providing education, guidance, sponsorship, and resources to help women pursue their aeronautical dreams in a fun and safe manner.” (Stolen directly from their website: https://aeronautrixx.com/)
Aeronautrixx Hosts Boogies!
While originally a jumper in NorCal, she’s now relocated to Florida and she hosts a boogie there, the SISters by the Sea Boogie (a.k.a. the Mermaid Boogie) in the spring at Skydive Sebastian. She also hosts the Unicorn Boogie each fall at Skydive California in Tracy, CA.
Having either ran a belly skills camp or load organized at both events this year, I can vouch for the awesome atmosphere that Karen cultivates at these boogies. At the Mermaid Boogie this year, there were so many women that th
ere would often be only a couple guys on the each plane load! Karen brings in fun, enthusiastic load organizers and brings in Trunk with Hypoxic to document the whole thing! What’s better than doing a really fun hoop jump in a unicorn onesie? Having artistic, high quality pictures of it! In addition to facilitating great jumps, she pours massive amounts of time and energy to put together cute, thoughtful gift bags and she works with lots of vendors to amass prizes for the raffle at each boogie.
In short, she puts everything she has into making these events fun, inviting, and special. If you’re interested in trying out a new boogie, I recommend these!
Aeronautrixx & Gear Donations
In addition to the boogies, Aeronautrixx hopes to smash one of the biggest barriers to getting and staying in the sport: getting used beginner-friendly gear that fits women’s frames. Renting gear is expensive. Buying gear is even more expensive. Everyone remembers finding their first gear set-up, whether it was old and pieced-together like Frankenstein, or shiny and brand-new, made just for you! Mostly likely, if you’re like me, you’re in the former category. Even with a good deal on used gear, the price tag of your first set of gear hurts. In addition to price barriers, so many women have issues finding used gear that fits both their small frame and their initial large main canopies. Karen says, “Containers have always been hard to find. Easy to fine one that will fit my body, but not one that isn’t a sub 100.” As a result, she has always purchased new containers. However, many new, younger jumpers may not have that ability.
So how can you help?
Donate your airworthy equipment to Aeronautrixx! Recently, someone donated a complete system to them! Additionally, Aeronatrixx has received a main canopy and a few helmets, which is a great start. So many of us have gear that we can’t be bothered to make the effort to sell, so think about donating it.
What’s in the Aeronatrixx Future?
- More Donations!
- More Boogies!
- More education and articles about women in the sport!
I’m slowly migrating my website to wordpress because I just can’t CSS hard enough, and I’d rather focus on content. Here’s the article on the new site!