Updated: Oct 21, 2022
Friday Night Lights looked a little different for Angel Hawk pilots on September 30, 2022, in Fort Collins, Colorado. For the first time, Angel Hawk conducted drone operations at an NCAA Division I venue with a seating capacity of over 36,500 seats. The high school sporting event, dubbed the Community Classic, partnered Colorado State University with four local high school football teams: Rocky Mountain High School, Poudre High School, Fossil Ridge High School, and Fort Collins High School. Angel Hawk delivered unparalleled aerial video to each of the above teams with an experienced FAA-rated drone pilot and the latest drone technology.
Angel Hawk Founder and CEO, Collin Caffrey, began coordinating with Colorado State University (CSU) authorities and the Poudre School District Athletic Director weeks prior to the event for permission to fly drones at Canvas Stadium. Per the Colorado High School Activities Association’s (CHSAA) drone policy, written permission must be obtained from the host school district during regular season games. The local approval process included the submission of a special event request form, basic flight plan, aviation insurance documentation, and FAA certification licenses for each drone pilot. Additionally, the CSU Drone Center was involved in the planning and provided safety recommendations to Angel Hawk.
With all permissions obtained, Angel Hawk faced a few other challenges at Canvas Stadium. Pending showers turned into steady rain just before kickoff. Because precipitation can damage drones, the pilots were grounded. Drones were mounted onto fixed tripods and shielded inside a weather covering, but still captured game footage. Angel Hawk’s comprehensive service includes a rain or shine guaranteed provision. After the skies cleared, pilots launched their Mavic 2 Zoom drones and conducted normal operations.
A number of spectators were very interested in seeing drones landing and taking off from behind the north goal post. Angel Hawk cordoned off a landing area with large orange cones to keep onlookers at a safe distance. Vice President of Operations, Michael Buchkoski, answered many drone questions from the fans while the pilots carefully maneuvered their aircraft. The local pilots pictured above and below included Ethan Debelak, Steven Kidder, Scott Tometich, and Phillip Kinnison. They deserve all the credit for their attention to detail, safety record, and dedication to their assigned team.
Since 2017, Angel Hawk has flown over 1,000 sporting events for 60 teams without incident or accident. Whether flying at a small footfield field in eastern Colorado or at Canvas Stadium, Angel Hawk is committed to providing each team with exceptional game film rain or shine. We are fully insured, FAA compliant, and uphold the highest safety standards. To learn more visit Angel Hawk.
About the Author: Michael P. Buchkoski, an FAA rated drone pilot, serves as the Vice President of Operations of Angel Hawk, a Denver-based drone service company specializing in aerial videography for athletic events throughout the nation. He is available at email@example.com.