Model planes fly high above Mary’s Pond

Aug 19, 2023

ROCHESTER — For Bristol County Radio Control Club safety officer Gary Dupont, flying model planes is “a formula for youth.”

“We kind of revert back to ten-year-olds [when flying model planes],” said Dupont. “We have a lot of foolish fun.”

The Bristol County Radio Control Club hosted the annual John Nicolaci Memorial Float Fly at Mary’s Pond  on Saturday, Aug. 19.

The event honors late Marion resident John Nicolaci, a World War II veteran who first acquired use of the pond for himself and other club members. According to Bristol County Radio Control Club president Gary Carreiro, Nicolaci’s wife Ruth who attended past  annual events died earlier this year.

“For us it’s bitter sweet this year,” said Carreiro.

According to Dupont, some club members build their own models while others focus on flying. 

“It looks like a real plane,” said one young crowd member as Duponts’ Piper Cub model plane performed barrel rolls and twists above Mary’s Pond. 

Joe Martinez of Dartmouth flew his model M.C. 72 Italian seaplane alongside Dupont’s Piper Cub, making sure to keep a safe distance. 

“Once you get established and you’re no longer crashing stuff each week it gets a lot less expensive,” said Martinez. 

Dupont added that strong winds can cause the model planes to “flip like a cheese omelet.”

“The nice part is, we walk away from every landing that we make,” said Dupont. “That’s a draw right there.”