Event Activities

Educational Activities

Event Activities

Educational Activities

SNF Workshops

The Aerospace Educators’ Workshop

Join us for an exciting day learning how to integrate aviation, space, robotics and more into your curriculum! All K-12 teachers are invited to attend.

Begin with the thrill of being selected in a random drawing to fly with the AeroShell Aerobatic Team! Enjoy breakfast followed by the opening ceremony with special speakers to welcome you to Sun ‘n Fun. Then choose from a variety of concurrent sessions being offered throughout the morning.

At noon, head back to the Buehler Center for a delicious lunch featuring an astronaut as the keynote speaker.

This is the place to be! We’ll motivate and inspire you with lots of ideas and activities to use in your classroom! Come experience STEM with us and inspire your students to reach for the stars!

Ray Lien Award

Ray Lien was reputed as an excellent aviation educator. He envisioned an Aerospace Educators Workshop in 1988. Ray was introduced to aviation in 1925 by his Platte, South Dakota, neighbors. Ray enlisted in the US Army Air Corps in January 1942. Throughout WWII, Ray served as a Maintenance Officer in various locations, but predominantly in North Africa with B-26 and B-25 aircraft. After the war, Ray joined the Air Force Reserve, where he continued to serve in the maintenance field until his retirement as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1970.

Ray Lien earned a BS in Agricultural Engineering from South Dakota State College in 1941 and an MS in Agricultural Engineering in 1958. He actually began teaching at Purdue University in 1953, which he continued until 1987. He was one of the few Purdue University faculty to ever rise from an Instructor to Full Professor without earning a PhD. In 1988, he became Coordinator (and later Chairman) of Educational Project for SUN ‘n FUN and started the first Aerospace Educator Workshop.

In Ray’s honor, we proudly present the Ray Lien Award annually during the SUN ‘n FUN Aerospace Expo during the Aerospace Educators Workshop. This award is given to recognize an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to aviation education.

Nomination Procedures – Deadline March 13th, 2020.

  • The award will be presented at SUN ‘n FUN in Lakeland, Florida during the Aerospace Educators Workshop. We request the recipient be present at the Workshop to receive the award.
  • Anyone can nominate a person and it can be self-nominated. The nominator must submit a letter of support for the candidate by describing his/her contributions to aviation education.
  • The recipient must agree to present a session for teachers at the following year’s workshop.
  • The nomination letter of support should be emailed to Bill Yucuis no later than March 13th, 2020.

RAY LIEN Award Winners

Spirit of an Educator – “Knowledge is the key to aviation’s future.”

1998 Paul Poberezny1999 A. Scott Crossfield2000 Lyle R. Flagg
2001 Billy Henderson2002 Gene Olson2003 Dr. Charley Rodriguez
2004 Dr. Carol Denicole2005 Barbara Walters-Phillips2006 Greg Harbaugh
2007 Marie Grein2008 Richard Ortega2009 Chad Smith
2010 Barry Scharf2011 Lori Bradner2012 Bill Yucuis
2013 Joseph Oliver2014 John Iskra2015 Not Awarded
2016 George "Gabe" Gabrielle2017 Thomas J. Sarko2018 Mary Catherine Vaughn
2019 Marie Hill

  • Airborne Maintenance and Engineering Services
  • Air Transport International
  • Air Wisconsin
  • Bombardier Aviation
  • Cirrus Aircraft
  • Citadel Completions
  • Commutair
  • Compass Airline
  • Endeavor Air
  • ExpressJet
  • Frontier Airlines
  • GAMA Aviation Signature
  • General Electric Aviation
  • GoJet Airlines
  • Piedmont Airlines
  • PlaneSense
  • PSA Airlines
  • Republic Airways
  • Remote Imagery Technologies, Inc.
  • Sebring Flight Academy
  • SkyWest Airlines
  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection

View positions each company will be hiring for on site here.

Forums Schedule

The SUN ‘n FUN Educational Forums are held in the Central Florida Aerospace Academy, our onsite aviation-based high school.  Our forums utilize 75% of the air-conditioned classroom space in the facility.  Our forums provide our guests the opportunity to gain knowledge on aviation topics from A to Z.  Our presenters come from all over the country to share information, offer guidance and add to the overall value of your time here at SUN ‘n FUN.  We hope you enjoy the schedule we have put together for you this year!

Click here for an active, searchable daily schedule that will continue to be updated up until the convention begins – search “Forums” for scheduled forums and search “Forums – Not Currently Scheduled” if you are looking for presentation space availability.

The static daily forum schedule below will be available just prior to the convention.  (Subject to change)

A classroom floorplan is provided to the right.  Rooms that are not labeled with a Forum # are classrooms the school will use during the week of SUN ‘n FUN.  Subject to change!

Interested in Presenting a Forum during SUN ‘n FUN 2020?

To view current availability, go to our 2020 Daily Schedule and search for “Forum – Not Currently Scheduled“.  If you register for a forum, please include what day and time will work for your schedule from the time slots still available.

Would you like to contribute to the diverse types of information shared throughout the week of SUN ‘n FUN?

SUN ‘n FUN is very interested in providing a variety of forums on topics that range from aircraft restoration to woodworking and much, much more. This information-filled week provides our guests the opportunity to take home information on just about any aviation-related topic available. Share your knowledge with them.

EDUCATIONAL FORUMS are not for selling or promoting a particular product or service and cannot be used in place of an exhibit space purchase, this is strictly educational opportunity for our guests to enjoy.

If you have knowledge on an aviation topic and would like to share with your fellow aviators, please complete the form below.  Once we begin compiling the schedule we will contact you if we have questions regarding your topic or schedule request.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Hands-On Workshops

The SUN ‘n FUN workshops have enjoyed a popularity with builders that is unmatched by other Venues.

All the workshops are staffed by a combination of amateur and professional instructors with extensive experience in the subjects they present. Many of our instructors hold FAA Airframe and Power Plant Mechanic ratings and or have extensive experience with vendors supplying the aviation community.

All of our volunteers are dedicated to the education of Homebuilders to aid in the safe and reliable construction of all forms of Experimental and Amateur Built Aircraft. Most of our volunteer instructors are builders themselves and enthusiastically share their experience with novice builders.

The workshops include:

  •  Woodworking, Includes construction of wing ribs, fuselage, jigs and tooling and adhesives.
  • Metal fabrication, Sheet metal selection, cutting, drilling and riveting, fabrication of all metal aircraft components.
  • Metal shaping, this shop covers the shaping of custom compound shapes in aluminum using various metal shaping techniques and equipment.
  • Oxy-fuel Welding of both steel and aluminum, Oxy-acetylene and oxy-hydrogen welding techniques for fabrication of steel structures and aluminum components.
  • TIG/MIG Welding of both steel and aluminum, this program, presented by Lincoln Electric covers Tungsten inert gas (TIG) and Metal inert gas (MIG) welding.
  • Avionics/Electrical installation, The proper wire, terminals, tools and techniques for installation of a reliable aircraft electrical system are provided.
  • Electrical Noise and Trouble shooting, proper installation and isolation of circuits to reduce interference and “noise” in avionics systems.
  • Fabric Aircraft Covering, hands on experience in fabric covering and doping provided here.
  • Rib Stitching, The attachment of fabric to wing structures is explained, demonstrated and learned here.
  • Composite Construction, Foam shaping and cutting, fiberglass and resin selection and application and vacuum forming, taught here.
  • Safety Wiring and Cable Swaging, the use of safety wire and proper tools for installation of safety wire and swaging of control cables covers bolting, turnbuckles, thimbles, propellers, etc.
  • Engines and Firewall Forward Installations. This shop covers all things engines. Engine maintenance, assembly, modification and installation are addressed as well as display and run-up of various engines.

Many of our shops are FAA approved for IA renewal and we are in the process of obtaining approval for additional presentations.

WORKSHOPS: (Daily : 9am – 4pm)

For the Convention Attendee who wishes to gain experience and knowledge, these Workshops are a bonus not only to the FAA Licensed, A&P and IA Technician but to the Amateur Aircraft Builder alike. Pay the entrance fee at the gate and the rest is free. The cost of these Workshops if paid for individually would cost thousands of dollars, but SUN ‘n FUN provides all this for just the cost of admission.

For more information on Event Activities, please visit our Daily Schedule!


Project: STRATOS

The Aerospace Center for Excellence is excited to announce Project: STRATOS 2020, an aviation oriented arts and leadership program for high school students.

All high school aged students are eligible.

Students of Senior standing will be eligible for an opportunity to earn a training flight with Stallion 51 in a P51 Mustang.

Students of Junior standing will be eligible for enhanced recognition while Sophomore and Freshmen finalists will receive an action camera for use during the 2020 Fly-In and additional valuable prizes.

The 2020 Project: STRATOS program consists of 4 components and students are asked to participate in as many proposed programs as possible. The semi-finalists and finalists may be drawn from any of the program components.

  1. Write an essay on the 2020 topic: A Clear Vision of Aviation in the Future
  2. Submit an original work of art on the 2020 topic: A Clear Vision of Aviation in the Future
  3. Complete and submit certificate from FEMA independent study Course 241b or 242b (we will provide registration information)
  4. Attend physical activity training sessions on the ACE Campus

ANY student wishing to participate in any or all of these components should send an email to stratos@flysnf.org as soon as possible for additional details.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Students wishing to participate in Project: STRATOS must be available the week of March 31 – April 5, 2020 to participate in the SUN ‘n FUN Aerospace Expo. No housing, accommodations or transportation is provided.

Rewards for semi-finalists:

  • Two free day of choice passes to SUN ‘n FUN 2020
  • SUN ‘n FUN keychain
  • Project: STRATOS T-Shirt

Rewards for finalists:

  • Possibility of a flight with one of the airshow performers
  • Participation in the USAF Thunderbird symposium
  • Camera with Memory Card
  • Four (4) free week-long passes to SUN ‘n FUN 2020
  • Meet and greet / photo opportunity with aerospace industry leaders
  • Project: STRATOS polo shirt and T-Shirt
  • SUN ‘n FUN Key Chain
  • Interviews on Florida Aviation Network and SUN ‘n FUN Radio

The Project: STRATOS expression of interest to participate is November 15, 2019 but don’t wait as you’ll miss some of the component experiences.

Contact stratos@flysnf.org today!!

A Call for Exhibitors

STEMtastic Youth Workshop
SUN ‘n FUN Aerospace Expo

March 31 – April 5, 2020
Lakeland, FL

Mission Statement: Engage, Educate and Accelerate the next generation of aerospace professionals.

You are invited!

Join us at the annual SUN ‘n FUN Aerospace Expo where proceeds fund Aviation Scholarships and Education Programs at the Aerospace Center for Excellence.

Our STEMtastic Youth Workshops are a sure-fire way to engage students of all ages in the areas of STEM education. Promote your exhibits, museums, attractions or educational opportunities provided at your site to a diverse audience of learners.

The annual SUN ‘n FUN Aerospace Expo attracts about 250,000 attendees. Year after year, it draws a loyal following of participants eager to learn!

Please join us by completing the Application below.

Email us at educate@flysnf.org if you have any questions.


Supported by Polk State College
SUN ‘n FUN offers tours to college, K-12 school, home school, church, family, and scouting groups. During these tours, students, teachers, and chaperones have the opportunity to see one of the largest aviation events in the world. Our interactive walking tour may include flying aircraft demonstrations, historic aircraft, forums, high-tech ultralight and light sport aircraft, warbird airplanes, a museum visit and more.

Destinations at the SUN ‘n FUN Aerospace Expo 2020 may include:

  • Piedmont Aerospace Lab is the first stop and check in as you arrive for your tour.
  • Our STEMtastic Youth Workshop Tent feature hands on learning environments which allow students to explore their STEM interests.
  • Paradise City, a grass runway and exhibitors showcasing Light Sport Aircraft (LSA), Ultralights, and Rotorcraft.
  • Vintage Aircraft featuring the rare and unusual from the Golden Age of aviation.
  • Warbird Aircraft shows the history of aviation in ways rarely found in a textbook.
  • Enjoy the Warbirds and honor the brave people who flew them.
  • Tour the Piedmont Aerospace Experience, a functioning Boeing 727-200 Airliner in the livery of Piedmont Airlines.
  • Aerospace Discovery at Florida Air Museum – watch the live broadcast of the Florida Aviation Network, experience hurricane force winds, experiment in a wind tunnel, or try your hand at HAM radio.

Important Registration and Payment Information

SUN ‘n FUN is offering group rates to educational organizations that wish to attend our annual fundraiser. Educational organizations include public and private schools, colleges as well as homeschooling groups.

Our group rates are available to groups of 15 or more. All group rates MUST be reserved and paid in advance


  • Pre-registration with advance ticket purchase is required.
  • Pre-registration forms and payment must be received by 03-17-20.
  • Before paying, please complete the form below.

Pricing Information

Discovery Tour (NO WRISTBANDS)

  • Group Rate $25.00


  • Child (6 and under) = FREE
  • Youth/Students (7-17) = $10.00
    • **OR students enrolled in a public/private or home school group who are 18 years of age
  • Adults (18 and up) = $25.00

If you have further questions please email StudentTours@flysnf.org

Support The Mission

The mission of the Aerospace Center for Excellence (ACE) is to “Engage, Educate, and Accelerate the Next Generation of Aerospace Professionals. The SUN ‘n FUN Aerospace Expo and dozens of other events year-round produce the majority of the revenue that goes into supporting this mission. By attending our events, you are helping us deliver top-quality, industry-leading STEM education and scholarship programs to thousands of young men and women each year. The opportunities that ACE provides give young people a competitive edge as they navigate their educational journey that can ultimately lead to a rewarding career in the world’s incredibly diverse and rapidly growing aerospace industry. You can help! Please click the links below to explore how you can share your knowledge and expertise as a volunteer in over 3500 available positions, become a patron of the Florida Air Museum, or donate to assist us financially. Regardless of how you assist, whether by attending our events, visiting the museum or donating financially, we sincerely appreciate your support!

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