Northeast Ohio Electric Festival (NEF) 2016

Written by Jeff Troy Akron’s Northeast Ohio Electric Festival Event coverage Photos by Jeff Troy As seen in the summer 2016 issue of Park Pilot.

The University of Akron Stile Athletics Field House was the site of the 2016 NEF (Northeast Ohio Electric Festival), produced by Marc Stermer of Rabid Models and the Ohio Indoor RC Flyers. Every year in March, three days of racetrack-style flying are offered, along with several fun-packed events that include Musical Airplanes, Combat, Pylon Racing, and Carrier Landing.
The University of Akron Stile Athletics Field House is an indoor football field with a 100-yard length and a high ceiling. Stile is an ideal venue for indoor flight.

This smiling hero of another successful NEF event is Marc Stermer. Marc is the owner of Rabid Models “Foamin’ at the Mouth,” and promoter of the annual Northeast Ohio Electric Festival. The giant B-17 Flying Fortress bombers from Rabid Models caused a lot of excitement with pilots and spectators.

NEF 2016 vendors included Air Hobby, AMA, Lazertoyz, Luke’s RC Planes, Model Plane Foam, One-Sheet Kits, Rabid Models, RC Plane Wear, TailSpin Hobbies, and West Michigan Park Flyers.

One of the event’s most awe-inspiring highlights is the team selection for the FAI F3P World Championship for Indoor Aerobatic Model Aircraft. The top finishers in this event earned a spot on the US team for the competition, which will take place in France in 2017.
The four F3P pilots who qualified at NEF for the 2017 F3P World Championship in France. They are (L-R) Dave Lockhart, third; Devon McGrath, second; RJ Gritter, first; and Joseph Szczur, Junior.

Indoor Electric Pattern airplanes perform the complex F3P maneuver schedule at extremely low speeds. These graceful models typically weigh 60 to 70 grams, and perform as though they weigh nothing at all.

My flying buddy, Tom Kozel, and I arrived at the Stile Athletics Field House on Friday afternoon, March 18. We checked in and loaded our tables with indoor RC models of every description—from modified, vintage stick-and-tissue kits to out-of-the-box RTFs from E-flite (, Flyzone (, and others. The huge venue was jammed with similar models from table to table, and open flying was underway by late afternoon.
Nathan Chernisky was the youngest active pilot at the event. Nathan flew an assortment of models, including a Night Vapor from the ParkZone division of Horizon Hobby.

Show personnel kept the flightline running smoothly, and the pattern kept incidents to a minimum. This fun-filled event is sponsored by the Academy of Model Aeronautics (, Flite Test (, Horizon Hobby (, Lazertoyz (, Luke’s RC Planes (, Mentor Area Radio Control Society (, and West Michigan Park Flyers (
Pilots’ briefings preceded each of the NEF fun-fly events, including the Micro/Ultralight Carrier mission flown on Saturday and Sunday mornings. All of these events were competently organized and big fun.

Combat rules? All up at once, and no more than a 1,000 mAh LiPo battery is allowed. No ribbons—just knock the other airplanes out of the air. Last one flying wins.

The event also raised money for Wounded Warrior Project. Be sure to check for next year’s dates on the NEF website ( Jeff Troy

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