* Georgian Bay Airways' new owner has big plans for the Parry Sound business
* New building to feature ice-cream shop, restaurant, flight-training facilities
Jun 29, 2018 by Stephannie Johnson Parry Sound North Star
PARRY SOUND — If the new building and landscaping along the waterfront is any indication, big changes are coming to Parry Sound’s Georgian Bay Airways.
In 2002, 30,000 Island Air was purchased by Keith and Nicole Saulnier and became Georgian Bay Airways. The business was sold to Jim Forsyth last spring.
Hitting the ground running, Forsyth has since demolished the original building and constructed a new one in its place, along with new landscaping.
“I built my cottage on Deep Bay ten years ago and every year I’ve fallen more in love with Parry Sound. I’m so excited to be part of the Georgian Bay Airways team and see our business grow and the waterfront continue to develop.” Georgian Bay Airways new owner Jim Forsyth
“it has been a great transition, and we are in the midst of completing a new office building/base,” said Andrea Hardy, Georgian Bay Airways general manager and office manager. “It will include an updated ice-cream shop, as well as a waterfront restaurant and flight-training facilities upstairs for our pilots and students.”
Forsyth’s vision is for Georgian Bay Airways to be a hub of activity for the community.
“The architectural design, along with updated landscaping, will hopefully be a draw for people to stop by to enjoy an ice cream or lunch/dinner by the water. We have added an amphibious Cessna 206 to our fleet, bringing it to four aircraft. The expansion of our building and fleet will increase jobs and allow for additional sightseeing flights and transportation services from Toronto, Hamilton and pretty much any local airport within the GTA.”
The expansion, Hardy said, also allows for partnerships with other local businesses, such as the Charles W. Stockey Centre for the Performing Arts, Bobby Orr Hall of Fame, Trestle Brewing Co., and Henry’s — to name a few.
“These partnerships will support local and existing businesses, as well as growth and development in the community. We offer aerial tours from our base, as well as direct from private cottages. Fly-and-dine flights to many restaurants such as Henry’s, Dockside, the Ridge, Swiss Country House and H & H Resort.”
As one of the top float-training facilities in Canada, Georgian Bay Airways hosts students from around the world, including those from Austria, Sri Lanka, Spain and Turkey.
“We have most of the previous staff from last season and have hired several new people to our crew. Jim, myself and everybody on staff are very excited about the coming flying season and anticipate a high volume of visitors.”
Forsyth said he’s thrilled to be a permanent part of the Parry Sound community.
“I built my cottage on Deep Bay 10 years ago, and every year I’ve fallen more in love with Parry Sound. I’m so excited to be part of the Georgian Bay Airways team and see our business grow and the waterfront continue to develop.”