MELBOURNE BEACH — A new area skydiving business is giving customers an opportunity to see extraordinary, and unique, views of Melbourne Beach.
Skydive Melbourne Beach, which drop zone manager Jeff Holmstock says has taken three years of planning, has begun operations with planes taking off from Melbourne International Airport that allow skydivers to land at an area of the beach at the Sand on the Beach restaurant, located at 1005 Atlantic St.
“It’s not just a cool place to skydive, it’s an extreme bucket list kind of opportunity,” said Mr. Holmstock. “We are one of only two drop zones in the southeast, we’re the only one south of the Carolinas that lands on the Atlantic beach.”
Currently, the company offers Friday runs at sunset. They also are open all day Saturday and Sunday beginning at 8:30 a.m. until the last load or sunset.
“If you think sunsets and sunrises are beautiful, when you’re two miles up, it’s almost like everything’s in high resolution,” said Mr. Holmstock, who noted that the sunrises and sunsets look like they’re “painted in orange and yellow” from that perspective.
The company offers tandem jumping for those who are inexperienced and also have “fun jumps” available for those who are more experienced and licensed, said Mr. Holmstock, who indicated that he believes skydiving is “something that is one of the most misperceived activities that you can do.”
“We want to give people an accurate perception of skydiving and that accurate perception really is, if you’ve ever dreamed of what it’s like to fly around the sky like Superman or Wonder Woman, that is exactly what skydiving is like,” Mr. Holmstock said. “There’s never any sensation of falling even when you exit the plane because of your forward momentum. You don’t get a drop, it’s a hill. The plane is moving forward at approximately 80 to 90 mph and so are you but when you step off the plane, you’re still moving forward. It’s a gradual transition from horizontal to vertical so you never get that stomach in your throat feeling like a rollercoaster. That’s something hard to convey to people.”
Safety is clearly at the forefront of what the company does. According to the company’s website, skydivemelbournebeach.com, the staff has conducted “more than 150,000 military, special ops and recreational skydives between them.”
Additionally, it’s noted that the “all Skydive Melbourne Beach tandems instructors are United States Parachute Association certified and rated.” It’s also stated that all equipment “at Skydive Melbourne Beach incorporates an onboard activation computer called an AAD that can safely take over chute deployment.”
Additionally, Mr. Holmstock indicated that Skydive Melbourne Beach has also partnered with a local entity to make some people’s wishes come true as well.
“I am so proud that we are now an official partner and program provider with Hospice of Health First which is one of the largest hospice providers in the state,” Mr. Holmstock added. “We take hospice patients and we will fulfill their bucket (list) wish.”
Those interested in making reservations to skydive can do so at 321-977-5097 with Mr. Holmstock strongly recommending prospective skydivers to call ahead. For more information, visit www.skydivemelbournebeach.com