United Fantasy Flight grants memorable Christmas experience - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Community Focus

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United Fantasy Flight grants memorable Christmas experience

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Posted: Saturday, December 28, 2013 4:45 am

Ahwatukee resident Bob Miller and his team recently finished with the United Fantasy Flight project, where they took students across the Valley on a flight to a Christmas experience they surely will remember for years to come.

The students took a 45-minute flight around Phoenix on Dec. 6, and when they landed at Sky Harbor International Airport, the 120 students were able to visit 20 different Christmas-themed stations that were designed to represent the North Pole.

Miller, who piloted the flight, said the event is a culmination of a year-long effort he and the United Fantasy Flight team did to support different schools in the Valley.

“We target two or three schools for the underprivileged every year, and we try to support them throughout the year financially by donating proceeds from different fundraisers for specific items that the school needs,” he said.

During this year’s United Fantasy Flight event, Schools across the Valley such as Children First Academy and Concordia Charter school were able to participate during the event.

The idea for the event was that each child was able to visit each of the 20 different stations, and students were shadowed by an Arizona State student athlete.

“This year we had 60 ASU student athletes that were the escorts,” Miller said. “It was a lot of fun.”

Each student athlete was designated two kids, and they made sure each kid was able to visit all 20 stations, he added.

Miller first got involved with the United Fantasy Flight when he was based at an airline in London in 1991.

“Someone came up with this idea for a fantasy flight as a one-time event. The airline literally gave us a 727 and a Shell credit card. We took 100 kids from a local orphanage and we flew them to this little town in Finland,” he said.

The first kids who experienced the United Fantasy Flight were able to have true Christmas experience visiting a reindeer farm and going on a reindeer sled ride throughout the forest.

After the fun time he shared with the children in the orphanage, Miller began organizing similar events to be held in the Valley.

Because having a flight from Phoenix to the North Pole would be too difficult, Miller and his team devised a plan to fly the children around Phoenix and create a Winter Wonderland at Sky Harbor when they landed.

For more information about the United Fantasy Flight organization, visit www.unitedfantasyflight.com.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-4903 or dochoa@ahwatukee.com.

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