SimVenture

SimVenture 2023: July 13-16, 2023

What is SimVenture?

PilotEdge is proud to present SimVenture Oshkosh for the fourth year in a row which will emulate the flight procedures associated with EAA’s famous AirVenture and allow pilots to fly into Oshkosh, with the real Oshkosh air traffic controllers, using a flight simulator.

Each year, over 10,000 aircraft flock to Oshkosh, Wisconsin’s Wittman Regional Airport for EAA’s AirVenture event. In order for Oshkosh’s airport to accommodate such an influx of air traffic throughout the week, EAA works closely with the FAA and the National Air Traffic Controllers Association to publish specific VFR arrival and departure procedures which pilots are required to follow.

These specific VFR procedures are published in a Notice (previously known as the NOTAM) and require pilots to conduct non-standard approaches and maneuvers into and out of the airport, while listening to fast-paced air traffic control and flying closer to other aircraft than most pilots have ever flown before.

The procedures for PilotEdge’s SimVenture event are nearly identical to EAA’s actual AirVenture event thus giving pilots an incredibly realistic experience of flying into and out of Oshkosh.

What do you need to Participate in SimVenture?

1. A working computer flight simulator (X-Plane 11, X-Plane 12, Prepar3D or Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020)
Need help getting set up with a flight simulator? Click here

2. An active PilotEdge membership (free trials work, too!)

3. A computer headset, or a way to use an aviation headset with your computer

4. An internet connection for your flight simulator’s computer

5. SimVenture Scenery for your Simulator
Provided by PilotEdge, free for all members, available about 1 week ahead of the event

SimVenture 2023 Schedule

PilotEdge will operate SimVenture Oshkosh 2023 for 3-4 hours on the following dates:

  • Thursday, July 13
  • Friday, July 14
  • Saturday, July 15
  • Sunday, July 16

Check back soon for specific event times each day.

Notice

Previously known as the NOTAM, the SimVenture Notice mirrors the actual AirVenture Notice as closely as possible. Despite the similarities between the real Notice and PilotEdge’s Notice, all users must download PilotEdge’s SimVenture Notice and be familiar with it prior to their SimVenture flight. Pilots are also encouraged to have the Notice accessible as a reference during their flight (either printed out or on a tablet/phone/second monitor). The Notice includes very important procedures which all pilots must follow, as well as many diagrams and pictures to help navigate effectively within the simulator.

Oshkosh Simulator Scenery

All SimVenture users are required to download, and use, custom Oshkosh scenery. The scenery is created by PilotEdge specifically for SimVenture 2023 and is free to PilotEdge users. Anyone with scenery from the 2020, 2021 or 2022 SimVentures shall remove and replace that scenery with the 2023 version as it has important updates. Need help getting the scenery set up within your sim? Click here

The scenery will be available for download approximately 1 week prior to the event. Follow @PilotEdgeATC on Instagram & Facebook for updates.

The Mission Behind the Event

Real World Pilots
Whether you have never flown to AirVenture in the past, or if you are an AirVenture veteran, the procedures to fly into Oshkosh during AirVenture week are some of the most non-standard that you’ll encounter as a VFR pilot. Since pilots typically only utilize these procedures once a year, everyone can benefit from a refresher. PilotEdge’s SimVenture will provide a means for real pilots to practice their arrival and departure just 1-2 weeks before AirVenture, using their flight simulator, while becoming comfortable and familiar with the Notice procedures. This will build confidence and familiarization which contributes to a safer real flight to AirVenture.

Flight Simulator Enthusiasts
Whether you have dreamed about flying into AirVenture for years, or you are just learning about it now for the first time, PilotEdge’s SimVenture event will be one of the most realistic and exciting flights you have ever experienced with your flight simulator. If you have always wanted to fly to Oshkosh, but have never had the opportunity, this will give you nearly the same great feeling.

Actual Air Traffic Controllers Provided by NATCA

You may notice the air traffic controllers for PilotEdge’s SimVenture Oshkosh event sound very much like those who actually work the real AirVenture. That is because they are the actual controllers! PilotEdge is working closely with the National Air Traffic Controllers Association for this event. By having the actual air traffic controllers volunteer for PilotEdge’s SimVenture event, pilots are certain to have a true-to-life experience as they will hear the same fast paced ATC that has become so unique to Oshkosh.

Win Real Prizes

We have a collection of generous sponsors who have donated a plethora of prizes! The more you fly, the better your chances are of winning. Pilots will receive 1 entry per landing and one entry per takeoff during SimVenture’s operating hours. Check back soon for the official rules and details of the contest.

Helpful Tips

Whether you’re a seasoned pilot who has flown the real Fisk Arrival into AirVenture many times, or a sim enthusiast who has never traveled to Wisconsin, this event is created for nearly everyone. However, all pilots shall be prepared before flying in this event by following these guidelines:

  • Read and fully understand the Notice (Questions? Ask us on Discord)
  • Be able to comfortably takeoff, fly and land your airplane in the simulator (the event is not the time to test out your new flight simulator)
  • Be able to understand and comply with ATC instructions
  • Test the scenery to be sure you installed it properly BEFORE logging on to fly in the event. You can do this by loading up at Oshkosh before the event. If you see the colored dots on the runways and your simulator doesn’t give you any error messages, you can assume it is working properly.
  • Conduct a self-radio check on 123.45 prior to departure. Details on this self-check are in the NOTAM
  • Have an adequate frame rate to prevent you from moving slower than you should. As long as your simulator isn’t noticeable jumpy or slow, you should be okay (20 FPS minimum- adjust your graphics settings accordingly).
  • Dedicate sufficient time to participate in this event. This event may require you to hold or circle back around. Just one approach into Oshkosh could take you upwards of 1 hour during busy periods. Allow yourself plenty of time so there is no need to feel rushed.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is PilotEdge?
PilotEdge is an online network which links flight simulators together in one big virtual world. Within the virtual world, air traffic controllers (real people, never automated) work on the other side of the mic giving pilots ATC services which mirror a real-world experience. Pilots connected to PilotEdge will hear and see other pilots while communicating with air traffic control during their flights.

What do I need in order to participate?
To participate in the event, you will need a flight simulator (MSFS2020, Prepar3D, X-Plane 11, or X-Plane 12), an internet connection and computer headset. Additionally, you will need an active PilotEdge account which will also allow you to download the Notice and required custom scenery.
Note: Prepar3D users must email kevin[at]pilotedge.net for specific instructions and permission prior to participating in the event.

How many times can I fly into/out of Oshkosh?
Pilots may fly as many times as they’d like during the published event times. However, pilots must fly full flights (beginning somewhere on the ground) and are not allowed to begin their flight while airborne. Pilots may depart from any airport (including OSH) and follow the Notice to join the VFR arrival procedure.

Will this be exactly like the real Arrival into Oshkosh?
We have worked very hard to mirror this event to the actual AirVenture. Not only will this provide a realistic simulation, but pilots can use this event to, unofficially, familiarize themselves with the Oshkosh arrival procedures if they intend on making the real-world flight to AirVenture. While the majority of SimVenture’s procedures are derived from the actual AirVenture Notice, there are a few procedures specific to our simulated event. These differences are all listed in the Notice so pilots can be aware of what is different if using SimVenture as a familiarization tool for AirVenture.

Further Questions?

Visit our Discord chat server or reach out to us on social media @pilotedgeatc

History of SimVenture

The first SimVenture was created by PilotEdge and hosted in July of 2020. While the initial concept was to prepare people to fly into AirVenture, the pandemic forced a pivot to more of a nostalgic approach to allow pilots to engage in an exciting aviation-related activity from the safety of their home flight simulators.

Throughout the course of the SimVenture 2020 event, there were over 1,000 arrivals into Oshkosh on the PilotEdge network.

Beginning in 2021, the event took more of a training approach as pilots could use SimVenture to prepare to fly to AirVenture just a week later. 2021 and 2022 both saw well over 1,000 arrivals throughout the event.

Flying Magazine – AirVenture Air Traffic Went Virtual This Year

Aviation International News (AIN) – SimVenture Flyers Get a Taste of Oshkosh Operations

AVweb – You Didn’t Fly to OSH, But 1000 Virtual Pilots Did

Pilot und Flugzeug – Cancel Culture 2020: AirVenture goes – SimVenture comes English version PDF German version PDF

Disclaimer

PilotEdge’s SimVenture event, the PilotEdge SimVenture Notice and any other material provided by PilotEdge regarding SimVenture is for flight simulator purposes only. None of the material or guidance shall be used for real world flight or navigation. Refer to EAA’s official Notice when actually flying to AirVenture.