Hand Launch Gliders (HLG) are a class of radio control thermal soaring sailplanes that are launched using just your arm! Competition classes limit HLG's to a maximum of 1.5m (59.05") span. Overhand, or javelin style throwing of HLG's has largely been replaced by Discus Launch Gliders (DLG) where the pilot throws the plane by holding onto the wingtip and spinning around throwing the plane much like a discus. This throwing technique was initially developed right here at SASS by Dick Barker in the early 2000's.
SASS hosts a number of HLG contests each year from March through October (see the SASS calendar for details). Anyone is welcome to participate in the contests, and we've found contests are a great way to learn about flying HLG's even if you are just starting out. HLG contestants are very friendly and always willing to help out the new pilots at the field.
Another opportunity to meet up with HLG pilots is at SASS's Wednesday afternoon/evening Fun-Fly held at 60-Acres Park in Redmond (see calendar for details). This drop-in event is well attended by SASS members, and often HLG pilots will show up and throw for fun, share tips and tricks and will even do something all HLG pilots love: All-Up Last-Down... this informal event is simply a 3-2-1 countdown, and then everyone there throws their plane, and the last plane back down on the ground wins!