Learn about our Opportunity Zones here!

101 W. Water Street Edenton NC 27932

The Friendly Skies Over Chowan County

When Mimi Reiheld and her husband were looking for the perfect place to retire, Chowan County’s beautiful waterfront location on the Albemarle Sound and welcoming community where they could meet other retirees were certainly attractive. 

But there was one requirement that Mimi placed at the top of her list, and she couldn’t find it just anywhere. She required easy access to see some of the most important people in her life – her grandkids. 

So, Mimi needed a place that would help her to visit her grandkids any time she wanted. 

She found it in Chowan County. 

“The airport was absolutely the reason my husband and I retired to Edenton,” she says emphatically. 

Mimi is an experienced pilot, having flown for more than 45 years.

Now, she volunteers as a member of the Town of Edenton’s Northeastern Regional Airport Commission here in Chowan County to help others find and utilize the airport she dearly cherishes. 

And she’s quite an ambassador.

Sit with Mimi for a few minutes, and she’ll quickly tell you, “The nicest people on earth run this place. They know what they’re doing. Getting a hangar here for my plane was a key consideration for moving here. We are lucky to have this airport in Edenton!”

The Northeastern Regional Airport is located on the site of a former U.S. Marine Corps Air Station, operating during World War II and active until it was decommissioned in the 1960s. 

Where once you might have seen PBJ-1 patrol bombers and F9F Panther fighter squadrons flying over Chowan County, today you’ll see a different variety of aircraft flying the friendly skies.

No one knows better than Harry Davis just how active and important the airport is to Chowan County. As a retired military and civilian pilot, he’s been managing the airport’s day-to-day operations since 2006. 

“We are the face of Edenton when people arrive here. When they arrive at the airport, we welcome them and help them in any way we can,” he explains. 

Harry knows the history and the ins and outs of the airport facilities in a way that only someone with a passion for both flying and Edenton could know. He’s the perfect Edentonian to welcome people to Chowan County!

With 6,000 feet of all-weather runway, “we have every approach that JFK has, both precision and non-precision, and an instrument landing system.” This allows pilots like Mimi to land here in Chowan County safely in good weather and bad.

But it’s not just personal aircraft or private pilots that are flying into Edenton. 

In fact, the Northeastern Regional Airport’s economic output is over $16 million dollars. 

Some of the revenue is generated by companies that use the airport to ship freight and refuel aircraft, but there are a wide variety of hangars, hosting 30 aircraft of different sizes, with even more on the way.

UPS, as well as many local businesses, have helped Northeastern Regional Airport become the sixth-largest freight-hauling airport in the state of North Carolina.

The airport is also utilized by Chowan Interfaith Disaster Relief, which has an office and stores emergency supplies there, and the N.C. Department of Transportation’s regional office. 

The College of The Albemarle uses an old runway for its Truck Driving Course, and another one hosts law enforcement driving courses, as well.

The Coast Guard uses the airport for helicopter practice, rescue training, and test flights. 

The Northeastern Regional Airport serves crop dusters, corporate jets, ECU medevac flights, and even Angel Flights.

The airport even offers a very busy full-service maintenance facility through JHSanders Jr Aviation Services, LLC, so that pilots and companies all over the East Coast have a convenient stop between Boston and Miami if they need any aircraft repairs.

From meeting corporate needs to emergency medical needs to agricultural needs, Northeastern Regional Airport has an immense impact on Chowan County and the surrounding region.

And it’s one of the important reasons folks like Mimi Reiheld and Harry Davis are proud to call Chowan County their homebase. 

If you’re ever in Edenton, why not visit and see the history preserved and showcased at the airport? Enjoy the airport’s convenience, service, and welcoming atmosphere. 

Or, better yet, fly the friendly skies over Chowan County and experience for yourself why so many people call this unique place their home!

More Articles to read