Celebrating our 37th April Fool’s Day

Cape Air celebrates 37 years of seaplane charter service.

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Today is Shoreline Aviation’s 37th anniversary. John Kelly, founder of the company has always said that April Fool’s Day is the appropriate time to start an aviation company. Draw your own conclusions! When asked why he decided to start Shoreline, he told me he had just wanted to have a summer job that was interesting and fun and would get him out of New York City to the beaches and islands of New England.  From there it took off, literally and figuratively. The summer job has lasted a lifetime.

That first summer was spent flying customers to East Hampton, Block Island, Newport, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket in four or six seat airplanes. A year later we began flying seaplanes out of New York City. Believe or not, we still fly some of those same customers who were with us in the beginning. In some cases we’ve watched our customers’ children grow up and become customers on their own. We really cherish these long term relationships as they have helped sustain us even in the lean years. We’re now looking forward to the third generation!

Over the years we’ve added quite a few new routes. After 9/11 New York City’s East River seaplane base was shut down for months. At that point Shoreline needed to find a way to survive.  A decision was made to take the seaplanes south. Since then we have established SeaBird Air in The Bahamas and what we refer to as Shoreline Aviation Caribbean in the U.S. and British Virgin Islands. We can now fly to a number of islands in the Eastern Caribbean. Shoreline’s pilots can spend half their time in the sunny, warm Northeast and the other half in the sunny, warm Caribbean. What could be better?  

After 37 years, John Kelly’s summertime avocation has turned into a lifetime gig. The classically trained musician put away his tuxes, his tails, and his trombones (there are reportedly eleven of them over his garage) and continues to fly his beloved seaplanes. It’s been a great ride!

Happy travels-

Shoreline Aviation – Celebrating 37 years of charter services in New England, New York and The Hamptons!

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