Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Coronado Veteran Takes Business to New Heights with iFLY Oceanside

The Blomsness Family, Photo Courtesy of Melissa Blomsness

Coronado residents Melissa and Robert Blomsness own an indoor skydiving center called iFLY Oceanside. Rob is a combat Navy SEAL sniper who trained in a wind tunnel while in the Navy. When Rob finished his Navy contract, he set out to own his very own tunnel. His goal was to continue to be around the Navy community through military contracts as well as to entertain families throughout the county.

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Rob Blomsness, Photo Courtesy of Melissa Blomsness

Rob was first introduced to Coronado during his BUD/S training, where he spent time with his team in wind tunnels to practice jumping out of planes. After completing his contract with the Navy, he looked at his life and evaluated his next steps. For him, this meant making the transition to start a family and move on from the military to being a business owner.

Owning iFLY Oceanside allowed Rob to become the business owner he envisioned while still being around his military family. “This is great for the military and guys going through BUD/S. They learn to get comfortable first, then they add in jumping with weapons, rucksacks, and fake parachutes,” Rob explains. He also adds that this gives them time to learn best body positions and makes it safer for them when they jump outside.

Building iFLY, Photo Courtesy of Melissa Blomsness

While the military is one of their biggest clients, iFLY is an activity for everyone. Rob shares, “this is really neat for families. We have had three generations fly together. There are not a lot of activities you can do for a thrill for everyone.” Age requirements are just three years old and up!

Another popular group are skydivers. Rob explains, “they typically have 35-55 seconds for freefalling when they skydive and can only accomplish 5-6 jumps in one day. The wind tunnel provides 30 minutes straight for them to practice.”

iFLY also gives customers the opportunity to see the world through VR headsets. The special helmet allows users to choose between five experiences. The two most popular are the drop zone next to the Oceanside tunnel and the Swiss Alps. Rob shares, “with the Swiss Alps, you can see the snow and you feel the cold of the wind tunnel,” making it a total body experience.

After three years of owning iFLY, the business was impacted in March due to the Coronavirus. Rob shares, “we were shut down in March, then reopened in June, and modified in July.” Throughout all of these changes, Rob remarks that he is fortunate that his business is inherently more sterile than other environments. “We moved to smaller group sizes and sanitized heavily, but the wind tunnel already percolates the air 20x faster than being outside and the suits and helmets are PPE.”

Rob is proud to have a veteran-owned and local family business. Schedule your flight at iFLY Oceanside.

iFLY Oceanside, Photo Courtesy of Melissa Blomsness

iFLY Oceanside, 3178 Vista Way, Oceanside, CA 92056 • 760-606-4359

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Alyssa K. Burns
Alyssa is a graduate of Coronado High School and was in the founding broadcast journalism class at CHS. She earned her BA in Communication from CSU East Bay and completed her MBA from CSU San Marcos. Her passion for writing and interest in the behind the scenes of business, leads her to write frequently about Coronado businesses. You can find Alyssa walking around the ferry landing with her husband and shih-tzu terrier or enjoying a cup of coffee at one of Coronado's favorite cafes.Have a story for The Coronado Times to cover? Send news tips or story ideas to: manager@coronadotimes.com


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