If you have ever wanted to enjoy am exhilarating skydiving experience, look no further, the excitement awaits at Skydive North Florida in DeFuniak Springs. Located just south of Paxton along CR 0605, owners Melanie and Jim Nipper welcome you to their facility.
Skydive North Florida has offerings for everyone. If you’re a first time skydiver, there’s no reason to be intimidated. Skydive North Florida offers tandem skydiving that enables individuals with no experience to jump in ‘tandem’ with one of their professional instructors.
If you have dreams of becoming a skydiver, Skydive North Florida offers training courses with experienced instructors to get you from the ground and into the sky with their Tandem Progression Accelerated Free Fall (AFF) training program. AFF is the most common skydiving training program in the world and they have incorporated it with three tandem skydives to allow for a smooth transition from jumping with an instructor to being on your own.
The Nippers have years of aeronautical experience under their belts. Jim enlisted in the Army at 17 in 1975 and became a US Army Golden Knight in 1980, and remained for 14 years. He was on both the Black and Gold demonstration teams then became a member of the Style and Accuracy competition team and would finish his GK career as the Team Sergeant. He has numerous National and World skydiving titles. Jim retired from the Army in 1996 as a Sergeant First Class. He is also a rigger, A&P/ IA mechanic, former commercial pilot and D-7693 license holder.
Melanie became a pilot in 1986, as an instrument flight instructor, crop duster, and flew cargo before flying for Gene Paul Thacker at Raeford Parachute Center where she met Jim. Melanie entered the Army as a warrant officer in 1993 and flew Blackhawks and King Airs. She embarked on four combat tours, active duty for 12 years and was in the National Guard and still serves in the Reserves with 22 years of service flying Blackhawks. Currently she flies a Kingair overseas as a contractor.
Skydive North Florida flies a PAC 750XL and a Cessna 182. The PAC 750XL rockets skydivers up to 13,500 feet in less than 15 minutes.
You will find a friendly family-oriented atmosphere at Skydive North Florida. The Nippers are professional and accommodating to visitors of all ages and skill levels. Most recently they hosted a fundraiser, Jump For the Rose, with proceeds going to help fund the non-profit organization that provides support for uninsured or underinsured women in the process of receiving cancer treatment, The event raised $1,358 for the worthy cause.
Most weekends you will find Don Cripps, 86, heading up for jumps. Cripps holds the World Guinness Book of Records as the oldest BASE jumper!
Skydive North Florida is located at 5138 Co. Hwy, 0605, Defuniak Springs, FL 32433. Click here for directions, or call 850-419-3580. For more information, go to skydivenorthflorida.com.