• APR 13, 2012
  • WRITTEN BY: Aaron Thomas

We have heard of some pretty crazy ways to celebrate a birthday, but a woman from Ogden, Utah has really taken the biscuit. Marry Allen Harrison has set a new Guinness World Record for the oldest person to Paraglide to celebrate turning the ripe old age of 101!

The grandmother, with four generations of family below her, usually spends her time knitting caps for babies and crocheting bandages for leopards in India, but decided to take up Paragliding “on a whim” after her 75 year old son recently took up the sport as a hobby earlier in the year. Marry said “I didn’t want him to do something that I couldn’t do”, and choose to take the flight as part of her 101st birthday celebrations!

In an interview with the Mary compared the turbulence of the flight with life, saying “…life has its ups and downs, so I guess paragliding can have a little up and down too”. The inspirational OAP said she wasn’t afraid at all because she saw so many other people enjoying the experience without incident, by the time it was her turn to fly she was only excited!

Mary beat the previous record which was set by British women Margaret McKenzie McAlpine who went paragliding while on holiday in Cyprus in 2007, but Mary said she her main aim for the paraglide, (apart from having some fun!) was to encourage older generations to get out there and experience new things while they can and stay positive, because, as she put it: “Friends don’t like a grumpy person.”. It wasn’t until after her flight that her son realised his mother may have set a world record and contacted Guinness to confirm this and later told Mary said she found her new found fame “humorous”!

Photo and story source:

If you are inspired by this great great grandmothers daring birthday celebration and want to take to the skies in style, or maybe know and OAP with a taste for adventure, check out some of the experiences we have available:

Tandem Paragliding Experience (Winch)
Price £69
Paragliding is one of the closest ways to experience free flight as you get to soar through the skies and enjoy the silence of gliding! Throughout the 10 minute flight you will get to enjoy the views as the expert instructor pilots you safely to the ground making plenty of long swooping turns across the sky.

Tandem Hang Glide Aero Tow (South East)
Price £225
As the microlight tows to an altitude of around 2000ft, you will be able to appreciate the tranquil beauty of the earth from the sky! As you are released, the instructor will take control of the hang glider as well as letting you make some turns yourself and experience the ultimate feeling of flight!

Microlight Flight Kent
Price £69
Fly over the patchwork countryside of Kent in a Microlight and experience the bare bones of powered flight with just a wing, engine and small cockpit! Reach speeds of 70mph as you soar through the skies and get the chance to take the controls and fly the Microlight yourself.


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