San Marcos Now 5th Spaceland DZ

by Eric Boyd
by Eric Boyd

The popular business Skydive San Marcos, which has been serving the Austin/San Antonio areas of Texas for more than 30 years, will soon become the fifth member of the growing Skydive Spaceland brand.

“The former owners of Skydive San Marcos, Paul and Jen Illingworth, have done a fantastic job of building a solid business and loyal following in the Austin/San Antonio areas,” said Spaceland’s owner/founder Steve Boyd, who has owned and operated skydiving centers for more than 40 years. “We are excited to have this rock-solid foundation on which to expand the Spaceland brand into Central Texas.”

Skydive San Marcos will become Spaceland San Marcos on Sept. 15, 2018. — by Christy West
Skydive San Marcos will become Spaceland San Marcos on Sept. 15, 2018. — by Christy West

“We are pleased to support this transition and we look forward to Spaceland San Marcos becoming the premier skydiving facility in Texas,” said Paul and Jen Illingworth.

Skydive Spaceland, now in its 18th year of business, also operates major skydiving centers in the Houston and Dallas/Fort Worth areas of Texas, as well as South Florida and Atlanta, Georgia. The acquisition of Skydive San Marcos will give Spaceland a presence in all of Texas’ major metro areas.

Spaceland San Marcos will offer the same professional skydiving experience, turbine aircraft, and high-quality facilities Skydive Spaceland is known for at its other locations. Skydive Spaceland expects to take over operations on September 15.

Leading the Spaceland San Marcos team as operations manager will be world-champion skydiver/instructor Thomas Hughes, who brings 20 years of skydiving and competition experience to the table.

Thomas Hughes will take over as operations manager of Spaceland San Marcos. — by Christy West
Thomas Hughes will take over as operations manager of Spaceland San Marcos. — by Christy West

“After spending almost two decades skydiving, I’m very excited to transition to the management team at Skydive Spaceland San Marcos,” said Hughes. “I hope to bring my years of knowledge, teamwork, and pursuit of excellence to the team to build the best student training facility and the best place to fun jump around.”

“Thomas is the perfect person to raise the bar high for Spaceland San Marcos,” said Boyd.

Plans for future facility updates (likely starting in 2019) include:

  • Expansion of the main building to increase space for parachute packing and student instruction
  • Expanded restroom facilities
  • Addition of a full-service restaurant
  • Additional parking
  • Expanded spectator area
  • Possibly a detached bunkhouse

Stay tuned to the Spaceland San Marcos social media channels after Sept. 15 for more updates!

Skydiver FAQ

What’s in store for the former Skydive San Marcos following this ownership change?

A lot of business as usual at first, followed by some operational changes such as changing to a 7-day-a-week skydiving center. There will also be a lot of facility improvements that will likely start in late 2018/2019.

How does this affect other Spaceland locations?

Not much… but we expect Skydive San Marcos and Skydive Spaceland staff to learn from each other, bringing improvement to all of our drop zones.

Will San Marcos be included in the Spaceland unlimited jump package?

Yes!!! This gives our unlimited jump pass holders another major drop zone at which they can use the pass! It’s not too late to buy the pass, which covers your lift tickets at all current and future Spaceland drop zones through the end of the calendar year. Get the unlimited jump pass

Will San Marcos jump prices change?

In some cases, yes, but not generally a lot. See Spaceland rates

I have money on account at Skydive San Marcos. How will that be handled with the ownership change?

Great news… any money you have on account at Skydive San Marcos will be honored by Skydive Spaceland!

What aircraft will Spaceland San Marcos fly?

Much of the time, the Super Caravan plus a Super Otter. You’re welcome. :p

I’m a student partway through the training program at Skydive San Marcos. How will this affect my training? I’ve heard you have a different training program.

First of all, we’ll be open 7 days a week soon, which will give you more opportunities to train when the weather is good! This also allows you to achieve your license in as little as a week. Learn more about getting licensed in a week

As for the curriculum, our Skydiver Training Program is a bit different than the AFF program, and transitional training for partly trained students will be handled on a case-by-case basis. We will transition you to our program as inexpensively as possible. Please email us with any questions!

I’ve worked a lot with Joe Instructor. Will he still work there?

In most cases, yes! Skydive San Marcos employed a lot of great staff, instructors included, and most will continue working for Skydive Spaceland San Marcos.

Will major Skydive San Marcos events still go on?

Yes! We want to keep everything that has made Skydive San Marcos great and super fun, such as the $99 Jump Your A$$ off Weekend! Please stay tuned to our website events calendar and Facebook for event updates!

What will team training rates be under the new management?

$18 per slot (including videographer slots) for all registered competitors.

This article was originally published on skydivemag