Iowa’s largest skydiving club is marking its 30th anniversary today (Friday) in an appropriate manner. Four members of the Des Moines Skydivers Group plan to make 30 skydives — each. Club president Pat Rounds says the day of ups-and-downs will start at 8 A-M. Using a couple of airplanes, they’ll climb in and get to altitude as quickly as possible, jump out, fly down, land, get a new parachute then climb back into another plane and repeat the process. Rounds says they’ll be jumping from altitudes somewhere between 35-hundred and nine-thousand feet. He hopes to be doing four skydives every hour. Rounds says skydiving is an experience everyone should have — at least once. Rounds says it’s an exhilaration and is “the most fun you can have with your clothes on” which he sums up as being a contest between “God and his gravity versus us and our parachutes and He usually lets us win.” Rounds says skydiving is very safe and is all simply a matter of physics. The ambitious goal of 30 jumps today is, in a word, lofty, but Rounds says they’ll accomplish it, though it may take up to 12 hours. The most he’s done in a day before is 13, though he has more than 13-hundred jumps logged. Rounds says he’s not worried about getting forgetful late this afternoon after he’s already made perhaps 28 skydives or so. Skydiving is equipment dependent, he says, with routines to make sure all of the equipment is checked and re-checked before they jump. He says there’s “no chance of us leaving our parachutes on the ground.” Perhaps appropriately, Rounds is C-E-O of an insurance company, though it’s not life insurance. He runs Petroleum Marketers Mutual Insurance Company, based in Waukee.
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