What’s in a Name – Volaré Products

Did you ever wonder about my business name, Volaré Products?  Where did I get it?  What does it mean?  How in the world do you pronounce it?  Well, I will explain.

This morning, while doing research, I stumbled across the FAC Newsletter Archive, compiled by Lincoln Ross. (What an effort he has done!)  I scrolled and found mention of the Durham Mystery Plan that I did (Tom Nallen I design) that was in the newsletter.  He made the following comment: “…Volare Products (couldn’t he have called his company something else? That car was a traumatic memory, but what did I expect for $400? How does George expect a model airplane burdened with fine “Corinthian” leather to fly well?)

Who doesn’t remember Ricardo Montelban’s commercial?  It is a cultural classic!  But – OOPS! – that was for the Chrysler Cordoba, not the Plymouth Volare.  Of course, Lincoln’s comment is tongue-in-cheek (I think?), but it got me to thinking about the name and why it is difficult for people?

First, the pronunciation.  It seems that nearly everyone mispronounces this – and I don’t know why. The most grating (and somewhat common) mispronunciation I get is “vol-AIR” – what?  Well, I guess it follows the “rules of English pronunciation” with the long vowel sound that precedes the silent E – but it is clearly wrong.  I don’t know how anyone that says it that way feels that the fingernails-on-a-chalkboard sound is right.

Those of us of a certain age – and even older – will remember the song “Volare” (or “Nel blu dipinto di blu”) from the late 50s, 60s, and 70s.  I grew up near Toledo, Ohio and we listened to WJR out of Detroit.  I thought (at the time) it was pop music, but it was really much more staid.  That song would occasionally play and it is catchy.  That pronunciation is “vo-LAR-ay” – it is Italian and means “to fly” (now we are getting closer to why I picked the name).  While this is not the correct pronunciation of my business name – it is the one that I use.  It is also the way the Plymouth car name is pronounced (so people should know?)  By the way, here is Dean Martin singing “Volare”.

The last pronunciation – and the correct one – comes from Spanish.  My wife is a native Spanish speaker and the correct pronunciation of volaré is “vo-la-REY”.  And here you will see why THIS word is the name of my business (thank you Google Translate):

You see, long before I purchased the parts business, I had designed my own FAC-based Free Flight model airplane plans.  I have dozens and dozens of designs that I have drawn up or started to draw, but only have ever offered a few for sale.  I only offer plans – and now kits – of models that have been successfully built and flown to FAC-minimum flight times – 20 seconds or more.   My products must be able to fly.

from 1997 or so

from 2003 – during my model airplane drought

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2 Responses to What’s in a Name – Volaré Products

  1. Sky Mayo says:

    Hey My Friend,

    Thanks for taking the time from your busy day for the write up.
    Most interesting.

    Sky

  2. Scott Richlen says:

    So, years ago I go into Tower Records store and ask the teenage clerk “Do you have “The Best of Dean Martin” on CD? I’d like to buy it.”

    His response: “Why?”

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