If you have a passion for all things aviation, you may want to plan a trip to see one of the many air shows that take place across the country every year. With so many air shows, it can be hard to choose which one you should attend. Luckily, we’ve rounded up a list of the must see air shows that you won’t want to miss out on:
EAA AirVenture OshKosh in Oshkosh, Wisconsin
This event, which takes place between July 24-30th, is packed full of different events that pilots will love, including The Blue Angels air show. The U.S. Navy Blue Angels is known as one of the premier military jet teams, so pilots from across the country will be lining up to see them take flight at this event.
The Blue Angels will be flying for your enjoyment during the day, but the fun doesn’t stop once the sun goes down. EAA AirVenture visitors also get to enjoy an air show at night, which features some of the world’s top pilots combined with breathtaking pyrotechnics that light up the sky. Each of the night air show concludes with a fireworks display that has been named one of the best in the Midwest, so this is one show that you definitely shouldn’t miss.
Arlington Fly-In in Arlington, Washington
This event runs from July 7th to 9th in Arlington, Washington. There are a number of different activities that you can partake in at the Arlington Fly-In, but many people look forward to the event’s annual air shows that take place on Friday evening and Saturday afternoon. Participants in this year’s air show have not been announced yet, but based on last year’s line-up, which included 10 different aircrafts, this is an air show that you will want to see.
Reno Air Races in Reno, Nevada
Plan a trip to Reno this September to see the air show that everyone in the aviation industry will be talking about. This year, the Texas Flying Legends Museum will be racing four planes and performing with six planes in the air show. Some of the aircrafts that you should expect to see include the B-25J, TBM Avenger, P-40K, FG-1D Corsair, and the P-51D, some of which were used in WWII and the Korean War.
But, that’s not all you should expect to see at the Reno Air Races this year. In addition to the planes from the Texas Flying Legends Museum, visitors at this event will also see the U.S. Air Force’s A-10 Thunderbolt II Heritage Team and the U.S. Marine Corps AV-8B aircraft. Brad Wursten will also be at the event as this year’s acrobatic performer. With a lineup like this, the Reno Air Races is sure to be an event that you will never forget.
Chicago Air and Water Show in Chicago, Illinois
The 59th annual Chicago Air and Water Show takes place on August 19th and 20th this year. This is the largest free air show in the country, so there are sure to be thousands of people in attendance to see the dazzling display in the air and on the water. This year, the U.S. Navy Blue Angels will be headlining the air show, so this gives you another chance to see these talented pilots take flight. The U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Team will also be at this event to impress audiences by jumping out of aircrafts flying 12,500 above the ground.
If you plan on attending this event, bring your own blanket, cooler, and chair and find a spot to watch the show along the lakefront from Fullerton to Oak Street.
The Vectren Dayton Air Show in Dayton, Ohio
This family-friendly event takes place on June 24th and 25th at the Dayton International Airport in Dayton, Ohio. The schedule is packed full of exciting air shows, including one that is headlined by the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds. Another highlight of this event is the U.S. Air Force F-35 Lightning II Heritage aircraft that will also take flight. This is the military’s newest fighter jet, and the only stealth, supersonic, multi-role fighter jet in the world, so many aviation aficionados are counting down the days until they get to see this aircraft in the air.
History buffs will also enjoy seeing the planes that WWII Navy pilots used during training. During this air show, the audience will get to see precision combat maneuvers that pilots were taught during WWII. In addition to these incredible maneuvers, the planes will also be leaving behind giant messages in the sky. The pilots are trained to fly about 250 feet away from each other so they can successfully write messages in the sky that measure about 1,000 feet in height and span across six to eight miles in length.
No air show would be complete without an acrobatic performance in the sky, which is why the Vectren Dayton Air Show wraps up with an unbelievable performance by Ken Rieder and Jon Thocker from Redline Airshows. These two pilots have been performing together for over a decade, so they know exactly what to do to please the crowds below.
Many of these events allow you to drive or fly in. If you plan on flying to one of these air shows, make sure that you polish your aircraft prior to taking off so you can show it off to other pilots at the event. Use Bright Work’s aviation approved metal polish to preserve the beauty of your aircraft. In just three steps, you can remove water spots, corrosion, and other damage from the surface of your plane. After a good polish, you can fly into one of these aircrafts with confidence knowing that your plane looks its very best.