Terre Haute Airshow 2018 – Ryan Sundheimer
Terre Haute Airshow 2018 – David Jacobson
Also be sure to check out our video playlist from the event!
As our 13th year of airshow coverage comes to a close, we’re taking a look back at another awesome season of aviation and airshows!
Warbirds – aircraft that are no longer in military service – are one of the most popular searches across all of our channels, and it’s easy to see why. Many people have strong emotional connections to these aircraft, maybe due to a relative who flew one or just as a touchstone to history. Warbirds are almost by definition quite rare, and we are glad to share the sights and sounds of these vintage beasts! Here are ten of our favorite warbird videos from 2018!
Listen to this exceptionally rare pair get the props going on their high speed pass in Oshkosh! A unique – and chilling – sound! One of the aircraft lost a wheel on landing, but was otherwise undamaged.
Randy Ball flies what may be the perfect warbird routine – a mix of aerobatics, high speed passes, and photo passes. He knows what the crowd likes, and it’s even more beautiful at dusk!
One of the coolest air to air flights we did all year was this rare opportunity to hang out the open door of a Beech 18 with five rare warbirds flying off the wing!
We work hard to film from spots with no music or narrators blasting over the PA, and this year our friends at the Terre Haute Airshow helped us out with amazing access to the hot ramp. Enjoy this compilation of warbirds, including a B-17 Flying Fortress, B-25 Mitchell, P-51 Mustang, and more – watch for them to blast right overhead on their photo passes!
They’re warbirds in two different senses – T-6 Texans and BT-13 Valiants masquerading as Japanese Zeros, Vals, and Kates – and we had a great time getting attacked by them while sitting in the pyro field during this performance by the Tora Tora Tora group!
This video has less action than most, but it’s also one of the most informative. Dave Hadfield, who flies a number of warbirds, was nice enough to show us around the Mike Potter Collection’s Supermarine Spitfire Mk. IX on the ground at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh. Learn everything you’ve ever wanted to know about preflighting a Spitfire! Dave also shared some cockpit footage with us – check back for that when we list our 2018 on-board videos!
Here’s the end result of the Spitfire preflight – some spectacular flybys lit up by the late afternoon sun. Oshkosh helped mark the 100th anniversary of the Royal Air Force with the Spitfire, a de Havilland Chipmunk, and a BAC Jet Provost.
This nimble F-5 Freedom Fighter showed off just after sunset at the America’s Freedom Fest airshow in Goshen, IN. We’ll also have cockpit footage from this jet coming up with other on-board videos!
Thanks to our friends at This Is Flight, we were able to share a look of this excellent and rare formation flown by the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight over in the UK which includes one of only two flying Avro Lancasters in the world!
Jet Warbird Day at EAA AirVenture means a sky full of jets. This video is part 2 of our footage – you can see part 1 here – and includes F-86 Sabres, the F-5 Freedom Fighter mentioned above, and the only flyby all week from the Gloster Meteor that just came to the United States this year. The Meteor and missing man formation before it were flown as a tribute to Marty Tibbitts, who was killed in a crash while practicing for the show.
Remember to subscribe to our Youtube channel for even more warbird videos – we’re adding more all the time!
On Friday, August 25th, the eye of Hurricane Harvey, a strong category 4 hurricane with winds of 140 mph, made landfall near Rockport, TX. Over the next week, the center of Harvey would sit and spin over Texas, dropping 40-50 inches of rain! This amount of rain resulted in catastrophic and life threatening flooding across southeast Texas, including the Beaumont, TX area.
Beaumont sits about 1 hour and 15 minutes to the east of the Houston Metro. When Harvey’s rains hit, the town’s 118,000+ people were devastated. While most of the national media’s attention was on the Houston Metro, other areas in Texas were also struggling.
In Georgetown, TX, located outside of Austin, citizens started gathering supplies. A call went out for general aviation aircraft and pilots in the area to help take supplies down to Beaumont. The Commemorative Air Forces’s Highland Lakes Squadron, with their Douglas C-47 “Bluebonnet Belle”, answered that call.
The C-47 has a history of transporting important cargo. During World War II, the platform was used to carry jeeps, troops, or up to 6,000 pounds of other cargo. It was used by every branch of the US military and all of the major allied powers.
When Texas needed it, the C-47 stepped back into service – more than 70 years after the war that made the type famous. The cabin was loaded with diapers, food, and water before the aircraft launched on the hour and a half trip from Georgetown to Beaumont.
In a post on the Commemorative Air Force Facebook page, the CAF said, “When the Texas National Guard showed up with their Deuce and a half truck, we knew we had brought supplies to the right place. A troop of soldiers descended on the C-47 unloading box after box directly onto the military truck. This was only the first load of supplies and so long as there is a need the CAF is planning to help.”
The C-47 wasn’t the only aircraft that helped with Harvey relief. The B-25 Mitchell “Devil Dog”, also a CAF aircraft, transported supplies to impacted areas as well. These including, rather fittingly, 500 pounds of dog food for displaced pets.
Well done by these resilient old airframes and the volunteers that support, maintain, and fly them!
2017 will forever be known as the “Year of the Bombers” at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh – and with good reason! With the memories of last week’s spectacle of aviation still fresh in our minds, the AirshowStuff.com crew is proud to present this video containing all of the major bombers that made an appearance at #OSH17. This video has something for every lover of the mud movers, from the only two flying B-29 Superfortresses “Fifi” and “Doc”, to the high-tech B-1B Lancer and B-2 Spirit. And let’s not forget the venerable workhorse of the bomber fleet, the B-52 Stratofortress.
Visitors were treated to multiple flybys, including a rare Bomber Triad flyover that included all three current USAF bombers in formation, plus static displays of the B-1B, the B-52, a re-enactment of the infamous Doolittle Raid including twelve B-25 Mitchell bombers, and both flyable B-29 Superfortresses on the ground and in the air. This video is sure to get your blood pumping and your adrenaline flowing. You’ll hear the scream of the eight Pratt and Whitney TF33 engines of the mighty B-52 as it roars overhead, and you’ll feel the rumble in your chest from the eight Wright Cyclone radial engines of both B-29s as they pass by. Check out the afterburner action of the B-1B as it rolls in at high speed with wings swept, heading straight for you! And who could forget the stealthy B-2 Spirit as it gracefully sweeps by, prominent bat-wing design on full display. This video has just about everything a bomber fan could love so sit down, strap in, and set your video player to 1080p so you can truly enjoy this awesome display of sheer firepower!
Be sure to subscribe to the AirshowStuffVideos channel on YouTube for more great videos!
The Texas Flying Legends Museum in Houston, TX owns an impressive collection of WWII-era warbirds, and they put on an amazing display last year at AirVenture! With aircraft ranging from P-51 Mustangs to a British Spitfire to the B-25 Mitchell, this video has some serious warbird punch, including some excellent pyro. Check out this video where you get to see legends like the Mitchell, Mustang, Spitfire, Corsair, Wildcat, and Warhawk perform pass after pass. Strafing, bombing, diving, and climbing as they put on a show for the ages.
You’ll get to see a rare formation of the aircraft flying overhead. You’ll hear the beautiful sound of the Merlin engines of the Mustang along with the deep and throaty roar of the Mitchell as it passes before you with the bomb bay doors open. You’ll get the full effect of the machine gun chatter as the fighters pass by, and you can almost feel the heat from the explosions as they burst below these beautiful aircraft. So if you enjoy warbirds, and who doesn’t really, then turn up the volume and enjoy this awesome video!
Be sure to browse the AirshowStuffVideos channel on YouTube for more great videos.
The Gathering of Warbirds in Waukesha, WI will return this month! This one day event is organized by the Wisconsin Wing of the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) and will be held on Saturday, May 27th. This is a relaxed, smaller event where you can wander the ramp to get up close and personal with a wide variety of aircraft, many based at the airport. Last year featured types from Stearman biplanes to T-6 Texans to a P-51 Mustang and P-40 Warhawk – you can see them all in our Gathering of Warbirds 2016 photo gallery.
The event runs from 10am to 4pm, and flying is expected sporadically throughout the day. It is not an airshow, and there are no designated performances, but the pilots will be eager to do some flybys. Highlights this year include the B-25 Mitchell bomber “Miss Mitchell”, Brad Deckert’s TBM Avenger, and the MiG-17 Fresco and F-86 Sabre from our friends at MiG Alley Airshows. Organizers are hopeful that the Royal Canadian Air Force will bring in a C-130 Hercules for static display as well.
Those wanting to take part in the flying can purchase rides in the B-25 bomber or a BT-13 trainer aircraft. More details are available on the Gathering of Warbirds website.
From the event’s website:
Airplanes dating back to World War II and the Korean War will be in the air over Waukesha and on the ground at the Waukesha County Airport.
This second annual Gathering of Warbirds will honor veterans and the 75th Anniversary of the 1942 Doolittle Raid on Tokyo, which was the first strike to hit the Japanese home islands in World War II.
The Gathering of Warbirds is a family-friendly event featuring historic and modern military aircraft, aircraft tours and rides, and education activities for all ages. It’s aimed at anyone who enjoys seeing historic and modern military aircraft and fighter jets fly throughout the day.
Aircraft presentations and tours will provide hands-on opportunities for families and aviation history buffs alike. Miss Mitchell, a restored B-25 Mitchell and the type of aircraft used in the Doolittle Raid, will be at the event and will offer tours and flight experiences. The event will also honor veterans with a free hat presented to the first 200 veterans who attend.
Entrance fee is $15 per vehicle (cash only), which includes entrance for everyone in the vehicle. Park in Waukesha County Expo Center. Handicap parking will be available. Please no pets or smoking on the grounds of the event.
Eleven B-25 Mitchells roared over the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, OH on Tuesday in an incredible tribute to the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders. The flyover came 75 years to the day after the 16 B-25s and 80 airmen took off from the USS Hornet to bomb Japan. Although it inflicted little damage, the psychological effects of the raid forced a change in Japanese strategy that altered the course of the war.
The rare warbirds are all privately owned and operated, and had gathered in nearby Urbana, OH before landing at the museum for public display. They performed a mass formation and missing man flyovers during a memorial service for the Raiders this afternoon. The only surviving member of the Raiders, Lt. Col. Richard “Dick” Cole, was in attendance.
Later in the ceremony, two B-1B Lancer bombers also performed a flyover. Both aircraft are from squadrons that participated in the original raid in 1942, and one of them was recently rechristened “Ruptured Duck” in tribute to one of the raid aircraft.
The NMUSAF has hosted several of the annual Doolittle Raider reunions in the past, including in 2010 and 2012.
Thank you to forum user DanODell for the photos! For more photos and videos from the event, be sure to check out the Doolittle Raider 75th Anniversary thread on our forums!
View the full photo gallery: Heavy Bombers Weekend 2016 – Janesville, WI – Ryan Sundheimer
The 2016 edition of Heavy Bombers Weekend was held at the Southwest Wisconsin Regional Airport in Janesville, WI. The fly-in is a popular stop for warbirds traveling to the EAA AirVenture airshow in Oshkosh. Even on the opening day of the event, many different aircraft were on hand to take passengers for rides, including EAA’s B-17 Flying Fortress “Aluminum Overcast”, the Commemorative Air Force’s B-29 Superfortress “FIFI”, and the P-51 Mustang “Gunfighter”. Ground tours were included in the price of admission, giving all of the attendees a chance to touch and feel history. The event plans to shift back to its previous home in Madison, WI in 2017 and alternate between the two airports each year.
Check out our coverage of the 2015 Heavy Bombers Weekend as well!
One of the most popular portions of our Youtube channel is our series of on-board videos, which take you to unique vantage points on and in some of your favorite aircraft. We recently added two new videos to the collection, thanks to the help of the Commemorative Air Force’s Missouri Wing. We invite you to take a ride in their B-25 Mitchell “Show Me” at the 2016 Spirit of St Louis Airshow and STEM Expo.
The B-25 was one of three large WWII bombers, along with the B-29 Superfortress “FIFI” and the B-17 Flying Fortress “Texas Raiders”, to perform flybys together during the show. If you look closely in the video, you can even pick out the other aircraft flying ahead. We also filmed the flybys from the ground, so you can see all three incredible aircraft, and get a feel for the low passes each made.
The Missouri Wing offers flight experiences in “Show Me” as well as their TBM Avenger, which we had the privilege to ride in last month. If you want to experience living history and some awesome flying at the same time, please consider booking a seat on one of their flights!
Thank you to the CAF Missouri Wing, and in particular Bob Lawrence and Matt Conrad for their assistance!
The heavy metal was out in force at this year’s Thunder Over Michigan airshow, organized by the Yankee Air Museum and held at the historic Willow Run airport in Ypsilanti, MI. The theme for the 2015 show was “Bombertown, USA”, no doubt in celebration of the preservation of the airport’s special role in WWII B-24 Liberator production. The show, known widely for arranging incredible gatherings of rare warbirds, certainly lived up to the theme by bringing 10 bombers (plus YAM’s own B-17 and B-25, which only flew to give rides during the show) together on one ramp. But the show is not known for static gatherings; organizer Kevin Walsh and his staff usually find a way to get a lot of the aircraft in the skies together. In this case, simultaneous race track patterns of bomber flybys and a grand finale formation flyover!
The 2015 edition of Thunder Over Michigan was also special because the typically warbird-only show hosted the US Navy’s Blue Angels for the third time ever. After a disappointing showing by the USAF Thunderbirds in 2014, it was nice to see the Blues fly along the proper showline. The USAF F-16 Fighting Falcon demo team “Viper East” also performed at the show for the first time in several years.
Despite the unusual modern military presence, which always irritates warbird purists but draws in a ton of very important money for the museum at the same time, the warbirds were still the heart of the show. Aside from the bombers, there was a segment featuring a WWII fighter formation of three P-51 Mustangs, an F4U (FG-1D) Corsair, and a Spitfire. Rick Volker flew an impressively nimble Harvard routine, and the unique WWII battle reenactments, held twice daily, had simulated strafing runs and dogfights overhead. On the static ramp, the museum even pulled out some of its bomber display aircraft including a B-57 Canberra and PB4Y-2 Privateer, which was parked next to her flying sister ship for an incredibly rare sight.
It was a very good weekend, but there were some concerns in the crowd about the sky high ticket prices along with the confusing and overly oppressive entry restrictions. However, the Blue Angels drew in enough people to pack the place each day in less than ideal weather. Hopefully the experience was pleasant enough that the spectators will return next year to support the museum and these incredible aircraft!