Canadian Forces Snowbirds To Visit Blue Angels, Perform For Pensacola

posted in: Airshows, Jet Teams, Schedules | 1

Canadian Forces Snowbirds

The Canadian Forces Snowbirds will be making a rare and surprise appearance at NAS Pensacola next week! The team will be performing demonstrations over the base on May 15 and 16. The Blue Angels also have practice demonstrations those days, but their May 15th (and May 18th) performances are shown as not open to the public. The demonstrations can be viewed from the National Naval Aviation Museum on base.

According to the Pensacola News Journal, this is the plan for public viewing:
– The flight line will open at 1 p.m. Tuesday, May 15, for the Snowbirds performance at 2 p.m.
– Access to the base will begin at 8 a.m., and the flight line will open at 8:30 a.m. before the Blue Angels fly at 9 a.m. Wednesday, May 16. There will be an autograph session after the performance in the museum atrium. The flight line will reopen at 1 p.m. to allow for viewing of the Snowbirds demonstration that begins at 2 p.m.
– The flight line will open at 10:30 a.m. for the Blue Angels practice demonstration at 11:30 a.m. Thursday, May 17.

The Snowbirds are Canada’s national demonstration team. They perform with nine CT-114 Tutor trainer aircraft flying in close formation. You can see their 2018 airshow schedule here on our blog!

USAF Thunderbirds Cancel Appearance At Wings Over Columbus 2018

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USAF Thunderbirds F-16 Fighting Falcon

The USAF Thunderbirds have canceled their planned appearance at the 2018 Wings Over Columbus airshow at Columbus AFB in Mississippi. The move was announced in a video update by Thunderbird #1 following the death of Thunderbird #4, Maj. Stephen Del Bagno, in a crash during practice last week. The team had previously announced they were skipping their performances at the March ARB airshow this past weekend as well as Sun ‘n Fun in Lakeland, FL next weekend.

It is important to note that while the Thunderbird performances have been canceled, the airshows themselves will be held as originally scheduled. The Air Force’s Air Combat Command has been working to add single-ship demonstrations to affected shows; Sun ‘n Fun recently announced that the F-16 Fighting Falcon demonstration team (Viper Demo) will perform there to fill in for the Thunderbirds.

We have updated our 2018 USAF Thunderbirds schedule to reflect the confirmed cancellations, but we expect more appearances to be canceled as part of a safety stand down after the accident. Stay tuned to AirshowStuff for future updates.

USAF Thunderbirds Cancel Appearances After Fatal Accident

posted in: Airshows, Jet Teams | 1

Thunderbirds Cancel Shows

Following a crash which killed Thunderbird #4, the team has canceled some upcoming shows.

As of April 6th, the team’s performances at March AFB and Sun ‘n Fun have been canceled. The rest of the season schedule is still to be determined. Canceling shows while the team stands down to investigate the mishap and take time to grieve is standard protocol following crashes.

“Though we are deeply saddened by their loss of a valuable teammate, we totally understand and support the Thunderbirds’ decision. They have a requirement to take the necessary time to assess their current situation and plot a path forward, and we certainly respect their professionalism and diligence in ensuring their safe return to airshows,” said John Leenhouts, SUN ‘n FUN President/CEO.

Leenhouts also confirmed that this year’s daily airshows will include several activities to honor the service of Maj. Stephen Del Bagno, the fallen Thunderbird Number 4, and that a portion of the proceeds from this year’s event will be donated through the proper channels to support the Thunderbird family.

The Air Force’s Air Combat Command (ACC) and Sun ‘n Fun are working together to bring alternative USAF demonstrations to the event.

In a statement, Airshow Director Greg Gibson said “We appreciate ACC’s efforts on our behalf in such a short timeframe. They are working to make available a potential first-line combat aircraft to perform full aerial displays and/or engage in Heritage Flights with several of the numerous rare WWII fighters we have in attendance this year. We will make periodic announcements throughout the following days as these appearances are confirmed.”

Please visit our forums for further discussion on the crash and what it means for the airshow season.

Snowbirds Change 2018 Schedule To Add Airshow London Performances

posted in: Airshows, Jet Teams, Schedules | 0

Canadian Forces Snowbirds

The Canadian Forces Snowbirds will once again soar over London, Ontario this September. Organizers of Airshow London announced today that the team has added the show to their 2018 schedule and will perform on September 7, 8, and 9.

London is one of Canada’s largest airshows and it was quite surprising that it did not appear on the original 2018 schedule for the Snowbirds. The team instead planned to perform in Mont-Joli, Quebec that weekend instead. We have very little information on that event and do not know if it will be held now or not.

We have updated our copy of the 2018 Canadian Forces Snowbirds schedule to reflect the change. Please make sure to follow our forums to stay up to date as it continues to change throughout the year!

Florida’s Melbourne Air And Space Show Changes 2018 Dates, Retains Thunderbirds As Headliner

posted in: Airshows, Jet Teams, Schedules | 5

USAF Thunderbirds - Opposing Pass

The Melbourne Air and Space Show announced today that they have changed dates from March 17-18 to March 24-25. Organizers say that they decided to change dates in order to keep the US Air Force Thunderbirds as headliners.

The move is not entirely unexpected, as the two other airshows that originally planned to have the Thunderbirds in March also went on to change their plans.

First, Wings Over Atlanta at Dobbins ARB in Georgia canceled their March 24-25 show citing financial reasons. Then, the Luke Days airshow at Luke AFB in Arizona changed dates from March 10-11 to March 17-18 and picked up a commitment from the US Navy Blue Angels to replace the Thunderbirds as the headlining act.

This left Melbourne as the sole March appearance by the Thunderbirds, with an open weekend before and after. Now that they have slipped back to the original Wings Over Atlanta dates, they represent the first airshow of the Thunderbirds’ 2018 season.

All of this schedule churn is extremely unusual, but likely a result of the equally unusual dismissal and replacement of former Thunderbird #1, Lt. Col. Jason Heard after the 2017 season. The new Thunderbird #1, Lt. Col. Kevin Walsh, had not previously flown the demonstration and it is not surprising that he would require extra practice time to learn the profile. In fact, we speculated that this might end up happening at the time of the announcement. These schedule moves give the team an extra two weeks of training time, and by reconfirming their Melbourne appearance for March 24th, they seem confident that it will be enough.

USAF F-22 Raptor Demonstration Team 2018 Airshow Schedule Released

posted in: Military, Schedules | 4

USAF F-22 Raptor Demonstration Team

Here is the 2018 airshow schedule for the US Air Force F-22 Raptor Demonstration Team! Will you see them in 2018? Let us know! Post in the AirshowStuff Forums or on the AirshowStuff Facebook page and make sure you share pictures after the show!

Schedules often change during the year – for the latest updates please be sure to check our forums!

All shows unless listed otherwise include a USAF Heritage Flight.

2018 Appearance Schedule – US Air Force F-22 Raptor Demonstration Team
March 17: MCAS Yuma Airshow – Yuma, AZ
March 24-25: Los Angeles County Airshow – Lancaster, CA
March 24: Riverside Airshow – Riverside, CA (HF Only)

April 3-8: FIDAE 2018 – Santiago, Chile (Demo Only)
April 21-22: Wings Over Columbus – Columbus AFB, MS
April 28: Beale Air Show – Beale AFB, CA

May 5: Manassas Airshow – Manassas, VA (HF Only)
May 5-6: JB McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst Open House – Trenton, NJ
May 12-13: MacDill Air Fest – MacDill AFB
May 19-20: Airpower Over Hampton Roads – JB Langley-Eustis, Hampton, VA
May 26-27: Jones Beach Air Show – Wantagh, NY

June 2-3: Mountain Home AFB, ID
June 9-10: Thunder Over Niagara – Niagara Falls, NY
June 23-24: Dayton Air Show – Dayton, OH
June 30-July 1: Arctic Thunder Open House – JB Elmendorf-Richardson, AK

July 21-22: Cold Lake Air Show – Cold Lake, Alberta

August 10-12: Defenders of Freedom – Offutt, NE
August 18-19: Terre Haute Air Show – Terre Haute, IN

September 8: 187th Fighter Wing Open House – Montgomery, AL
September 16: VAANG Family Day – JB Langley-Eustis, VA (Demo Only)
September 22-23: NAS Oceana Air Show – Virginia Beach, VA
September 29-30: MCAS Miramar Air Show – Miramar, CA

October 13-14: Atlanta Air Show – Hampton, GA
October 13-14: Wings over North Georgia – Rome, GA
October 20-21: Hammond Northshore Regional Airshow – Hammond, LA
October 27: 1 FW Family Day – JB Langley-Eustis, VA (Demo Only)

November 1-3: NAS Pensacola Airshow – Pensacola, FL

USAF F-16 Fighting Falcon Demo Team 2018 Airshow Schedule Released

posted in: Military, Schedules | 0

USAF F-16 Fighting Falcon Demonstration Team

Here is the 2018 airshow schedule for the US Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon Demonstration Team! Will you see them in 2018? Let us know! Post in the AirshowStuff Forums or on the AirshowStuff Facebook page and make sure you share pictures after the show!

Schedules often change during the year – for the latest updates please be sure to check our forums!

2018 Appearance Schedule – US Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon Demonstration Team

February 11: WBCA Stars and Stripes Airshow -Laredo, TX
Feb 28-March 4: Heritage Flight Conference

April 7-9: Space Coast Warbird AirShow 2018 – Titusville, FL
April 12-15: Sun ‘n Fun – Lakeland, FL
April 21-22: Vero Beach Airshow – Vero Beach, FL
April 28: 2018 Air & Space Expo – Charleston, SC (HF Only)
April 28-29: Wings Over Myrtle Beach – Myrtle Beach, SC

May 5-6: Holloman AFB Open House & Air Show – Holloman AFB, NM
May 12-13: Dyess Big Country Airfest – Dyess AFB, TX
May 19-20: Hangar 24 Airfest – Redlands, CA
May 26-27: Miami Beach Air and Sea Show – Miami, FL

June 16-17: Chippewa Valley Airshow – Eau Claire, WI
June 30-July 1: Evansville ShrinersFest Airshow – Evansville, IN

July 21-22: Biloxi Gulf Coast Airshow – Biloxi, MS
July 24-29: EAA Airventure Oshkosh – Oshkosh, WI (HF Only)

August 25-26: Sound of Speed Airshow – St. Joseph, MO

September 1-3: Cleveland National Airshow – Cleveland, OH
September 7-9: Airshow London – London, ON
September 14-17: National Championship Air Races – Reno, NV

October 13-14: Spirit of St. Louis Airshow – Chesterfield, MO
October 20-21: Wings Over Houston Airshow – Houston, TX
October 27-28: NAS Jacksonville Airshow – NAS Jacksonville, FL

November 3-4: Stuart Air Show – Stuart, FL

Blue Angels Rock Oshkosh, Discuss Super Hornet Transition Plans

posted in: Airshows, Jet Teams, Popular Posts | 3

Blue Angels Fly at Oshkosh for the First Time

Oshkosh always has an award winning lineup and many highlights through the week. This year – the show was home to another first.

For the first time ever, the United States Navy Blue Angels flew a full demonstration in the skies over Oshkosh.

The team arrived Wednesday afternoon during the afternoon airshow, announcing their presence with a perfectly-timed (of course) flyby at the end of the national anthem. Only five jets arrived initially, with #3 arriving several hours later and #7 coming in separately after that.

On Thursday, the diamond pilots performed their circle and arrival maneuvers, where they pick out landmarks to use as they fly. They were supposed to do this during the daily airshow, but the aircraft had a small mishap while taxiing out in the interest of safety they canceled. They were able to reschedule for 8pm, after the airport is normally closed. Two jets took off and completed the necessary maneuvers just in time. Fans who stayed noted the rare chance to see the Blues jets with afterburner glow and lights on. The solo pilots performed their circle and arrival flight on Friday morning.

Noticeably absent from the show was the Blue Angels’ famous blue and gold C-130 Hercules, Fat Albert. In the wake of the crash of a USMC C-130T that killed 16 servicemembers, the USMC ordered a safety stand down of all C-130Ts, including Fat Albert. Bert was not only unable to perform, she never even made it to Oshkosh. Instead, the team relied on a Navy C-40 Clipper, the military version of the Boeing 737-700C, to bring in their maintenance crew and some equipment.

US Navy Blue Angels - EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2017US Navy Blue Angels - EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2017

The Blue Angels also participated in a popular Theater in the Woods event on Friday, July 28th. During this appearance, they spoke about being on the team and took questions from the audience. A couple of the questions were particularly interesting; when asked about female Blue Angel pilots in the future, Blue Angel #1 revealed that there have been no female F/A-18 applicants for the past two recruitment cycles. The team has never had a female fly as a Hornet demonstration pilot.

US Navy Blue Angels - EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2017US Navy Blue Angels - EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2017

The transition to the Super Hornet was also discussed. Currently, the team is in their 30th year of flying the Boeing F/A-18 Legacy Hornet. Despite internet rumors of a switch to the Super Hornet in September of this year or at the beginning of the 2018 season, the team plans to continue flying their Hornets for now. In fact, they are currently inducting three “new” Hornets into the squadron.

The target date for transitioning to the Super Hornet is not until 2019, and it was quickly pointed out that it could slip beyond that. There are several Super Hornets already set aside for the team, but they will need to be modified and tested before the pilots can begin training. One step in the right direction was mentioned; apparently a couple (now previous) Blue Angel pilots have already flown the current flight demonstration profile in the Super Hornet simulator and the results seemed positive. Hang in there Rhino fans!

Didn’t get a chance to see the Blue Angels at Oshkosh in person? No worries! We’ve got you covered with a video of their entire Friday performance!

WATCH: Patrouille de France Performs In The US For The First Time In Decades

The Patrouille de France performed the first airshow routine of their North American tour this past weekend, and we were there to capture it! Check out this video of their entire show on the Friday practice day at the Melbourne Air and Space Show in Florida. Melbourne is one of just a handful of stops the team will make on their whirlwind tour through the US and Canada this month, and marks the first US performance by the team in more than 30 years.

The routine is a little shorter than those of the US Navy Blue Angels and US Air Force Thunderbirds, but contains all of the same exciting elements – formation aerobatics, opposing flybys, and nonstop action. Because the Patrouille perform with eight jets instead of six, they can put together some larger formations and utilize multiple groups of aircraft in a similar fashion to the Canadian Forces Snowbirds, who perform with nine CT-114 Tutors. The French team also makes use of red- and blue-colored smoke, which might not sound like much but adds to the performance significantly and is a rare sight here in the US.

Patrouille de France US Tour 2017French Air Force Airbus A400M - Patrouille de France US Tour 2017

As a special treat, the team’s Airbus A400M Atlas support aircraft also took to the skies for a few flybys. It is accompanying the team all throughout their tour to transport their crew and equipment, and can also serve as a photo platform during their planned flyovers of US landmarks, such as the Statue of Liberty and New York City. This marked the first ever airshow performance by an A400M in the US and although it is far from the maximum performance company demonstration, it was an exciting addition to the lineup! You can check it out in the video below.

The Horsemen Cometh! Warbird Formation Team Announces 2017 Airshow Schedule

posted in: Schedules, Warbirds | 0

Horsemen Flight Team - P-51 Mustangs

Exciting news for fans of the Horsemen Flight Team, and warbird enthusiasts in general! Last week, it was announced that the Horsemen would be returning for a four show season in 2017. Consisting of Lead pilot Steve Hinton, Left Wing pilot Ed Shipley, and Right Wing pilot Dan Friedkin, the Horsemen have been dazzling airshow fans since their inception in 1994. With a motto of “Escape Life’s Gravity”, the team’s formation flying will have you watching in awe as they loop, roll, climb, bank, and turn as one unit in legendary aircraft like the P-51 Mustang, P-38 Lightning, F8F Bearcat, and F-86 Sabre.

The team took the 2016 season off, but announced their return with an incredible video and website. You can see their 2017 airshow schedule below. Although they have been known to switch to different aircraft in the past, they say that they are planning to feature two P-51s and a P-38 in their routine this year.

2017 Horsemen Flight Team Airshow Schedule

July 8-9
Duxford Flying Legends Flying Legends
IWM Duxford, Cambridgeshire

August 19-20
Selfridge Open House
Harrison Charter Township, MI

September 29 – October 1
Huntington Beach Air Show
Huntington Beach, CA – Pier

November 11-12
Aviation Nation Nellis Air Force Base Open House & Air Show
Las Vegas, NV

Where will you see this exciting team perform this year? Let us know on our Facebook page and in our forums!

– Justin Miner

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