Yankee Air Museum Launches Drive-In Airshows To “Keep ‘Em Flying” During Pandemic

posted in: Airshows, Event Recap, Museums | 1
P-51 Mustang "Old Crow" - AirshowStuff

After canceling their annual Thunder Over Michigan airshow this summer due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Yankee Air Museum decided they still wanted to put on a flying event.

They settled on not one but two socially-distanced, drive-in airshows that they’re calling “Friday Night Flights”. The lineup is comprised of Yankee’s own flying warbirds: the B-17 Flying Fortress, B-25 Mitchell, C-47 Dakota, and UH-1 Huey helicopter; plus other local warbirds like a P-51 Mustang, PT-17 Stearman biplane, and O-2 Skymasters.

Tickets are only sold to members and supporters of the museum, one ticket per car load. Attendance is limited to no more than 40 cars. Spectators are required to remain near their vehicle, but ample room is given for chairs and blankets. Everyone has a front row view of the action and no one has to rush the fence. Narration is provided via FM radio so there are no overpowering speakers. It’s a much more personal, intimate affair.

There are no static displays, so it’s straight to the action once the show starts. For one hour, the warbirds take turns circling the airfield with flybys down the crowd line. It’s not the day-long experience of Thunder Over Michigan, but it’s certainly a nice break from the pandemic, a chance to see some vintage airplanes in flight, and an important fundraiser for the museum.

The first event was held on August 21st, and the second one is coming up on Friday, September 11th. Tickets are not sold at the gate, so make sure to buy yours ahead of time!

You can also plan on Thunder Over Michigan returning in 2021. In fact, they recently announced that the 2021 airshow will be themed around a gathering of B-25 Mitchell bombers!

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