Friday, March 20, 2009

Airshow Traveler - March 18, 2009 Newsletter



This issue brought to you by the



Airshow Traveler's Air Show Weekly

Volume 3, Issue 2 

March 18, 2009


Welcome to Airshow Traveler Magazine's Newsletter, Air Show Weekly, where we take a look at upcoming airshows and showcase current aviation topics.


All air show information listed is accurate as we know it.  Still, it is best to check with the individual air show to see if there are any changes.  Even then, scheduled aircraft may not appear due to bad weather en route, or because of mechanical breakdown.


In This Issue

Luke AFB Air Show

Florida International Air Show

Thunder in the Valley

Museum News

Photos of the Week

Looking Ahead


Luke AFB Air Show, March 21-22


Location:  Glendale, AZ 

Admission:  Free

Gates Open:  9AM


If you love the F-16 Fighting Falcon, you've come to the right air base.  Luke is home to the 56th Fighter Wing which is comprised of eight active fighter squadrons and one reserve squadron all flying various models of the F-16.  One of these squadrons, the 63rd FS, is due to be inactivated this year.


Traditionally, Luke is the first stop for the Thunderbirds air show season and this year is no exception, if you don't count the flyover they did at the Super Bowl.  We were at Luke two years ago to cover this air show and it offers up another good one this year.  Besides the T-birds headliner, on tap is a F-22 Raptor demo and the CV-22 Opsrey.  On the static side, if all the aircraft show up, you can start your own photo album showing a cross-section of aircraft from pre-WWII to today's modern aircraft.


The Osprey is scheduled to perform at Luke AFB like the CV-22B shown below (04-0027) from the 71st Special Ops Squadron at Kirtland AFB, NM.  The photo below was taken at the 2006 Aviation Nation air show at Nellis AFB.

CV-22 Osprey


Performers & Static


USAF Thunderbirds

HH-60 Pavehawk

Air Force Academy Wings of Blue Parachute Team

C-130 Hercules

CV-22 Osprey Demo

AT-38C Talon

C-17 Globemaster III Demo

F-15E Eagle

F-22 Raptor Demo

A-10 Thunderbolt II

A-10 Thunderbolt II (Warthog) Demo

T-6A Texan II

USAF Heritage Flight: F-22, A-10, P-40

T-1 Jayhawk

Bill Reeseman and his Mig-17

B-52 Stratofortress

Red Bull Helicopter

B-1B Lancer

Matt Younkin and the Twin Beech

E-3 Sentry

Ed Hamill and his Pitts

KC-135 Stratotanker

Tim Weber and his Extra 300

C-17 Globemaster III

Kirby Chambliss and his Edge 540

KC-10 Extender

The Horsemen P-51 Flight Team

German Tornado

The Stearman Squadron

F-16C Fighting Falcon


Coast Guard HH-60


MQ-1 Predator


Beech UC-12F Kingair


Cessna UC-35C Citation


P-51 Mustang


Beech Staggerwing




T-6 Texan


B-25H Mitchell


TBM-3E Avenger


B-17 Flying Fortress


T-33 Shooting Star


L-39 Albatross


AC-47 Gunship


C-45 Expeditor


Nanchang CJ-6A


T-28 Trojan


Super Corsair


Twin Commander 500




L-29 Delfin


Florida International Air Show, March 21-22


Location:  Charlotte County Airport, Punta Gorda, FL 

Adult Admission, 13 and up:  $18 in advance, $20 at gate

Child Admission, Ages 2-12:  $5

Children under the Age of 2:  Free

Gates Open:  9AM

The Florida International Air Show at Charlotte County Airport in Punta Gorda is one of our favorite shows.  It always offers up a stellar performer lineup and a plethera of static displays.  This year the headliner is the Blue Angels.  The show offers up excellent photography opportunities, with only some sidelighting early in the morning that gives way to optimum sun position as the day goes on.  This, of course, assumes a sunny day.


During WWII, this airport was known as Punta Gorda Army Air Field serving as a training base and a base for anti-submarine patrols.  Our friend and WWII ace L. Kirk John took advanced flight training here in a P-40 Warhawk.  The base was part of the Third Air Force.  Besides the P-40, pilots also trained on P-51 Mustangs and P-47 Thunderbolts.  Many of the iron tie-downs that were used to secure these fighter aircraft are now used to secure civilian aircraft at the airport.


The B-25J Mitchell 'Panchito' (44-30734, N9079Z), as seen below, is scheduled to perform at Punta Gorda.  I was fortunate enough to fly in this vintage WWII medium bomber.  The flight gave me a new found respect for the loss of hearing endured by flight crews in the war.  Fortunately I was wearing an advance headset that muffles the roar of the engines.  Our veterans had no such luxury to protect their ears.



B-25 Panchito

B-25 Panchito




US Navy Blue Angels

Pitts Special

Mike Goulian and his Edge 540

P-51D Mustang 'Quicksilver'

Special Ops Parachute Team

F/A-18 Hornet

Dan Buchanan and his Hang Glider

L-39 Albatross

F-16 Fighting Falcon Demo

Lockheed 12A Electra Junior

F-15 Eagle Demo


USAF Heritage Flight: F-15, F-16, P-51

F-5 Tiger

Walt Pierce and American Barnstormers Double Trouble Wingwalking

T-34 Mentor

Air Force Reserve Jet Car

Curtiss SB2C Helldiver

Greg Koontz and the Alabama Boys


John Mohr and his Stearman

C-130W Hercules

John Collver and his Texan


B-25 Mitchell 'Panchito'

CH-46E Sea Knight


Douglas DC-3


MH-53E Sea Dragon


T-28 Trojan


T-6 Texan


C-45 Expeditor


Thunder in the Valley, March 21-22


Location:  Columbus Metropolitan Airport, Columbus, GA. 

Admission, Adults Ages 7 and up:  $8 in advance, $10 at gate

Admission, Children Ages 6 and Under:  Free

Gates Open:  10AM


Though we have never been to this show, it is worth the price of admission to see one of the most beautiful aircraft you will see on the airshow circuit.  It's a T-33A Shooting Star (58-665, NX556RH) in Thunderbird markings, and it's owned by Fowler 'Big Dog' Cary, Jr.  The pilot is our good friend, Colonel Jerry 'Jive' Kerby, who is now retired from the Air Force after flying among other aircraft, the F-4 Phantom.  And the narrator for his stellar performance is the lovely LM 'Lunar' Sawyer, who just happens to be Jerry's bride.  Yes, I know what the LM stands for, but I am sworn to secrecy :)

The photo below was taken by one of our ace photographers, Howard German, at the 2008 McGuire AFB air show.  It also happens to be the cover shot of our Jul/Aug 2008 issue.


T-33A Shooting Star



Neal Darnell and his Jet Truck

P-51 Mustang

Silver Wings Parachute Team


Kent Pietsch Airshows

F/A-18 Hornet

Gary Rower and his Stearman

Bradley Tank

Red Eagle Aerobatic Team

Stryker Personnel Carrier

Parade of Planes


Fowler 'Big Dog' Cary's T-33 Shooting Star

C-47 Skytrain


T-33 Shooting Star 'Red Knight'


T-34 Mentor


T-28 Trojan


AH-64 Apache


T-45 Goshawk


C-130 Hercules


B-25 Mitchell


AH-1 Cobra


Museum News


AMC Museum, Dover AFB, DE

March 27:  Hangar Flying Series Showcases the Connie

Photojournalist Ralph Pettersen will discuss his favorite aircraft, the Lockheed Constellation.  Ralph is the creator of the website on Connies,  The event starts at 5:30 with light hors d'oeuvres  and a cash bar.  Discussion on the Connie starts at 7PM with Mr. Pettersen and two pilots who flew the military version of the Connie, the C-121.  No tickets are required for the event, but a $5 cash donation is requested to help defray costs.


March 28:  Collectors Show

From 9AM-3PM come out to the free collectors show.  We will have a table there showcasing some of our favorite photos, so please stop by.



Fantasy of Flight, Polk City, FL

March 27-28:  Living History Symposium Series - WASPs

Women Air Service Pilot's (WASP) Betty Blake, Helen Wyatt Snapp and Bernice "Bee" Falk Haydu will appear to discuss their wartime experiences and interact with guests to the museum.  During WWII, the infamous Jackie Cochran founded the WASP program where 1,074 women ferried aircraft from the US to military bases in the Pacific and European theaters.  The symposium is part of the admission to the museum which is $28.95 for adults, $14.95 for children ages 6-15, plus tax.  AAA card accepted for discount.  I know these prices are steep, especially in this economy, but this museum is worth it.





 Photos of the Week 


With the Thunderbirds starting their airshow season this weekend, I thought a few photos of them in action was in order.


Thunderbirds Delta Formation

Thunderbirds Diamond Formation



Looking Ahead


Next Week:

March 28: Riverside Air Show, CA

March 28: American Heroes Air Show, Gainesville, FL

March 28-29: Tyndall AFB Gulf Coast Salute, Panama City, FL

March 28-29: MacDill AFB Airfest, Tampa, FL

Blue Angels:

March 21-22: Florida International Air Show, Punta Gorda, FL

March 28-29: Tyndall AFB, Panama City, FL

April 4-5: Tuscaloosa, AL

April 18-19: NAS Corpus Christi, TX



March 21-22: Luke AFB, Glendale, AZ

March 28-29: MacDill AFB, Tampa, FL

April 4-5: Keesler AFB, Biloxi, MS

April 18-19: Ceiba, Puerto Rico


Thank You


Thank you for reading the latest issue of our newsletter.


God Bless Us Everyone,


Wayne Matusiak, Publisher
Airshow Traveler Magazine

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