COLUMBIA — Just about perfect weather is expected for the 22nd Annual Salute to Veterans Air Show this weekend at Columbia Regional Airport, with sunny skies and temperatures in the 80s in the forecast. Here's all the information you'll need along with a few tips for maximizing your experience:
Five things you shouldn't miss at the air show:
- Back after 12 years, the U.S. Marine Corps AV-8B Harrier Demonstration will perform a series of maneuvers, including a 90-degree climbing turn and a high speed pass over the runway from an altitude of only 500 feet.
- Two planes used in the movie “Amelia” will be on the tarmac for viewing as well as take flight
- The U.S. Army K-9 Corps will demonstrate how military working dogs are used in finding explosives, search and rescue and other procedures. This event takes place before the noon Salute to the Nation Solemn Ceremony.
- As part of the Army’s “Strength in Action Tour,” attendees of the air show will be able to take part in five interactive events, including a simulation of flying a helicopter.
- Thirteen honored guests will be available to meet with the public as well as sign autographs. Guests include Capt. Robert Gibson, a NASA astronaut who was the commander on four of his five space shuttle missions from 1984 to 1995; Col. Michel Latouche, an air commander in Uganda and Rwanda for the Canadian Forces; Hickman High School and MU graduate Capt. William Bond, who served as the Squadron Operations Office for Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm; and Capt. Mary Burch Nirmaier and Patricia Young, who both served as WWII Women Airforce Service Pilots.
- The "Screaming Eagles" Army parachute team will land at 11 a.m. in the Marvin Owens Soccer Stadium at the corner of Range Line Street and Wilkes Boulevard as part of Columbia College's third annual Military Recognition Day. At 10 a.m., the school will recognize George and Gayleen Ousley for their scholarship donation. Additionally, the Col. Charles E. McGee Scholarship will be awarded to Air Force Cadet Patrick Hatcher.
- The 22nd Annual Salute to Veterans Air Show is scheduled from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Columbia Regional Airport.
- The air show is scheduled from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
- 9:55 a.m. — The 22nd Annual Salute to Veterans Parade will take place in downtown Columbia, including the Screaming Eagles landing on four Broadway’s intersections. All of the planes used during the air show are scheduled to fly over the crowd during the parade to salute fallen soldiers.
- 10:45 a.m. — A military ceremony will take place at the Boone County Courthouse Veterans Memorial. The ceremony will include the Columbia Community Band, a speech by honored guests and introductions of the WASP members and veterans. Songs will be played followed by a 21-gun salute and taps to end the ceremony.
SALUTE TO VETERANS AIR SHOW
- 9:30 a.m. — Gates open. There aren't specific times for all of the air show's events, but they will occur in the following order:
- The show begins with the Kansas City Dawn Patrol “Flying Circus” WWI Airplanes taking flight. The Dawn Patrol includes two planes used in the movie “Amelia.” To watch a video of the Dawn Patrol, click here.
- The U.S. Army 101st Airborne Division's “Screaming Eagles" Parachute Demonstration Team will put on an aerial show. Past shows have included the team members joining hands in a circle as they fall before separating and using their parachutes.
- The U.S. Navy Texan Aerobatic Demonstration Team performs.
- The U.S. K-9 Corps demonstrates how dogs are used in military service. To see a video of the dogs, click here.
- Noon — The Salute to the Nation Solemn Ceremony features the American and Canadian national anthems and a 21-gun salute before the names of 225 veterans from the Veterans Memorial at Boone County Courthouse are read. The honored guests will be introduced, and the Boone County Fire Protection District Bagpipers will perform.
- The Canadian Armed Forces C-140 Aurora takes flight.
- The Skyhawks, the Canadian Armed Forces parachute team, performs. To watch a video of the Skyhawks, click here.
- The U.S. Air Force A-10 West Thunderbolt II Demonstration Team will demonstrate the agility of the planes, including rapid rolls and maximum performance climbs and descents. To watch a video of the team, click here.
- The Thunderbolt II and the WWI P-38 Lightning will fly to the song “We Remember” and end the performance in a victory roll.
- Super Hornet East Coast Tactical Demonstration Team the “Gladiators” will take flight. They make several tight turns and flip upside down during their flights. To see a video of the "Gladiators," click here.
- The Aeroshell Aerobatic T-6 Demonstration Team will perform. To see a video of the team, click here.
- The U.S. Marine Corps AV-8B Harrier Demonstration will round out the day’s events by flying straight upward without the need to taxi as well as performing 90 degree climbing turns and hovering in front of the crowd. To see a video of the demonstration, click here.
- 3:30 p.m. — Aerial events end for the day; buses will continue to shuttle attendees.
RULES OF ENGAGEMENT
- Shuttles are available for $3 per person round trip from the Hearnes Center and the Jefferson City Airport starting at 9:15 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. There will be limited on-site parking because of recent rainfall. Folding chairs and collapsible strollers are allowed on the shuttles.
- No coolers or picnic baskets are allowed onto shuttles or into the event. Food and beverage tents will be available.
- No pets.
- No smoking inside the gate.