It’s Airshow Season


You better believe it’s airshow season. The show calendar is swelling like a zucchini in August. Next week in England, the Farnborough International Airshow takes off. It happens every two years, alternating with the Paris Air Show. This Hampshire happening is one of the doyennes of airshows.

Beginning July 14, Farnborough showcases the latest from the aerospace industry, including military aircraft. Planes are in the air every day. And on the tarmac. The final two days, beginning July 19, feature an airshow open to the public that attracts more than 100,000 spectators.

But the takeaway is tens of billions of dollars in sales for Airbus and Boeing. This year, for example, expect Airbus to drum up commitments and announce they’re building an A330neo. In 2012, airlines committed to 758 new aircraft.

The airshow’s history goes back to 1920 and the Royal Air Force. Interactive games make it a family affair.

If you’ve never been to an airshow you should know that they’re good fun. We used to go to the Abbotsford Airshow every August in British Columbia. It’s Canada’s largest.

Also coming up is the Bournemouth Airshow July 28 – 31. A beach setting and extraordinary aerial acrobatics attract hundreds of thousands of spectators.

Motorsports in the air is what the Reno Air Races are all about. Six classes of aircraft go pedal-to-the-metal, exceeding 500 mph over a 3- to 8-mile pylon-racing course above the Nevada desert. Expect more than 70 aircraft at the Sept 10 – 14 airshow.

From July 28 – Aug. 3, the largest gathering of airplane geeks in the U.S. nest at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, in Oshkosh, Wis. Every type of aircraft, from vintage to home-built, probably more than 10,000 in all, flock here.

How about the Navy’s Blue Angels unspooling into the unknown? Where faith is a physical act. And the F-35B Joint Strike Force is around here someplace. The Miramar Air Show, Oct. 3 – 5in San Diego, is the largest military aircraft show in the U.S. The action thriller Top Gun was filmed on location. Golden Knights and Navy Leap Frogs parachute teams will do what they do.

The Tarmac’s View: Here’s a database of airshows around the U.S.


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