Thunderbirds Return

2018 Air and Space Expo

South Carolina Radio Network
April 26, 2018 - 7:44 am


There will be some high-flying action in the skies over the Lowcountry this weekend as Joint Base Charleston hosts the 2018 Air and Space Expo.

It will be the first time in seven years the base will host the event, which features air acrobatic acts, vintage planes, flight demonstrations and the United States Air Force Thunderbirds. On the ground, guests can go inside planes, talk to pilots, meet crews and see Air Force exhibits. The Air Force band and honor guard will perform.

“We know that the public is hungry for air shows,” Air Force Lt. Col. Francisco Flores said. “They love to see what we do and I can’t think of a better way to go ahead and pay back to our awesome military community that we’re a part of down here in Charleston.”

About 100,000 people attended the show seven years ago.

“You will go ahead and have the opportunity to interact with those of us who are flying these awesome machines,” Flores, the Expo’s director, said. “We’ll have recruiting zone stations. We’ll have tons of exhibits. You’ll be able to see what we do every day.”

For those people who don’t attend the show, Flores said people throughout the Charleston will be able to see the planes flying Saturday.

“We’ll be high enough but low enough to go ahead and thrill those who are going to be on the ground near to us, but high enough that those who are far away on the beaches will be able to see some of the action,” he said.

The Thunderbirds are the stars of the show. The elite Air Force precision team is scheduled to perform Saturday.The show goes on rain or shine.

“The cloud deck is going to dictate the level in which we will go ahead and perform,” Flores said. “So we do have some capability of doing something a little bit closer to the ground. We’ll have tons of statics on the ground as well so the public an go ahead and see those, climb in and talk to the folks.”

Admission is free, but there are some restrictions on what guests can take. Click here for information.  Gates open at 8:30 a.m. Saturday.

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