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The U.S. Navy Blue Angels return to the Dayton Vectren Air Show in 2016.
The Vectren Dayton Air Show Presented by Kroger is designed as a wholesome family-friendly event. Held every summer at the Dayton International Airport, the show features world-class entertainment. In addition, there are activities and events that will capture the imagination of kids of all ages, including interactive, hands on activities, experiments, and demonstrations for children ages 6-16.
Thrilling audiences for 70 years, the iconic U.S. Navy Blue Angels fly six powerful F/A-18 Hornet fighter jets during their tightly choreographed, high-energy demonstration. The 110-member Squadron is led by Blue Angel #1 Commander Ryan “Boss” Bernacchi. 45 members of the team will travel to the Birthplace of Aviation from their home base at Naval Air Station (NAS), Pensacola, FL to stage the show next June. The F-18 generators are made by GE Aviation Systems in Vandalia, Ohio. The Blues last appeared in Dayton in 2014.
Hey! Hey! Hey! It’s Fat Albert! Consisting of eight crew members and one C-130, Fat Albert Airlines is critical to the overall mission of the team. The C-130 joined the team in 1970 as the support aircraft. In addition to being the opening attraction for the Blue Angels demonstration, Fat Albert’s primary mission is to transport 35,000 pounds of cargo and roughly 45 Blue Angels team members to every show site throughout the country. Capt. Katie Higgins will be at the controls of Fat Albert. She is a 2008 graduate of the Naval Academy.
Last appearing in 2008, the Raptor will make an appearance in Dayton. Its incredible maneuverability, aided by its computerized controls and powerful, thrust-vectoring jet engines make the Raptor a must see attraction at this year’s event. The Raptor was the first American fighter jet to fly at supercruise- flying at supersonic speeds without using the afterburner. The F-22 can reach supersonic airspeeds of Mach 1.5 without using the afterburner. The F-22 will be flown by Major Daniel “FFits” Dickinson. Be sure to attend this year’s show to witness all this incredible aircraft has to showcase!
The P-51 Mustang, “Baby Duck” will fly in formation with the U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor aircraft. While the Heritage Flight is a memorable sight, seeing the WWII era Mustang as a demonstration will give spectators a better perspective of what some would call the definitive fighter of the ages. The P-51 was a “game changer” for WWII as the Mustang provided critical escort for bombers. The maneuverable Mustang is fast and was a proven champ in dogfights with German fighters. The Foundation P-51D aircraft is currently painted in the markings of Capt. Herbert G. Kolb’s P-51D “Baby Duck”.
TORA! TORA! TORA! will present a dramatic recreation of the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor. This emotionally moving crowd favorite consists of replica Zero fighters, Kate torpedo bombers and Val dive bomber aircraft, eight in total, along with realistic explosions, fire and smoke. An emotional and factual narration complete with President Roosevelt’s address places you in the battle and salutes fallen soldiers on both sides of the conflict. The feature is a vivid history lesson for air show spectators.
The Navy’s parachute team, known as the Leap Frogs, will leap join the U.S. Navy Blue Angels in Dayton this year. 2004 was the last appearance the Leap Frogs made at the Vectren Dayton Air Show. The team consists of active-duty personnel drawn from Naval Special Warfare (NSW), including Navy SEALS and Special Warfare Combatant-Craft Crewmen (SWCC). The Leap Frogs, known for their aggressive style of jumping, will thrill spectators with their precision aerial maneuvers including free fall speeds up to 180 miles per hour. After performances the Leap Frogs will sign autographs and answer questions about what it’s like to be a Navy SEAL or SWCC. The 15 member team will travel to Dayton from their Naval Base in San Diego, California.
Sean D. Tucker is known as one of the world’s best aviators. Sean started his career as an aerobatic pilot in 1976. He has flown more than 1,200 performances at 475 air shows in front of more than 105 million fans. Sean has received numerous awards and recognitions including being named as one of the Living Legends of Flight, a prestigious group of aviators including General Jimmy Doolittle, General Charles Yeager, and John Glenn. When not flying, Sean is actively involved in the aviation community. He is currently serving as Chairman of the Young Eagles Program and works with at-risk kids through the Every Kid Can Fly program.
Award-winning aerobatic pilot, Melissa Pemberton will amaze spectators this year with her high-energy and action-packed aerobatic routine. Collecting numerous flying awards in her aerobatic career, Melissa strives to be a role model and inspiration to young people and women everywhere, showing them that no dream is too big and nothing is impossible!
The Short Tucano is owned and operated by Lee Leet and is based in Louisville, KY. It is a two-seat turboprop basic trainer which was used by the Royal Air Force (RAF). In the early 1990s, this aircraft was selected as one of two RAF Tucano Demonstration aircraft. Its current paint scheme was received as part of the demonstration team. The aircraft was eventually transferred back to normal training service and later sold at an auction.
Wilbur and Orville Wright built the powered aircraft which made the first sustained, controlled flights right here in Dayton. In 1975, a project was launched to build a flyable replica of the original Wright “B” Flyer. No detailed construction drawings were kept of the original Wright B Military Flyer, so developers used the Model B in the National Museum of the Air Force as a template. Volunteers nicknamed the airplane, “Brown Bird” because of its color. The “Brown Bird” will take to the skies at this year’s Vectren Dayton Air Show Presented by Kroger!
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