Teams of military fighter jets, civilian stunt planes and historic bombers are joining forces to bring the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach roaring back with high-flying trickery this Memorial Day weekend.
The weather forecast is clear for both days during show times. Since last year’s show saw the event’s second-highest attendance at 404,012, about 200,000 spectators are expected to pack Jones Beach State Park for the show. Headlining this year’s air show is The Thunderbirds, a U.S. Air Force aerobatic team made of six F-16s that showcase their precision by flying both solo and in diamond formation.
“It’s a special weekend for us, just to remember the sacrifices that many people have made for our country,” Captain Angelina Urbina, a Thunderbirds pilot, said Friday during final preparations.
The Thunderbirds, the world’s third-oldest formal flight demonstration squadron, last flew in the Jones Beach air show in 2015. They will be sporting the F-16 Fighting Falcon—an $18 million, 19,700-pound fighter jet that can travel up to 1,500 mph. The squadron will be closing the show on both days of the event, starting at 4 p.m.
There are a long list of other teams to see as well. The 106th Air National Guard Rescue Wing, which perform combat search and rescue missions, will be appearing, as well as the Golden Knights, the U.S. Army Parachute team.
The Bayport Aerodrome Society, who provide a “living museum” by flying antique aircrafts, will also make an appearance. Melville resident and daredevil David Windmiller will be performing aerobatics in extremely high altitudes. Also joining these performances are the GEICO Skytypers, showing off a low-altitude performance while demonstrating skills and maneuvers used during World War II training, and the Warrior Flight Team, a charity who provide career opportunities to veterans.
The Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach is scheduled for 12-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Fans are encouraged to arrive early for best seats and parking. There is no admission fee, but parking is $10. For more information visit airshow.jonesbeach.com