Daytona Beach, Fla., Oct. 5, 2012 – Skies over the Atlantic Ocean will get louder, faster and more exciting Oct. 13-14 with Embry-Riddle’s Wings & Waves Air Show.
The free event from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day is the only air show in the United States to host three jet demonstration teams including the world-renowned U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, returning favorites The Canadian Forces Snowbirds and the only civilian-owned team in the U.S., the Black Diamond Jet Team.
But there’s more at the family-friendly show as aerobatic performers, sky divers and historic military aircraft will soar oceanside in front of the Hilton Daytona Beach Resort at Ocean Walk Village. The newest addition to the performer line-up includes The New Jersey Air National Guard with a fly-by in the KC-135 Stratotanker.
On the shore, Embry-Riddle will host the “Education Zone” in the Bandshell featuring student robotic and environmental group demonstrations, athletics, Alumni Relations and the Jet Dragster.
The air show, which wraps up a week-long celebration of Embry-Riddle’s Homecoming, features performers with ties to the university including a former professor, a former flight instructor and several alumni. They include Embry-Riddle Prescott alum Major J.R. Williams (lead pilot No. 5) of the Thunderbirds; Daytona grad and former flight instructor Doug “Tut” Demko of the Black Diamond Jet Team; world-record holding skydiver Cheryl Stearns, GEICO Skytyper lead solo pilot Steve Salmirs; and former Daytona Beach campus professor Tim Plunkett. Embry-Riddle sponsored champion aerobatic performer Matt Chapman also joins the group.
“I am always excited when I return to my alma mater Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, in the great city of Daytona Beach!” said Steve Salmirs, a Daytona Beach campus grad.
This year’s featured performers include:
- U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds – Now in their 59th year of wowing audiences with their combat fighter pilot skills, the elite 130-person squadron deemed the USAF's "Ambassadors in Blue" represents nearly 700,000 active duty, guard and reserve airmen serving at home and abroad – including two team members who are Embry-Riddle alums and another graduate tapped for the team later this year. The demonstration is a mix of six aircraft performing formation flying and solo routines. www.afthunderbirds.com
- Canadian Forces Snowbirds – The iconic Snowbirds Demonstration Team (431 Squadron) composed of approximately 80 members of the Canadian Forces and the Royal Canadian Air Force will perform only once in Florida this year – and this is it. The Snowbirds’ pilots and aircraft technicians spend the winter months at their home base in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Canada practicing more than 50 five-, seven- and nine-plane formations. The Snowbirds fly the Canadair CT-114 Tutor, a Canadian-built jet that was used by the Canadian Forces as a basic pilot-training aircraft from 1963 until 2000. www.rcaf-arc.forces.gc.ca/snowbirds.
- Black Diamond Jet Team – Making their first appearance at Embry-Riddle’s Wings & Waves, the Lakeland, Fla.-based aerobatic civilian-owned jet team will fly two L-39s. The team recently performed in Cocoa Beach with Embry-Riddle alum Jerry “Jive” Kerby doing a solo T-33 performance. www.blackdiamondjetteam.com
- GEICO Skytypers – A flight squadron of six vintage WWII airplanes performing precision flight maneuvers, the Skytypers are the only civilian squadron currently appearing at air shows flying WWII aircraft, the SNJ-2. Of the 11 SNJ-2 airplanes still in existence, the team uses six. www.geicoskytypers.com
- F-18 Tactical Demonstration – This aerial demo features the Strike Fighter Squadron 106 (VFA-106) flying the Navy’s newest tactical aircraft, the F/A-18 Super Hornet.
U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, Canadian Forces Snowbirds and Black Diamond Jet Team Headline Oct. 13-14 Air Show.
ER is sponsoring aerobatic pilot Matt Chapman, and two high-tech Embry-Riddle training aircraft, a Diamond DA-42 and a Cessna 172, will be on display.
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