Jul. 4—ANDERSON — So many people showed up at Anderson Municipal Airport for the second annual air show that some had to be turned away.
More than 4,000 attended the Monday night show, according to Brian McMillen, manager of the airport.
But that estimate didn't include those who watched from nearby Mounds State Park or those who gathered along the sides of Indiana 32, which runs past the airport.
McMillen attributed the throngs to excitement about the air show — and the free admission on Fourth of July eve for the air show and the Chesterfield town fireworks that followed.
"It's something you don't get to see every day," McMillen said of the air show.
Four planes took flight, including a Pitts Special flown by Bob Richards, who performs in about a dozen air shows a year. It was his second time at the Anderson show.
Richards noted that the intricate aerial tricks performed by the pilots requires both preparation and the ability to adjust on the fly, literally.
"Sometimes you have to make changes as you're in the air," he explained. "There's certain maneuvers that need a certain speed or a certain altitude. If you don't have that speed or that altitude, then you have to change it up and do something else."
Richards said it was great to see so many people enjoying the show. He expressed hope that he and the other pilots could keep the audience entertained until Monday night's fireworks began.
A few local dignitaries were present, including former state Rep. Terri Austin and Anderson Mayor Thomas Broderick Jr.
The mayor, reportedly, was escorted to the airport by police after being stuck in traffic along Indiana 32. He told McMillen the traffic was backed up all the way to Anderson University, three miles away.
Food vendors were present, including Kona Snow Cones, Greek's Pizza, and Food Vault. A VIP area was set up with a bouncy house for the kids.
Show planes sat on the ramp for public viewing, including a 1943 Fairchild Primary Trainer used to train pilots during World War II, according to David Johnston, who manned the plane Monday.
The air show ended after 9 p.m., followed by the Chesterfield fireworks show, which began about a half hour later.
Every year the City of Anderson tries to coordinate Fourth of July week events with the Town of Chesterfield, according to Broderick.
"We wanted to make sure we support Chesterfield in what they're doing," the Anderson mayor explained. "We always work closely with them.
"They always use our facilities (the airport) to set them (fireworks) off, and it makes for a great location for several thousand people to come out."
Follow Caleb Amick on Twitter @AmickCaleb. Contact him at [email protected] or 765-648-4254.
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