OC Air Show Returns With Military Teams On Tap

OC Air Show Returns With Military Teams On Tap
The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds are pictured above performing at last year’s OC Air Show. The demonstration team will return this weekend, showcasing a combination of formation and solo maneuvers. Photo by Chris Parypa

OCEAN CITY – The OC Air Show returns to the resort this weekend, with U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds and a F-35 Lightning II demo team highlighting the performance lineup.

The OC Air Show will return to the skies above the Ocean City beach June 10-11. This year’s show will feature the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, a F-35 Lightning II demo team and a U.S. Air Force Heritage Flight, among other performers.

“This will be the 16th annual OC Air Show and each year it just gets better and better,” said Chris Dirato, director of public relations. “Air shows inherently are patriotic and family friendly, so that clearly brings folks back year after year. Like past years, we have another exciting lineup of performers scheduled so we encourage everyone to come out and watch these talented aviators, while enjoying the beautiful Ocean City beach and Boardwalk.”

This year’s OC Air Show marks the fourth destination of the Air Dot Show Tour, which will visit seven East Coast cities throughout the 2023 season.

Among the featured performers will be the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, which will fly the F-16 Fighting Falcon and perform a combination of formation and solo maneuvers at speeds of up to 1,000 mph. The demonstration will feature inverted rolls, close-formation flights and more.

The OC Air Show will also feature the F-35 Lightning II demo team. Flying the advanced stealth fighter jet, the team will demonstrate 12 different maneuvers, some of which will be performed as low as 200 feet off the ground at speeds exceeding 700 mph.

“Both the Thunderbirds and F-35 demo team have performed at the OC Air Show before, but they are fan favorites, which is why they are returning,” Dirato said earlier this year.

The two teams will also be joined by the U.S. Air Force Heritage Flight, showcasing the evolution of USAF air power. The program was created in 1997 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the U.S. Air Force.

“It incorporates fighters from World War II, the Vietnam War, the Korean War and other conflicts in which the USAF has been involved,” Dirato added.

The U.S. Navy F-18F Super Hornet will also take to the skies at this year’s air show. The jet  can perform virtually every mission in the tactical spectrum, including air superiority, day/night strike with precision-guided weapons, fighter escort, close air support, suppression of enemy air defenses, maritime strike, reconnaissance, forward air control and tanker missions.

The OC Air Show will also feature the A-10 Thunderbolt IIS, the Navy Legacy Flight and the Red Bull Air Force. The team is assembled from the most accomplished and experienced aviation experts and specializes in highly coordinated aerial jump demonstrations.

Other featured aircraft include the C-17 Globemaster III, the UH-72A Lakota, the E-2C Hawkeye and the L-39 Cold War Era Jet Demo. The West Point Parachute Team will also showcase its precision freefall demonstrations.

This year’s show will take place Saturday, June 10 and Sunday, June 11, with the program beginning at 11:30 a.m. and aerial demonstrations beginning at noon.

A good portion of the show is viewable from 6th Street to 26th Street, with the ticketed beach areas at show center ranging from 13th Street to 17th Street.

Tickets are available for the VIP and premium viewing. For additional information, or to purchase tickets, visit the OC Air Show website at ocairshow.com.

About The Author: Bethany Hooper

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Bethany Hooper has been with The Dispatch since 2016. She currently covers various general stories. Hooper graduated from Stephen Decatur High School in 2012 and the University of Maryland in 2016, where she completed double majors in journalism and economics.