Pittsburgh Stories and Tips

Thunderbirds

Thunderbird 2 Photo, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

For the 2005 Wings Over Pittsburgh airshow, the Thunderbirds were the main attraction. Each year it is usually either the Thunderbirds or the Blue Angels, and this year it was the former. The Thunderbirds are the demonstration team for the US Air Force with six F-16s that show the capabilities of the airplanes along with some cool maneuvers. Four of the jets fly together at all times while two fly solo and do head-to-head flybys and other surprise flybys. The show lasts about half an hour including take-off and landing, and it also takes a while for the pilots to actually get into the aircraft and taxi out, as there is a high level discipline and ceremony to the show.

The Thunderbirds fly the same show at every airport every time, so no matter where you see them it is the same thing. Being six jet air crafts, it does get quite loud and earplugs are worth taking. It is a lot of fun for the whole family, and they almost always perform at airshows, which means there are other demonstrations and attractions. I like airplanes more than the average person, but anybody would enjoy it. They are usually in Pittsburgh every year or two, as well as major airports across the country every summer--if you are near an airport where a performance is scheduled, check them out.

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