Precision jet team, skydivers headline final Aspen Air Show
Air Show ’99, perhaps Aspen’s last air show for a number of years due to upcoming airport construction, will take to the sky tomorrow.
The air show, featuring the Snowbirds, Canada’s top precision jet team, will be held Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. Air Show ’99 is dedicated to children, and all children under the age of 18 will be admitted free.
Leading off the show will be Joel Zane and his Airborne Skydiving Team, with their 640-square-foot American flag. Other attractions will include a World War II Grumman Wildcat and a Russian Sukoi 26 aerobatic plane. A performance by the 69th Battalion Special Operations Group will feature pyrotechnics and a synchronized aerial display with four different planes.
Air Show director Kim Bracher explained that the show was scheduled on a Tuesday in fall rather than a summer weekend, a time that would be expected to draw a larger audience, because that’s when the Canadian team was available. The Snowbirds expected to be traveling between two weekend shows in larger cities, and offered Bracher the opportunity for a booking.
The straight-winged aircraft flown by the Canadian group are slower and more maneuverable than those used by the American teams, the Blue Angels and the Thunderbirds, and more suited to a show in mountainous terrain. And while the U.S. military precision teams are restricted to a standard show for all venues, the Snowbirds can alter their show to conform to Aspen’s shorter runway and mountainous terrain.
Admission for adults is $8 in advance. Tickets are available at Aspen Drug in Aspen and at Sundance Drug and Liquor in Snowmass Village. Admission at the gate will be $10.
Air Show ’99 viewers are urged to take advantage of free parking at the Buttermilk parking lot and ride shuttle buses to the airport.
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