Who loves airshows? I DO! One of my favorite hobbies is frequenting the many areodynamic showcases that occur in the tri-state area. I am also an avid Blue Angels fan, so when I heard that the Angels were making an appearance at the Star-Spangled Sailabration, which takes place here in Baltimore from June 13th-19th, I was so happy I could do a barrell roll! If only I had a fighter jet…
The rumors are true! As part of Baltimore’s salute to the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812, otherwise known as Star-Spangled Sailabration, the Blue Angels flight demonstration team will be performing in Baltimore’s first ever airshow on Saturday, June 16th from 1-4pm and on Sunday, June 17th from 1-4pm. These awesome fighter jets will perform their routines over the Middle Branch River, just south of Fort McHenry. The actual start time can depend on the weather, so check the website the day of the performance for any updates.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Blue Angels, it is the Navy’s flight demonstration team and consists of a squadron of sixteen F/A-18 Hornets that perform complex, choreographed maneuvers in air shows all over the country. These fighter jets are the real deal. Although each one has minor modifications that will allow it to perform more acrobatically in an airshow, they can be combat-ready within 72 hours if needed.
The primary purpose of the Blue Angels is recruitment; thousands of spectators are awed by the capabilities of these skilled pilots and the Navy has found that to be an important enlistment tool. I have attended at least ten Blue Angel performances and it’s thrilling every time. A photo I snapped at one of their shows a few years ago is below.
If you want to learn more about the Blue Angels, please visit the Navy’s dedicated website. I could talk about the Angels all day, but for now, I’m returning the the Sailabration topic, because that’s my job 🙂
Celebratory events for the “Sailabration” are kicked off by a welcome ceremony hosted by Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and the arrival of dozens of tall ships and naval war ships on the 13th. These vessels will remain in the harbor until June 19th to conclude the festivities with their departure. In between that will be numerous activities including concerts, festivals, cultural performances, children’s activities and fireworks.
While Fort McHenry is the star of this show, other popular Baltimore venues; Harborplace, the Aquarium, Meyerhoff Symphony Hall and Martin State Airport will host some of these events as well.
I hope many of you will take the opportunity to join in this historic bicentennial celebration, but if you don’t make it there, I will be attending the festivities and will provide a full run down of the event with photos in a future column. Until then, Fly High and Sail On!