Yes, I know, true aviation fans would cringe at how I refer to P-40 Warhawks and other vintage planes. But they all have so much character and history it is hard to see them as just “planes.” Their windows are like wise eyes that have seen history unfold.
This weekend we did our annual trip to the Planes of Fame Airshow in Chino. It is usually the same weekend as Avalon Ball on Catalina Island, I’ve found, so you can dance on Saturday and view vintage warbirds on Sunday, as it runs all weekend. We love it as it has all of the classic era planes, plus a little modern afterburner for that rush. The best of both worlds.
This year’s show celebrated 100 years of naval aviation. The Planes of Fame Airshow has some stellar planes covering everything from pre-World War II to the Korean War to present. Some of the highlights for me include the P-40 Warhawk (my Flying Tiger favorite), B-25 bomber, FM2 Wildcat, and the TBM Avenger. No, I don’t know how to name these planes by sight. I got the air show program to help me with that. But I love everything about Golden Era planes. I like their classic lines, the erratic chug as they are waiting to taxi, their grace in the air. Sometimes I swear I have too much testosterone in me, as I really do enjoy this airshow.
Towards the end of the day, they got all of the planes that had flown throughout the day up in the air at the same time. What a showcase of airpower!
Of course at the end they had an F-15 showing off its moves – very impressive. I never knew a fighter jet could do what it was doing. Hubby Dearest was impressed too.
The show concluded with what is called the Heritage Flight, where the state-of-the-art Air Force F-15 flew alongside a classic P-38 showing the evolution of the Air Force. The F-15 had to slow down so much to keep pace with the older plane – it felt like it would fall out of the sky. Have to say, it is a very moving display. I’m such a geek!
Anyhow, even though the Planes of Fame Airshow is once a year, the Planes of Fame Air Museum holds monthly living history days with seminars and often end with a flight demo of the plane being featured as part of the talk. And you can always go and visit the stellar museum. I think they should have a hangar dance. I’d go!