Offutt Air Show on August 25-26th: Helpful Tips for Visiting!

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Update: Cancelled for Saturday, 8/25/12.

One of my favorite events of the summer is the Offutt Air Force Base Defenders of Freedom Air Show.  I love hearing the sound of the aircraft overhead, walking through various amazing aircraft on the ground, and watching my children’s amazement and joy while sitting in a huge helicopter!  This free event will be held August 25-26th from 9am-5pm.  There is not a published schedule of events due to the possibility of delays, schedule swaps, and availability of fly-bys.

Highlights

Visitors can walk through awesome Static Displays and visit with Airforce personnel.

Amazing Performers including USMC AV-8B Harrier Demo, USN F/A-18 E/F Super Hornet Demo, the US Army Golden Knights Parachute Team, plus many more!  Occasionally, special military aircraft will do surprise fly-bys, even sometimes flying over my house several miles away!

Food and souvenirs are available for purchase at many Vendors.

Additionally, visit with several Exhibitors, and enjoy a Kids Zone with a BMX Bicycle Stunt Demo Team.

Security

The security requirements in place at the Air Show are for our safety.  All individuals and vehicles entering the base are subject to search.  Please be patient as it might take a little longer during peak hours.  You may leave and re-enter as needed, but you will have to go through the security checkpoint again.

No coolers, backpacks, tote bags, large camera bags, large purses, pets, or bicycles are allowed.  Small purses and fanny packs are allowed, but are subject to approval and hand search by gate security personnel.  It is recommended to pack light as if you are going to the airport.  Offutt AFB is not responsible for items left in vehicles in the parking areas.

What To Bring

Visitors can bring chairs, camera (only small camera bags), strollers, wagons, and small diaper bags, all which are subject to hand search at the gate.  Good walking shoes are recommended.  For little ones, many people have also brought headphones since it can be loud.

Water, drinks, and food must be hand carried and are subject to approval and hand search by gate security personel.

Unfortunately, with typical August weather, it can feel very hot on the tarmac.  Remember sunscreen, hat or sunglasses for your kids, and umbrellas (if you are not able to secure a perfect spot under a large aircraft’s wing for watching the performances.)

Directions and Parking

Visitors are strongly encouraged to use the convenient shuttle services that are available in various locations in Bellevue.  Please be patient, as there can be long lines during peak hours or at the conclusion of the day’s events.  There also is limited parking available at the base.  Be prepared to walk a bit to the gate, or ride a shuttle which is also available from the parking areas to the gates.

See answers to more Frequently Asked Questions here.  Looking forward to seeing you at the Amazing Air Show!

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What are your favorite tips and helpful hints when visiting the Air Show?  Please share with other readers so we can all have the best experience!