Advertisement graphics courtesy by Melbourne Air & Space Show
Written by Nathan Wertheimer
If you have never been to an air show before now is your chance. This is one of the best airshows around in Central Florida area. Mark your calendar for March 24 & 25, 2018. Gates open at 9am and close 5pm. Experience the time of your life at this venue.
While at home planning your airshow day adventure, there are some items to bring. Don’t forget to bring sunscreen, sunglasses / goggles, a hat, comfortable cloths, poncho, blanket, folding chairs, earplugs / ear muffs, a photo/video camera, and great walking shoes. It is recommended not to wear sandals. One will be doing a lot of walking at this event. An added reminder to wear pants because of the various winds and sand may kick-up at anytime on the flight line and in other areas too.
Traveling from Orlando to Melbourne is just about a two-hour drive. It is worth the ride down to this air show. Get your GPS for the best travel route down to Melbourne International Airport. Expect heavy traffic going to and from the air show in the Melbourne area. Look for signage around the airport for available parking for the airshow. Some parking lots are pre-paid ahead of time. Visit the air show website for more information. It is recommended to arrive early for the best parking spaces available. Once they fill up you’ll be parking further from the air show entrance and a long walk to and from your vehicle.
Once you arrive at the front entrance, you’ll see a ticket table. It is best to purchase your tickets online for the VIP Flight Line, Photographers Pass row, and much more ahead of time. Some of the special VIP ticket packages have been sold out. Check website for availability. General Admission tickets are still available. Next, all attendees will be going thru a security checkpoint. Please check the air show website for items to bring to the air show. Some items maybe prohibited. Big bags and purses may not be allowed.
There will be a bunch of military and civilian static jets and helicopters on display on the tarmac. There are great photo opportunities to get up close photo to most of the aircrafts. Note some aircrafts are roped off and others you’ll be able to touch and walk-thru. Some attendees may have a chance to ask questions to the pilots standing by his or her aircraft. Many of the military pilots will be available for questions too. Some branches of the US Military will have recruiting booths at this air show.
The best part of the airshow is the aircrafts flying the sky. You’ll want to pre-plan where one can catch all of the action. Sitting on the fence line is not always the best spot to view the aircraft from. Unless you’ll be photographing the aircraft on the ground while they taxi. It is recommended to be in the middle of the airshow. Some attendees may experience neck strain while watching these aircrafts. Don’t forget to wear your sunglasses / goggles.
As a Photojournalist, I recommend bring just one camera with two lenses. Don’t worry if you don’t have a super long lens like the pros do. The lenses I recommend bring is a 70-300mm telephoto lens, and a 18-55mm lens. Or bring an all-purpose lens such as the 28-300mm lens. You’ll be using the 70-300mm lens for the air show in the sky and the 18-55mm lens for the static aircraft displays. Another option is to bring an external Speedlight flash for photos inside some of the aircrafts.
f your hungry at the air show there will be a variety of food vendors. Prices will vary depending on what you order. The food menu items are hamburgers, chicken, pizza, pretzels, and cold drinks, alcoholic beverages, and much more. It is not recommended to consume a lot of alcoholic while on a hot day on the hot tarmac. An individual may become sick with drinking an excessive amount of alcohol while in the sun. Drunk and disorderly conduct will not be tolerated at this airshow.
The special feature everyone wants to see at this airshow is the US Air Force Thunderbirds. These Red, White, and Blue F-16 Fighting Falcons will give attendees a spectacular show one has never seen before. Expect to see rolls, supersonic speed, low flight overs, a flyover delta formation, and much more. This squadron is comprised of eight F-16 jets. Plus, there is a crew of US Air Force Airman on the ground that supports these pilots in the air. The breakdown of this squadron is 12 Officers and 120 Enlisted Support Personnel.
Some of the other aerial performers are the B-2 Stealth Bomber, Socom Para-Commandos, B-25 Panchito, John Black, P-51 Mustang Demo, Playful Extra 330, Shockwave Jet truck, B-17 Memphis Belle . Find a good spot and watch all these aerial acts from 12pm to 4pm. Most of these aircrafts will perform many stunts that are synchronized to music. One might even here the Danger Zone song being played. Each air show is different every year.
Sorry, no pets allowed at this airshow. Service animals are welcome, but please be advised that the service animals may be distracted with the noise and other many things while at this event. Also, no smoking is allowed at the air show grounds. For other questions please visit the air show website. Please visit www.airandspaceshow.com .
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