Touch-and-gos. Pyrotechnics. Barrel rolls. Helicopter rescues. Skydiving.
If the prospect of seeing any of these aeronautical feats gets your blood pumping, then boy, have we got a roster of Texas-sized events for you.
Airshows have had a long run inTexas, whose skies and horizons have lured pilots since the dawn of modern aviation. Not long after a crowd of Houstonians paid a dollar each to witness French flier Louis Paulhan’s flight on February 19, 1910, according to photographic preservationist Story John Sloane III, Moisants International Aviators of France brought a touring group to Houston January 27–30, 1911. Local aviators put together their own event in November of that year.
Soon, the world would become embroiled in a war that tested their growing knowledge of powered flight, and acrobats and barnstorming pilots traveled the U.S. showing off newly acquired skills and improved flying machines.
Today, aviation fans have opportunities across the continent to witness elite military units such as the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels, the U.S. Air Force’s Thunderbirds, and the Canadian Forces Snowbirds demonstrate maneuvers. They can see vintage warbirds, state-of-the-art rotorcraft, gliders, and other distinctive craft from past and present. They can meet pilots, see exhibitions of planes and gear on the ground, buy merch, take photos, bond with likeminded souls.
Texas’s climate accommodates airshows year round, so we’ll get you started with a roster of events from every heritage trail region. For more, visit calendars at airshowstuff.com or milavia.net.
And to enhance your experience, especially if you’re making a first outing, airshow aficionado Rob Wubbenhorst of Houston provides some useful tips at www.fighterpilotpodcast. com/musing/how-to-enjoy-an-airshow .