View Full Version : Students get sneak peek at the weekend air show

05-03-08, 05:25 AM
Students get sneak peek at the weekend air show
May 3, 2008 - 12:48AM

Much more than airplanes flying overhead will be on hand today and Sunday at the New River Air Station air show.

More than 600 students from 11 area schools took a sneak peak Friday at what the general public will see over the next two days at the Sounds of Freedom Past and Present Air Show.

Students from Northside High, Dixon Middle and Swansboro Elementary schools and several others climbed over Humvees, sat in helicopters and played with disarmed explosives.

Marines with the Marine Wing Support Squadron 272 answered student questions about equipment ranging from 81 mm mortars to M1 Abrams tanks.

Brenda Robertson's seventh grade students from Beulaville School in Duplin County played with bomb disposal robots and were allowed to steer some of the robots that normally look for and deactivate improvised explosive devices in places like Tikrit and Baghdad, Iraq.

"The Talon robot is for bomb recon and disposal," said Master Sgt. A. Page, with the MWSS 272. "It is sent down-range so we don't have to go.'

The public will be allowed to get a hands-on look at some of the Marine Corps' most high-tech equipment like that robot and the M40A3 sniper rifle that can "engage a man at 1,000 yards."

The Marine Air-Ground Task Force will demonstrate its coordinated use of close air support, armor, artillery and infantry forces with the audience in the middle of the action, said Staff Sgt. Angela Mink, spokeswoman for New River Air Station.

The show will also feature a commercial business expo with more than 100 booths, arts and crafts, and a variety of food and drink vendors. Also, Coca-Cola will sponsor a kiddie corner.

Booths will include Beasley and Nextmedia with multiple radio stations, Armed Services recruiting tents, Maui Wowi, military units and military memorabilia, Mink said.

Lawn chairs and blankets for seating are encouraged. Do not bring pets, coolers, wheeled vehicles / toys, glass containers or alcoholic beverages.

Beer will be available from vendors on the air show grounds.

The event is free to the public. Gates open at 9 a.m. each day. Photo identification is required for all spectators 17 and older. For more information about the show, visit www.newriverairshow.com.

Contact crime reporter Lindell Kay at lkay@freedomenc.com or 910-554-8534. Read Lindell's blog at http://onslowcrime.encblogs.com.

Today and Sunday

9 a.m. gates open

11:30 a.m. remote control aircraft show

12 p.m. U.S. Army Special Ops ‘BLACK DAGGERS'

12:10 p.m. Aeroshell Aerobatic Team

12:16 p.m. Gary Rower Vintage Airshows

12:29 p.m. Marine Air Ground Task Force Demonstration

12:59 p.m. F-18 Demonstration

1:15 p.m. Michael Wiskus Lucas Oil Pitts

1:28 p.m. Art Nalla Air Shows

1:40 p.m. Greg Poe Air Shows

1:53 p.m. F-16/P-51 Heritage Demonstration

2:18 p.m. Dale ‘Snort' Snodgrass Air Shows

2:36 p.m. Patty Wagstaff Air Shows

2:50 p.m. U.S. Army Special Ops ‘BLACK DAGGERS'

3:10 p.m. Aeroshell Aerobatic Team

5:00 p.m. Air Show ends


05-04-08, 08:15 AM
Air show brings thrills
Comments | Recommend
May 4, 2008 - 12:19AM

The Saturday crowd at the New River Air Station air show came alive with cheers when AH-1W Super Cobra helicopters swooped overhead and bombed enemy targets while Wagner's "The Ride of the Valkyries" blasted from loud speakers.

"‘I love the smell of napalm in the morning,'" Greg Beal, a Jacksonville teenager who wants to join the Marines, quoted from what he calls his favorite movie, "Apocalypse Now," as a pillar of black smoke rises in the distance.

Beal attended the New River Sounds of Freedom Past and Present Air Show with his mother, Wanda Scott, who had purchased a set of earplugs and was sitting in a chair reading Jeffrey Archer's "A Prisoner of Birth."

"We came last year," she said. "My son talked about it for almost the whole year. We are back again. He loves it."

Others in the crowd were beginning to get into the show as the Cobras made a second pass and fired off more simulated rockets. Targets in the distance exploded and black smoke mushroomed up from the flames.

"This is the coolest thing I've ever seen," said Tommy Royal, 13, of Wilmington. "I am going to be a helicopter pilot."

As the simulated attack continued and bombs exploded downfield from the grandstand and sponsor tents, the crowd's excitement grew.

When MV-22 Ospreys carried Marines into the "front lines," the crowd erupted with applause that rivaled the wail of the Osprey's twin rotors. After securing the area, the Marines walked to the crowd to a standing ovation and a warm welcome.

Then the rock music cranked up and sound-barrier-breaking jets like the F-18 Hornet rattled spectators' molars and pounded eardrums.

"This is great!" Tommy shouted at his father, Jim Royal, a construction foreman from Wilmington. "I want to be a fighter pilot."

Royal said his son has picked out several career paths lately and was on his third or fourth choice since the air show began.

"This is cool, though," Royal said as his son pulled him by the arm to look at the inside of a Coast Guard cargo plane.

Kids of all ages enjoyed the sights and incredibly loud sounds of the air show.

As civilian pilots took to the air doing barrel rolls, flips and loops, even the most seasoned-looking flight crew members took a moment to stop what they were doing and enjoy the show.

By 1 p.m., most in attendance did not seem to mind that the UH-1 Huey demonstration at noon was called off because of high winds. Children kept themselves busy crawling over tanks, Humvees, helicopters, airplanes, jeeps and jets.

"They look like ants in an ant farm," Shaun McLean said. He was at the air show with his grandson and admitted he had trouble keeping up with the 9-year-old. "He is too young to run around by himself, but look at the fun he is having."

Children and adults quizzed Marines about their particular pieces of equipment and learned how far an Abrams M-1 tank can fire - deadly at about 3,000 meters; how fast an AV8B Harrier jet will fly - 550 knots, calibrated air speed (that is really fast, the crew said); and how heavy a Browning .50-caliber machine gun is - 84 pounds.

Sandwiched between the tanks and tarmac were a bevy of food vendors offering everything from pizza to Wendy's hamburgers to barbecue. Several tents with military memorabilia and other items ran three rows deep behind the VIP tents.

The air show repeats today with gates opening at 9 a.m. and closing at 5 p.m. Flying demonstrations begin at noon.

The event is free to the public. Photo identification is required for all spectators 17 and older. For more information about the show, visit www.newriverairshow.com.

Contact crime reporter Lindell Kay at lkay@freedomenc.com or 910-554-8534. Read Lindell's blog at http://onslowcrime.encblogs.com.


05-05-08, 06:11 AM
I couldn't get to the air show this year since I was working at Spankys...so a few from the Air Show came to visit us...

A few from the team Vipers, yes I know the air force, but the Marines made sure they were in a Marine Bar.....





05-05-08, 07:52 AM