The EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2011 air show, “The World’s Greatest Aviation Celebration” opened on July 25 and will run through Sunday, July 31, 2011. The annual event is holding a spectacular grand finale for the closing three days of the show, with entertainment from sunrise to well past sundown. EAA AirVenture Oshkosh is held Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, which is abour 130 miles northwest of Chicago, Illinois.
Slideshow: Pictures from EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh
Among the weekend highlights at Oshkosh is the first public showcase anywhere in the world of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner on Friday, July 29, and an action-packed Super Saturday presented by Southwest Airlines on Saturday, July 30, which will feature the widely popular Rockwell Collins Night Air Show and Daher-Socata Fireworks preceded by country star Aaron Tippin in a concert presented by FedEx.
As part of a special “Salute to Veterans” reunion day with the Disabled American Veterans on July 29, all veterans and active military personnel in attendance are invited to participate in a veterans’ parade beginning at 2 p.m. and concluding with special recognition on ConocoPhillips Plaza.
Gary Sinise, actor and veterans advocate, will be back for an encore performance on Friday night. Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band close the day with an evening concert that starts at 8:00 p.m. The concert is expected to draw thousands of spectators to Theater in the Woods as it did in 2010.
WomenVenture recognizes women pilots on Friday, as part of the “Salute to Veterans.” A group photo session will be at 10:30 a.m. at ConocoPhillips Plaza.
George Lucas, director of the “Star Wars” and “Indiana Jones” franchises, will make his AirVenture debut on Friday, July 29, when he introduces a preview of his upcoming feature film, “Red Tails.” This movie, set for release in 2012, tells the story of the Tuskegee Airmen, the first African-American pilots to fly in a combat squadron during World War II.
On Friday evening, Gene Cernan, EAA member and “the last man on the moon” during Apollo 17, and Dick Gordon, command module pilot of the second manned mission to land on the moon, Apollo 12, will introduce the evening’s feature film, “Apollo 13.”
A mass hot air balloon launch will be held early Saturday morning, will take off at 6:00 a.m. “Warbirds Extravaganza” expanded afternoon air show with pyrotechnics will start at 3 p.m. On Saturday night, Aaron Tippin in concert will be presented by FedEx at the Theater in the Woods starting at 6:30 p.m.. The Saturday night finale will be the Rockwell Collins Night Air Show and Daher-Socata Fireworks, approx. 8:45 p.m.
The closing air show is on Sunday at 2 p.m. Look to the skies for the World’s Greatest Aircraft Departure Show, approx. 4:30 p.m.
Daily admission to the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh is $37 for adults and $30 for veterans and active military personnel. Admission for children ages 6-18 is $20 (free on Sunday, July 31, when accompanied by paying adult), and children age 5 and under are admitted free throughout AirVenture. For additional information, please see the EAA AirVenture website.