Warbirds return for training flights at county airport


A rare 1945 Gloster Meteor will be among WWII planes flying in formations July 20-22 at the Warbird reunion the weekend before the Experimental Aircraft Association fly-in at Oshkosh. - Submitted photo A rare 1945 Gloster Meteor will be among WWII planes flying in formations July 20-22 at the Warbird reunion the weekend before the Experimental Aircraft Association fly-in at Oshkosh. - Submitted photo Look Up July 20 through July 22! Sheboygan is not under attack.

The high power radial engine and classic military jets Warbirds have returned for training.

Every year the weekend before the EAA Oshkosh Air Adventure Fly-in, pilots from all over United States, Canada (and even Europe) arrive at the Aviation Heritage Center of Wisconsin, Sheboygan County Airport, to sharpen their Formation Flying skills.

Photographers and airplane enthusiast also come for the historic Warbird reunion. The public is invited to watch, hear and experience this unique event. It is all free, sponsored by the Aviation Heritage Center of Wisconsin, with help from North American Trainers Association (NATA), the Classic Jet Aircraft Association (CJAA), Sheboygan County Airport and Burrows FBO.

Meals and snacks are available for purchase courtesy of Rotary Club volunteers.

Like back in Korean War times, you will be able to watch up to 18 post WWII-era 1425 horsepower radial engine T28s flying in one “Big Wing” Formation as they thunder over the Sheboygan airport.

The formations of Classic Jets, (Korean War to present day fighter and trainer jets), from all around the world, will also practice their precision flying skills.

Of special interest are the very rare British Gloster and Viper Jets from the late 1940s!

To hear the big radial engines fire up and watch the puffs of smoke as the rough running engines smooth out and run like a swiss watch, is an experience one won’t soon forget. Imagine over a dozen engines doing that all at the same time!

Each historic aircraft on the ramp has a unique story how they survived the airplane bone yards and scrappers for the last 70 plus years to be in Sheboygan. Often, they are in better condition than when they left the factory. The pilot owners will tell you they are just the temporary keepers of these historic aircraft. Some pay over $1000 (to $4000 for some jets) per hour to fly and maintain their rare aircraft.

However they feel it is worth it to honor those that flew and maintained them in the past, to help keep our freedom. Several of the aircraft have combat experience, bullet holes and damage during the time served, such as in the Secrete US Wars, Vietnam and Laos.

All times are tentative subject to change and weather dependent:

Friday July 20, (Arrivals and a very busy and intense day for the pilots)

8:00 am Pilot Ground School and Briefing starts

9:30 am – First T28 and Jet Formation Sorties, 2 ship and 4 ship flights

Noon – Lunch (Rotary)

1 to 5 pm Formation Sorty Flight, 2, 3 and 4 ship

Saturday July 21 – (Practice and Evaluation of formation pilots)

Pancake Breakfast by the Rotary

8:00 am Pilot Briefing start

9:30 T28 and CJAA Flight sorties, mostly four ship

Noon Lunch Rotary

1:30 First T28 Trojan Big Wing Flight (Up to 14 T28s), …CJAA 4 and larger ships flights

2:30 t0 5:30 More Flights, Pilot Evaluation, Warbird on ramp maintenance and repair as needed

Sunday July 22 (Final Day of Preparation for EAA Air Venture Formation Flights and for a few a chance to pass evaluation to receive their “Formation Wing Card” of Formation Lead Card.)

Pancake Breakfast

8:00 am Pilot Ground School and Briefing starts

9:30 Four ship evaluation and practice flights begin

Noon lunch

1:30 pm Big Wing Flight Practice for Air Venture Arrival

2:30 -4 pm Big Wing Flight Practice

4 PM AHCW closes to public for special event set up

5:00 pm AHCW Bar opens to pilots, supporters and volunteers


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