Memorial Day weekend offers a unique experience for veterans, military, and those who honor them, as well as airshow enthusiasts. The Columbia Regional Airport will be hosting the airshow, an event that is free and open to the public.

The Salute to Veterans Memorial Day Weekend Celebration Airshow has come a long way since 1989. It began with a parade that featured flyovers of two WWII aircraft: a P-51 Mustang and a B-25 Mitchell. Prior to that, Memorial Day in Columbia was a small affair at the Courthouse. When Columbia-local Mary McCleary Posner returned to Columbia from a corporate career in New York, she decided something needed to change. 

Her father, a WWI veteran who set an altitude record on Armistice Day in 1918 in a Curtiss Jenny, had once told her if she ever figured out a way to say thank you to the men and women who had risked their lives to secure her freedom, that she should do it. The Salute to Veterans Corporation was founded because of that charge, and while it has grown in size and scope over the years, the mission has never changed. The theme for the show this year is a reminder to everyone of that original purpose – “Three Decades of Honoring and Remembering.” This year is also seeking to double the usual amount of military Honored Guests always headlining the show. Come on out and say thank you to these incredible men and women.

Starring in the airshow this year is the US Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt II aerial demonstration team, returning from active duty to an airshow schedule for the first time in seven years! The last time this aircraft flew in Columbia was in 2010, just before they were grounded. It doesn’t stop there – keep your eyes on the skies, Boone County – the show is also welcoming back the US Army Special Operations Command Black Daggers and the Canadian Armed Forces Skyhawks parachute jump teams! They will be performing during the two-day airshow weekend, as well as jumping into the Columbia College R. Marvin Owens Soccer Stadium during the Salute to the Armed Forces Celebration at the end of the Memorial Day Parade.

The spectacular WWII de HavillandVampire, the T-33 ‘Shooting Star’ jet, the breathtaking two-ship aerobatic performance of the Trojan Phlyers, and the 1948 Skyraider will all be at this year’s anniversary show, thrilling hearts both young and old as they zip across the skies in their tribute to those who served. Hearkening back to Posner’s father, this year’s celebration includes a Curtiss Jenny that is celebrating its 100th year of flight! 

If you prefer a more hands-on experience, the P-3 Orion and the enormous P-8 Poseidon (never before seen at this airshow!) will be on display and open for tours throughout the show weekend. Come on out and say thank you with us on May 26th and 27th from 9am-4pm at the Columbia Regional Airport. Admission and parking are FREE, and open to all. Parking is limited, so guests are encouraged to use the shuttle buses provided at the MU Trowbridge parking lot in Columbia, or at the Jefferson City Airport. To close the weekend, the organization hosts an annual parade in downtown Columbia on Memorial Day at 10am. For more information and the latest updates, please visit salute.org.

If you go....

Salute to Veterans Corporation invites the public to their two-day airshow at Columbia Regional Airport over Memorial Day weekend on May 26-27, 2018 from 9:00am to 4:00pm. FREE admission and parking!

What will be there?

Demo teams, aircraft, and events 

 ·US Air Force A-10C Thunderbolt II Tactical Demonstration – returning after 8 years!  ·United States Army Black Daggers Parachute Team  ·Canadian Armed Forces Parachute Team: The Skyhawks  ·WWII de Havilland Vampire aerobatic demonstration  ·Lockheed T-33 ‘Shooting Star’ aerobatic demonstration  ·1948 AD-1 Skyraider aerobatic demonstration  ·Trojan Phlyers T-28 aerobatic demonstration team    ·T-6 “Radial Velocity” Reno Racer – winner of the National Championship Air Races!  ·WWI Kansas City Dawn Patrol – 19 planes flying and on display  ·WWI Curtiss Jenny - flying and on display – 100th anniversary flight!  ·MU Joint Services Drill Team 

 

STATIC DISPLAYS OPEN FOR TOURS

USN VP-30 P-3C Orion USN VP-30 P-8 Poseidon – for the first time!

 

STATIC DISPLAYS

WWII Piper L-4 Grasshopper Cessna L-19 Bird Dog WWII P-51 Mustang C-172 Cessna Supermarine Seafire Mk. XV

 

MILITARY RECRUITING ASSETS

Air Force Special Ops Air Commando Experience (ACE) - the newest Air Force recruiting asset! 

 

OTHER HEADLINING EVENTS

 Annual Honored Guests and Volunteers Banquet in Southwell Arena at Columbia College Saturday, May 26th at 5:30pm. Check website for details and to purchase tickets! Wreath-laying Ceremony on Memorial Day, May 28th, at the Boone County Courthouse, at 9am. 30th Annual Salute To Veterans Parade on Memorial Day, May 28th, 2018, starting at 10am in downtown Columbia and ending at Columbia College R. Marvin Owens Soccer Stadium. The Salute to the Armed Forces Celebration at Columbia College will feature the arrival from the skies of the USA Black Daggers and Canadian Forces Skyhawks Parachute Teams.