Thursday, June 19, 2014

2014 Milwaukee Air & Water Show by the numbers

They're b-a-a-a-ck. 

But chances are you knew that already from the distinctive roar from the heavens.

After a four-year absence, the Blue Angels, the U.S. Navy's popular flight demonstration team, will be flying high at the 2014 Milwaukee Air & Water Show, which is back by air and by sea on the lakefront just north of downtown Milwaukee on Saturday and Sunday.

Last year's air show had been planned to include a performance by the fabulous Thunderbirds, but the Air Force's flight team was grounded by the federal sequestration. So it's been a couple years since the big guns have been in town.

With that in mind, organizers are expecting this year's show to be an even bigger draw than last year's — which is why they're urging folks going down to the lakefront to get there early before the formal 10 a.m. start. (The Blue Angels are expected to perform around 3 p.m. each day.)

To get you in formation, here's a look at the Milwaukee Air & Water Show by the numbers — for the show and for some of the performers in it. For a complete list of performers, go to

Ballpark/beachfront estimate for attendance for 2013's Milwaukee Air & Water Show, according to event organizers.

The F/A-18 Hornets that make up the Blue Angels team can fly at speeds of up to Mach 1.7 and beyond — that's about 1,294 mph.

How close together (in inches) the Blue Angels have been known to fly.

Number of Harrier jets — high-powered warplanes known for their vertical takeoff and landing capabilities — that are in civilian hands in the world. That refitted FA2 Sea Harrier, owned by Art Nalls, is making a rare Milwaukee appearance at the air show.

Number of former candidates for national political office — John McCain and James Stockdale — who flew Skyhawk jets during the Vietnam War. An A-4B Skyhawk jet will give a tactical demonstration as part of the air show, courtesy of the Warbird Heritage Foundation.

Number of members of the U.S. Navy Leap Frog Parachute Demonstration Team, made up of Navy SEAL and SWCC (special warfare combatant-craft crewmen) commandos.

How many parachutes, ropes and cables are used by wing-walker Tony Kazian as part of Dave Dacy Air Shows.

The horsepower of the engine for the Yak 52-TW, the Soviet-designed, Romanian-built trainer planes used by the AeroStars aerobatic team.

Number of degrees in a circle that "Malibu" Chuck Aaron rolls his Red Bull Stunt Helicopter.

The number of the U.S. president — George H.W. Bush — who jumped with the All Veteran Group, a team of parachutists made up of former U.S. Army Golden Knights, to mark his 90th birthday June 12. (President Bush won't be jumping at Milwaukee's air show, however.)

What: Milwaukee Air & Water Show

When: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, rain or shine

Where: At Lake Michigan, between Bradford and McKinley beaches

How much: Admission is free, but reserved-seating tickets also are available — a viable option, considering how quickly the best free spots get scooped up — $20 for adults, $10 for kids (free for those 5 and younger), available at ticket booths near the Northpoint custard stand at Bradford Beach.

Parking: There is parking in available Milwaukee County lots, including O'Donnell Park, as well some street parking in the area. Warning: With the Lakefront Festival of Art, another popular summertime draw, going on next door at the Milwaukee Art Museum, parking may be at a premium on the lakeshore Saturday and Sunday.)


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