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Thunderbirds to perform at Kirtland Air Force Base in May

Airmen assigned to the United States Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron "Thunderbirds" conduct of the Thunderbird Diamond formation on Jan. 9, 2019, at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev.

CORY W. BUSH/U.S. AIR FORCE

By ALBUQUERQUE (N.M.) JOURNAL Published: January 30, 2019

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (Tribune News Service) — Kirtland Air Force Base has announced a free open house and an air show featuring the Air Force Thunderbirds aerial demonstration team on May 18.

The last show almost three years ago drew about 42,000 people.

The “Kirtland Air and Space Fiesta” will feature a STEM and Space Pavilion containing displays and hands-on demonstrations by the Air Force Research Laboratory, the Space and Missile Systems Center and Air Force Space Command.

More details on the Kirtland event will be made available in the coming weeks, officials said in a news release.

The most recent KAFB air show, on a Saturday in June 2016, was part of the base’s 75th anniversary celebration.

Dozens of aircraft, including helicopters, bombers and massive cargo planes, were scattered across the tarmac of the base. Crews for the various types of aircraft stood by to answer questions about the equipment.

Aerial performances will include a stunt-flying exhibition.

The Thunderbirds were scheduled to perform in 2016, but canceled their 75-minute performance after one of the jets crashed during a U.S. Air Force Academy commencement ceremony attended by President Barack Obama. The pilot ejected safely.

For more information on the Thunderbirds demonstration team and their 2019 schedule, visit afthunderbirds.com.

Expect no parking on the base. Previous air shows included plenty of nearby parking, with regular shuttles to the show. The air shows usually include vendors selling food and drinks.

©2019 the Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, N.M.)
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