Historic Parade of Flight, San Diego, CA

By | February 13, 2011
Planes filled the sky for the 100th Anniversary Parade of Flight in San Diego last Saturday, February 12, 2011. If you are into airplanes, you would have been in heaven this day, as the flyovers lasted for over 2 hours, with one kind after another kind of airplane zooming high overhead and filling the air with the reverberating noises of flight.

Centennial of Naval Aviation Flyover

Lots of different kind planes filled the sky during the 100 year anniversary celebration of naval aviation.

People were everywhere! I arrived late to Seaport Village, and the throngs were immense, with everyone staring up at the sky. (This was all well and good for the people sitting down, but many were walking and looking up, which made for precarious navigation.)
People Everywhere

I was in Seaport Village, San Diego, and it was more crowded than I have ever seen it. People everywhere!

Crowds and a Statue

Crowds of people gathered to watch the historic event.

I alternated between sitting on the sea wall and the various piers, and walking around to get different views of the aerial displays. I was glad I moved, because I was able to see a sample rescue by a Coast Guard helicopter.
A Dramatic Rescue at Sea

The Coast Guard did a demo sea rescue for this hapless soul who ejected from his airplane accompanied by red flare clouds.

The USS Midway, a local naval museum, was absolutely jam-packed with people on the upper decks, watching the event. This would have been the perfect place to be for the best views of the planes, because some of them swooped really low over the ship, doubled back, and swooped low again. And there was an announcer on board, giving extra historical information and explanations of what the people were seeing.
Helicopters Over the USS Midway

Helicopters swooped low over the crowds gathered to watch.

Here and there, I was able to hear announcements and people talking about the type of aircraft flying overhead. SNB Kansan. F6F Hellcat. B-17 Flying Fortress. T-2 Buckeye. C-12. T-34C Turbo Mentor. T-45 Goshawk. None of these names mean a thing to me, but I know that some people were incredibly impressed. I couldn’t help but think of a number of my younger brothers who would have been absolutely enthralled at all of this!

The finale was a mass CVW-9 flyover which included E-2C, C-2, FA-18 Hornet, FA-18 Super hornet, and EA-6B. (I feel like I’m talking in code right now.)
Mass CVW-9 Flyover

Lots of different airplanes, all flying in formation. I think there's a bird in this picture, too.

 This was the biggest flyover event since World War II, from what I hear. Super, super awesome if you’re into the navy or military or airplanes or history or loud noises or huge crowds or beautiful, warm, sunny San Diego February days.

* Note: in the interest of dramatics, the very first picture in this post is a Photoshop compilation of six different photographs. The very last picture is one actual photograph.

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5 thoughts on “Historic Parade of Flight, San Diego, CA

  1. Jennifer Skoog

    Ev!! Congratulations on posting! 🙂
    This looks like quite the fun event despite everything. Also, thought came to mind that I bet those Alaskan Coasties wouldn’t mind being re-located to sunny SanDiego. AND I talked to Nate too and told him the “plan”…he didn’t seem to mind!

  2. Anna

    A moment into your video, Eric said that the helicopters were refueling. Now you know:) Looks like a pretty awesome show to watch!

    1. Ev Post author

      That’s what my twelve-year-old brother told me, too, so it must be true. 🙂 I had no idea, which shows how much I know about planes!

  3. Norah

    Saw the USS Midway when we were in San Diego, I wish we could have seen the flyovers though looked really cool! Aaron and I are jealous of the show you got to see!

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