The SkyHawks Parachute Demonstration Team returns to this year's Abbotsford Airshow, running Friday to Sunday. (Abbotsford News file photo)

Abbotsford Airshow flies high above the rest

Annual event runs Friday to Sunday at Abbotsford Airport

  • Aug. 10, 2018 12:00 a.m.

Promising the finest civilian and military aerobatic performances in the world, Canada’s premier aviation festival is back this weekend.

The Abbotsford International Airshow runs from Friday to Sunday at the Abbotsford Airport.

This is the 60th anniversary of the North American Aerospace Defense (NORAD) agreement and, to celebrate, the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) and the US Air Force (USAF) will perform a commemorative flypast in formation.

“This is pretty much the most unique bilateral defence partnership in the world,” said Dave Reith, operations manager.

The event kicks off with the Friday Twilight Show from 3 to 10 p.m., featuring the US Navy Blue Angels, the Canadian Forces Snowbirds, the CF-18 Hornet Twilight Demo and a fireworks finale.

Saturday and Sunday are full-day shows with flying events, attractions, exhibits and concessions. Gates open at 10 a.m.

The lineup includes award-winning civilian performers, including local resident Rob ‘Scratch’ Mitchell flying in the Acemaker T-33 Shooting Star Jet.

Other featured performances are demos from fan-favourite the A-10 Thunderbolt II, RCAF Search and Rescue, the USAF Heritage Flight and the SkyHawks Parachute Demonstration Team.

After a 15-year absence, the Blue Angels return to the airshow to co-headline with the Canadian Forces Snowbirds. The Blue Angels will fly all three days of the show.

With more than 14 acres of entertainment and interactive activities for all ages, ground attractions include a virtual reality arcade, static aircraft display, autograph book and the Science of Flight presented by Science World.

A new attraction for 2018 is The Grandstand: A Craft Beer Experience. This fenced-in 19-plus beer garden features DJ music between flying events, ground-level seating and a dozen craft breweries to sample.

Tickets to The Grandstand include airshow admission. Airshow tickets can be upgraded to The Grandstand at the gate.

Nightly camping, as well as full weekend campground passes, are available for all three days of the show.

Tickets are available online at abbotsfordairshow.com, at Save-On-Foods locations, and at the King Road entrance to the show.

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