Fairchild ready for SkyFest 2014

Gallery: Robyn’s Thunderbird Flight

SkyFest returns to Fairchild Air Force Base this weekend after several years away, and features a variety of aircraft from across the country including the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds.

It’s an opportunity to see aircraft that you probably wouldn’t see otherwise like a C-5 Galaxy from Travis Air Force Base in California. The largest cargo transport in the Air Force, it’s so massive its roughly 70 feet from the pilot’s window to the ground.

“This is a pretty amazing aircraft. See these behind you at night. Usually with the wings out so they can slow down for us.,” Captain Brian Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez will be busy this weekend serving as the air boss out on the flight line.

“These guys are some of our hardest working guys on base right now, our transient alert,” he explained.

The Fairchild flight line is busier than usual this weekend with airmen tidying and planes of all shapes and sizes from around the country flying in to Fairchild.

“So now we are kind of getting into the heavies row here, of course our pride and joy the KC-135,” he said as he pointed out one of Fairchild’s own tankers.

“Special tie for the community. The KC-135 … it’s an amazing plane,” he added.

You’ll get the chance to climb aboard the refueler, check out Army helicopters as well as a B-1 Lancer bomber, just to name a few aircraft. Gonzalez hasn’t seen a SkyFest since he’s been stationed here

“We just don’t have a whole lot of people that were here like you said in 2010 so we have to rely a lot on our civilian partners to try and remind us of what took place back then, but a lot of work has gone on and we are just excited to showcase the mission set here at Fairchild,” he said.

Fairchild tried to pull off an air show last year but the sequestration shut those plans down.

“We went right after it this year because Spokane deserves to see American airmen telling their story,” 92nd Air Refueling Wing commander Colonel Brian Newberry said.

Newberry is excited about this weekend to say the least.

“We can expect some good sunshine and some smiling faces. The only other thing I ask you to bring is just a little bit of patience because when that many people show on up with Highway 2 it’s going to take some time,” Newberry said.

If you do make it out to base this weekend remember no alcohol or backpacks are allowed.

Gates open at Fairchild at 9 a.m. Saturday with air show performances starting at 11 a.m. The air show will be free and open to the public both Saturday and Sunday. For more information on what aircraft will be on display at Fairchild this weekend click here.

For all the details on show information and at what times different performances will be happening, check out Fairchild’s interactive guide to SkyFest 2014 here.