Thunderbirds to take center stage at Luke Days | News

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The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds are scheduled to perform at Luke Air Force Base for the 2024 Luke Days air show March 23 to March 24.

The Thunderbirds squadron is an Air Combat Command unit composed of eight pilots (including six demonstration pilots), four support officers, three civilians and more than 130 enlisted personnel performing in 25 career fields.

The Thunderbirds pilots launch from the runway during the 2016 Luke Air Force Base Air Show.


After a hiatus due to the pandemic, the Luke Days air show is making a highly anticipated return. Luke AFB is planning to showcase the base to an audience of up to 300,000 people per day.

The Thunderbirds air demonstration is a mix of formation flying and solo routines. The four-aircraft diamond formation demonstrates the training and precision of Air Force pilots, while the solo aircraft highlight the maximum capabilities of the F-16 Fighting Falcon. The pilots perform approximately 30 maneuvers in a demonstration. The entire show, including ground and air, runs about an hour and 15 minutes.

The Thunderbirds were officially activated June 1, 1953, as the 3600th Air Demonstration Team at Luke AFB. Their first aircraft was the straight-winged F-84G Thunderjet, a combat fighter-bomber that had seen action in Korea. Early in 1955 the team transitioned to the swept-winged F-84F Thunderstreak.


Maj. Kevin Walsh, Thunderbird 7, meets with a special guest at Luke Air Force Base.


The Thunderbirds aren’t the only performers at this year’s event. The F-35 Demo Team is on tap, as is the C-17 Demo Team. The KC-135 Stratotanker and the A-10 Demo Team are part of the entertainment as well.

As for civilian entertainers, Team Red Bull, Ghost Writers, Ace Maker, Mini Jet Air Shows Ed Hamill and Folds of Honor are scheduled. 

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By Airman 1st Class Katelynn Jackson, 56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs , – Vivrr Local Results in news of type article , 2024-03-21 07:00:00
Tags: luke air force base, luke days, luke air force base events, luke days air show, things to do in the west valley, things to do at luke air force base, u.s. air force, u.s. air force air shows, u.s. air force thunderbirds

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