Sun 'n Fun Ready For Early Start

  • E-Mail this Article
  • View Printable Article
  • Text size:

    • A
    • A
    • A

This year's Sun 'n Fun International Fly-In and Expo will launch on Tuesday, March 27, less than two weeks away, turning the small airport in Lakeland, Fla., into one of the busiest fields in the world. The show is earlier than usual this year, as organizers try to avoid conflicts with other events, especially the Aero Friedrichshafen show in Germany, which attracts many of the same general aviation exhibitors. Starting next year, however, Sun 'n Fun plans to return to April dates through 2020. After last year's tornado, show officials worked to meet federal guidelines to ensure safety in case of stormy weather. The show is now officially "StormReady," with designated shelter areas and enhanced alert systems.

Among the thousands of aircraft at the show, FiFi, the only flying B-29 Superfortress, will provide rides to the public, at prices starting at around $570 and up. FiFi, which is operated by the Commemorative Air Force, also will be open for $5 cockpit tours. The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds will fly during the weekend airshow, and during the week, the afternoon show will feature many of aviation's best-known performers, including Patty Wagstaff, Michael Goulian, Julie Clark, and Chuck Aaron in the Red Bull aerobatic helicopter. Sun 'n Fun also will feature more than 500 exhibitors, a splash-in at nearby Lake Agnes on Thursday, a night airshow on Friday, and a balloon launch early Saturday morning. A free app, available from Sporty's, features fly-in information for pilots, schedules for events during the show, maps, an exhibitor list, and more. The Android version is available for download now, the Apple version is scheduled for release on March 15. AVweb staff will be at the show all week, bringing you daily news and product updates from the field.