Warbirds and Airshows
By David D Jackson

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America's Freedom Fest Warbird Photo Review
Warbirds at the Goshen Municipal Airport, IN - July 1, 2017

The Goshen Airshow is back!  And it was back with in 2017 with a vengeance, a new name, and an all star cast of warbirds.  Originally started in 1995 as the Goshen Airshow, it was renamed the Freedom Fest in 2000 when it was turned into a twilight 4th of July event.  Unfortunately the Freedom Fest had to stop the show in 2009 due to the poor economy, and the lack of sponsors.  The show at that time cost about $250,000, with $150,000 coming from corporate sponsors. 

America's Freedom Fest was an evening show that started just before 7PM, and then finished with a fireworks display after dark.  This was only the second time I have been to the show, the first time being in 1995.  It was great to be back up for this rejuvenated show, which was for all intents and purposes, a warbird show.  There was only one civilian aerobatic routine.

Below is a short review of some of the great warbirds at America's Freedom Fest. The weather that came through just before the show, and lingered afterwards, along with the time of the day, made for some different, and interesting photos.


My aviation day started at the Indianapolis Metropolitan Airport in Fishers, where my wife and I took one of our granddaughters to see B-17 "Madras Maiden".  It was on display and giving rides.  What I was totally clueless to the fact I would see "Madras Maiden" again that evening at Goshen.  The B-17 was not listed on the schedule for America's Freedom Fest. 


Also on display was the Tom Wood Aviation F8F Bearcat.  In talking with its mechanic, I found out it was also going to be at Goshen.  This was another warbird coming to the show that was not listed on its website.  I like surprises like this!!!


It took me two hours to travel the first 130 miles to the Goshen Airport.  It took another 50 minutes to go the last mile, as there was only one way in.  In 2008, the last year of the event, an estimated 23,000 persons attended the show.  It is a slow process getting that many persons through one entrance.  This part of Indiana has a large Amish population, and many of them came by bicycle and horse drawn carriage.  Note the darkening of some of the clouds.  They would bring rain just before the start of the show.


The F8F Bearcat on display at Goshen.


The Bearcat was one of five warbirds in this row that included two TBMS, an AD-1, and two P-51s.


Mike Gillian's FM-2 was also there.  This is the first time in five years that I have seen this aircraft. 


The show started on time, in spite of the rain that came through just before the show started. 


Most of the bad weather went to the north of the airport.  It would be dark gray, and even black, to the north for most of the show.


"Madras Maiden" inbound for her first airshow pass.  To the south the sky was blue with white puffy clouds. 


 

To the west, the sky was mostly clear, letting the sun shine its early evening golden hue on the aircraft.


America's Freedom Fest was able to have the F-22 come over in the evening for a Heritage Flight from the Battle Creek, MI airshow . 


Vlado Lenoch taxies back in after the Heritage Flight.  The F-22 returned to Battle Creek, and did not land.


Mike Gillian performed his normal excellent warbird demo in the FM-2 Wildcat.  It was great to see this again.


Mike rolling out on landing.


Another great surprise!  Dean Cutshall came over from Fort Wayne, and gave us multiple high speed passes in the F-100 Super Sabre.  I like these kind of surprises!!!


Tim Savage takes off in his TBM Avenger.  Tim is from nearby Roanoke, IN.


Brad Deckert came over from Peru, IL with his TBM.


John Shuttleworth, from Huntington, IN takes off in the Skyraider owned by the Warbird Heritage Foundation in Waukegan, IL. 


Tom McCord from Indianapolis flew the Beacat.  The three aircraft gave us multiple formation passes, and then did individual strafing passes. 


The Mig-17 rotates. 


The Mig-17 flies behind the folding wings of the Skyraider.  A big plus for the Goshen show is that the taxiway is right in front of the crowd.


The crowd to the west from my location.  Vehicles are now being parked at the end of the runway. 


The F-86 chased the Mig-17 around the field in a simulated Korean War dogfight.  The announcer failed to mention that the first combat for the Mig-17 was not until 1958.  At the end of the runway the crowd can still be seen coming in at 9 PM in the evening.


The end of the show for me.  My exit plan was to leave before all of the vehicles that took six hours to get parked started to depart.  There was still more warbird acts to come before the fireworks.  Next up was the Aerostars Formation Team and Bill Leff's night time T-6 routine.  But I was more than satisfied with the two hours of warbird flying that I witnessed.


 

 


 
Home  Indiana Museums    Indiana Tanks on Outside Display   The Beginning    Revisions   First Flight of P-38F Glacier Girl  
USS Theodore Roosevelt    WWII Aircraft Manufacturing Sites    Gateguards
 2007 Airshows   2008 Airshows  22009 Airshows   2010 Airshows    2011 Airshows    2012 Airshows   2013 Airshows   2014 Airshows    2015 Airshows  2016 Airshows    2017 Airshows 
Aviation Museums of the Pacific Northwest
   Display Helicopter Locations   CAL FIRE   PV-2 Harpoon Photos     F6F Hellcat Photos
   Warbird Sightings   WWII US Air-Air Victories   Guest Photos    Indiana Warbirds   Featured Photos  Other Items   Links

Historic Sites   Historic Forts   Historic Texas Independence Sites   Pre-Historic Sites   Historic Manhattan Project Sites   GM Heritage Center


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