See The Airshow, And Watch The Thunderbirds Fly!

Last Updated on April 1, 2022 by Left Lane

The 2022 Wings Over Columbus Airshow put on a fearsome display of air might. Coming to Columbus Mississippi for just 2 days out the year. The Thunderbirds, and all the airshow teams put on an aerobatic display second to none. It was truly a privilege to witness some of the best pilots in the world letting their fuel drinking birds fly free in the sky.


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A Look Around The Airshow Grounds

Parking was crazy. Everybody from miles around came to watch the Wings over Columbus Airshow. Which started at 12p.m. I pulled into my parking space at 11:57a.m. By then I was already so far from the main entrance, I couldn’t even see the gate. Here’s a photo, from when I was already halfway to the main entrance. (That’s right Halfway)

Before I could make it all the way inside the entrance gate. The Airshow kicked off with an epic aerial parachuting display.

Video: Not long after the Airshow’s start, we had the Honorary Flyover from the current Air Force Students. As they work to earn their Silver Wings in their T-1 Jayhawks, and become the new Transport Pilots of Tomorrow

Top 15 Reasons You Should Visit the next Wings Over Columbus Airshow

Here’s the Top 15 Reasons you would enjoy the Columbus Air Force Airshow, and why you should plan on catching it the next time it’s in town:


1. Wings of Blue Parachute Team

Once the skydiver was in the air, a stunt plane circled the parachuter as he descended towards the ground.

Video: of the first member of the Wings of Blue Parachute Team as he jumped over Columbus Air Force Base. Being circled by a stunt plane drawing attention to the Airshows Official Start
Video: This captures the moment the rest of the Wings of Blue Parachute Team soared high above the crowd safely beneath their deployed chutes

After briefly pausing to watch the Wings of Blue Parachute Team kick things off at the Airshow. I resumed my walk across the parking area for the front gate.

2. Lockheed C-5M Super Galaxy

Upon making it to the main gate finally, the first thing that catches, and holds your attention is the massive Lockheed C-5 Galaxy military cargo transport aircraft.

Photo of the C5 Looming high above the main entrance of the Airshow. It has a very fitting nickname, it’s known as “Fred”… If you know, you know. If you don’t, you can CLICK HERE to find out why the C5 is called Fred 🤣
After entering the gates, they allowed you to walk through the massive cargo hold of the C5.
Photo as I walked through the Cargo Hold of this hulking monstrosity of a plane
Video: A 360 look around from the side of the C-5. Notice all the people in attendance for the Columbus Air Force Airshow

3. Food, and Drinks

Not long after entering the Airshow Gates, I located the Food Court, which was set up on base. Offering everything from Homemade Lemonade, to Funnel Cakes!

They had a selection of Adult Beverages on Site. You could choose from Coors Light, Miller Light, Yuengling, Michelob Ultra, Budweiser, or Bud Light
Photo of the lines at the Food Court at the Wings Over Columbus Airshow. You could choose from: Hotdogs, Hamburgers, Gyros, Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches, Italian Sausage, Chicken Fingers and Fries, Kids Meals, and Nachos
The amazing Lamb Gyro I had. The meat was very moist, and tender.

4. The Car Show

Once you were fed, and done snacking. You could ease over to the on-site Car Show.

1969 Camaro SS 396
1959 Chevy Apache Shortbed
1961 C1 Corvette Hardtop

5. The Helicopter, and Airplane Exhibit

They had variety of every sort of aircraft imaginable on exhibit for public viewing. Including both Military, and Civilian Aircraft.

Including this AH-64 Apache Attack Helicopter
This T-38C Talon which is used as an advanced training Jet for Jet Pilots
Of course this beautifully polished 1930’s American Airlines DC3, made by Douglas Aircraft Company. The Detroit Flagship

6. The Boeing E3 Sentry

Video: of the surprise flyover by the Boeing E3 Sentry. The Radar on top of the plane has over a 250 mile range. They are also known as AWACS meaning – Airborne Warning and Control System

7. The Aeroshell Aerobatic Team

As the Aeroshell Aerobatic Team took to the air in their modified AT-6 Texan aircraft. Which was is famous World War 2 training prop plane. You could distinguish their unique sound, caused as the props turn at near supersonic speeds.

The Aeroshell Aerobatic Team, flying their T6 Texan Aircraft in formation
Video: of the Aeroshell Team as they took off, allowing you to really hear those Pratt & Whitney engines as they work
The Aeroshell’s modified Texans were pumping out over 600HP

8. The A-10C Thunderbolt II

The A-10C Thunderbolt. can produce around 9000 pounds of thrust from its 2 Turbo Fan Engines. It’s built for durability in battle with Titanium Armor protecting the Aircraft.

An A-10 Thunderbolt is known as a Sub-Sonic plane. It can fly as fast as 450 mph, or lay attacks at speeds as slow as 90 mph, while still maintaining excellent maneuverability.

Photo of the A-10 making a pass over the crowd. It’s also known as the Warthog
Video: of the A10 Thunderbolt (or Warthog) putting on a fearsome display of firepower. During a reenactment of it firing the Massive 30mm Avenger Gatling Gun. With Armor piercing rounds. It’s also a Tanks worse nightmare, in active battle it’s capable of attacking the same target every 10 seconds, or until the threat is eliminated
Video: of the A-10 Warthog as it performs a slow barrel roll over the audience at the airshow

9. CAF Pacific Dogfight Demo

The F4U became known as one of the most fierce defenders of the United States during World War 2. When the Japanese attacked in their B5N Torpedo Bombers.

American Pilots in the F4U, also known as the Bent Wing Fighter responded at the Wars start. They were so effective in battle, they amassed an 11:1 kill ratio. It was one of the planes Japanese Pilots feared most during World War 2.

It’s fearsome effectiveness, earned it the nickname Whistling Death ☠️. Because of the sound created by it’s bent wing design when diving during an attack.

The F4U – Bent Wing Fighter, a.k.a Whistling Death as it flies low over the crowd
Video: of the Bent Wing Fighter demonstrating an attack dive. It’s powered by a Pratt & Whitney Double Wasp Engine, pumping out 2000 HP. Propelling it to a top speed of around 440 mph

10. Boeing C-17 Globemaster

The Boeing C-17 Globemaster has set over 30 different World Records. It has a top speed of 350 mph. It’s also extremely quit for a plane of it’s size, for a tactical advantage when sneaking into enemy territory.

It has a Wingspan of over 170’ feet across, it’s tail, is over 4 Stories Tall. It’s capable of landing on all sorts of surfaces, including Sand, and Ice. It has successfully landed on all 7 continents.

The Boeing C17, also known by its nickname the Moose. Has 4 Pratt & Whitney Engines, with a 2000 nautical mile range. These are the same engines that power a Boeing 757
Video: of the Boeing C-17 Globemaster showing just how short of a runway it’s capable of taking off on. It’s designed to take off on runways short as 3500’ feet, but it has been known to take off in less then 1600’ feet

Boeing C-17’s are also capable of landing at unsupported airfields, because the plane is capable of reversing under its own power. It can also land using less then 1000’ feet of runway.

11. Lockheed T-33

The Lockheed T-33 was developed from the Lockheed P-80. Which was one of the earliest U.S. Jets built in 1944. The T-33 has a Top Speed of around 623 mph.

Lockheed’s T-33 produces around 5600 Pounds of torque. With a height ceiling over 45,000’ feet. Another thing unique to the T-33 is the cockpit canopy is also the air brake for the plane, being opened after landing to help slow the jet.

Photo of the Lockheed T-33, also known as the Shooting Star, Straight Wing, or T-Bird as it makes a low pass over the audience, and the Thunderbirds
Video: of the Lockheed T-33 Shooting Star putting on a Bombing demonstration, after exiting a huge loop to drop a bomb

Back in 1948 Lockheed was given just 150 days to create a new functioning Jet Fighter. They did it in just 143 days. The T-33 stayed in active duty around the world defending various countries until 2017.

12. The Phillips 66 Aerostars

Flying in their “Extra 300L” Aircraft the Phillips 66 Aerostars put on a show when they hit the skies above Columbus Air Force Base.

Photo of the Phillips 66 Aerostars showing a little love to the Columbus Mississippi audience as they performed during the Airshow. Drawing a huge heart with their smoke trail from their planes
Video: of the Phillips 66 Aerostars as they perform some dizzying G-Force inducing stunts

13. The All Veterans Parachute Team

The All Veterans Parachute Team showed their jumping, and parachute control skills. By gliding in on air columns with the grace of soaring eagles.

The leader of the All Veterans Parachute Team, Sunny Dale as he sails through the sky preparing to land at Columbus Air Force Base
Video: of Sunny Dale as he comes barreling through the atmosphere like a Meteor. Leaving a trail of smoke in his wake after jumping from the plane
More members of the All Veterans Parachute Team as they sail onto Columbus Air Force Base

14. Rob Holland

Rob Holland isn’t just any run of the mill Pilot. He’s the 5 Time World Free Style Aerobatic Champion, 9 Time U.S. National Aerobatic Champion, and the 10 Time U.S. National Freestyle Aerobatic Champion.

The plane that Rob Holland is flying in, is a MXS-RH Aircraft (there were maybe only 13 of them ever made in the whole world). The plane is made of Carbon Fiber, and producing 385 Hp. Rob is also an Honorary Blue Angel.

Rob making one of his mind boggling low passes
Video: A Must Watch! Rob Holland shows why he is the 5 Time World Champion, and 10 Time National Champion in Aerobatic Competitions
Photo as Rob showed the crowd at the Columbus Mississippi Air Force Base some love

15. USAF Thunderbirds

Putting on a fearsome aerobatic display of air might, it was easy to see how excited the Thunderbirds had the crowd at Columbus Air Force Base.

Photo of all 6 of the USAF Thunderbirds, wing tip, to wing tip before they flew

All the way from Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas, Nevada. The USAF Thunderbirds wowed the audience in a deafening roar of power. The sound produced by their engines penetrates your bones, and causes the ground to vibrate under your feet.

Video: allowing you to hear the roar of the Thunderbirds Jet Engines as they roar to life. Bringing the crowd to their feet

The Thunderbirds are the Premier Demonstration Team for the United States Air Force. They have been show casing Military Jet Power for 69 years.

The Thunderbirds fly F-16 Supersonic Jets, made by Lockheed Martin. There also known as the Fighting Falcon. Their capable of climbing 30,000 feet in under a minute.

Photo of the Thunderbirds as all 6 of them flew in Delta Formation. They fly at speeds over 500 mph, at times being only 18” inches apart
Video: of the Thunderbirds as they flew directly over head, before splitting off into the distance
Video: Watch as 1, become 4! During this mind boggling formation. Then the audience is surprise buzzed from behind by a 5th Thunderbird

F-16 Fighting Falcons have a Top Speed of around 1500 mph. They can climb to altitudes over 50,000’ feet.

The Pilots of the Thunderbirds are active duty Air Force Pilots, and if the need arises. They can have their Supersonic Jets ready for battle in just 72 hours!

The Conclusion

After 5 hours of nonstop aerobatic action. The Wings Over Columbus 2022 Airshow came to a close. After thoroughly enjoying myself. I couldn’t help myself when I left the Air Force Base. I just had to walk through Fred one last Time 🤣.

A Photo of the Crowd at Columbus Air Force Base as we prepared to leave, as I made a beeline directly for the big C5

What were the Top 15 reasons to attend the Airshow? Here’s a quick recap of all 15:

If all this Airplane talk has you ready to book your next Trip: Just Click Here to get all your required Travel Documents in one place!

The Roving Gypsy®

Thanks for reading my Travel Blog, I hope you enjoyed this photographic tour of the Columbus MS, Airshow as much as I did. Like what you read, and want more, or have a suggestion for me? Follow, Share, and Comment to let me know.

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