The fantastic weather means that Florida hosts a large number of air shows and fly-ins, many of which are free to attend, especially the beach air shows. The Florida air show season typically runs from mid January to November with most shows in either the spring or the autumn (fall).
Though not air shows as such, the Wings of Freedom Tour by the Collings Foundation, the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) AirPower History Tour and the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Aluminium Overcast Tour and Ford-Tri-Motor Tour often bring a number of warbirds to Florida each year and over the space of a couple of months they visit a number of regional airports throughout the state. This is an opportunity to see real vintage and World War II aircraft in flight rather than just as static museum exhibits. For a fee, you can even get a ride in one of them.
A couple of Florida’s air museums like the Valiant Air Command at Titusville (Space Coast Warbird Airshow, formerly TICO Warbird Airshow), the Florida Air Museum in Lakeland (Sun ’n Fun Fly-In and Convention) and the nearby Fantasy of Flight museum at Polk City host annual air shows.
Air Demonstration Teams visiting Florida in 2019
Two of America’s top military aerobatic display teams, the United States Air Force Thunderbirds flying Lockheed (General Dynamics) F–16 Fighting Falcons and the United States Navy Blue Angels flying Boeing (McDonnell Douglas) F/A–18 Hornets regularly perform at some of Florida’s Air Shows.
Whilst the Thunderbirds are based at Nellis AFB in Nevada, the Blue Angels are actually based at NAS Pensacola in Florida’s Panhandle supported by a Lockheed C–130T Hercules affectionately known as ‘Fat Albert’. Fat Albert’s party trick was a JATO (jet assisted take off) which unfortunately stopped in 2009 when the supply of jet rocket packs was expended. In May 2019 Fat Albert was retired as it had reached the end of its service life and is being replaced by an ex Royal Air Force C–130J Super Hercules in Spring 2020.
It is likely the Blue Angels will also transition to F/A–18E/F Super Hornets in 2021.
United States Navy Blue Angels
For 2019, the Blue Angels are due to appear at NAS Key West, Lakeland Sun ’n Fun Fly-In and Convention, Fort Lauderdale Air Show, Pensacola Beach Air Show, Jacksonville Sea and Sky Airshow and finally the Blue Angels Homecoming Air Show.
In 2020 their show schedule includes MacDill AFB, Vero Beach, Pensacola Beach and the Blue Angels Homecoming Air Show.
When the Blue Angels are ‘at home’ they often perform practice sessions that are open to the public typically between March and October. There is even a chance to grab an autograph.
Their full display schedule and practice sessions calendar can be found on their website.
United States Air Force Thunderbirds
During 2019 the Thunderbirds will be again perform a flyby at the Daytona International Speedway for the annual Daytona 500 in February and the Florida International Air Show in November. In 2020 they are scheduled to appear at Sun ’n Fun, Fort Lauderdale, Miami Beach and the new Orlando Sanford Air Show.
Other International Teams
The Canadian Snowbirds Demonstration Team] fly the Canadair Tutor CT–114 and sometimes venture south. In 2012 they appeared at the Wings and Waves Air Show at Daytona Beach, in 2016 at the Fort Lauderdale Air Show 2016 and in 2017 they returned to the Fort Lauderdale Air Show 2017. There are no plans to appear in Florida in 2019.
In 2017, the French national display team, The Patrouille de France, flying 8 Alpha Jet trainers made a rare USA appearance and displayed at both the Melbourne Air & Space Show and Sun’n Fun Fly-In in April.
In 2019 the British Red Arrows display team, are planning a North American tour but at this time are not expected to display in Florida.
Florida Air Shows 2019/20 at a glance
|Dates||Florida Air Show Name||Location|
|January 18-February 3, 2019||Wings of Freedom Tour 2019||Various|
|January 23–26, 2019||U.S. Sport Aviation Expo||Sebring Regional Airport|
|January 26, 2019||Aerospace and Aviation Day 2019||Orlando Sanford International Airport (Million Air Hanger)|
|February 17, 2019||Daytona 500 Flyover (USAF Thunderbirds)||Daytona International Speedway|
|February 23, 2019||Planes, Trains & Automobiles||Plant City Airport|
|March 2, 2019||Plane, Trains & BBQ||Wooten Park, Lake Dora, Tavares|
|March 15–17, 2019||Space Coast Warbird Airshow 2019 (formerly TICO Warbird Airshow)||Space Coast Regional Airport, Titusville|
|March 29–30, 2019||Marvel of Flight Fly-in & Expo||DeFuniak Springs Airport|
|March 30–31, 2019||Tavares Seaplane-A-Palooka Fly-in||Wooten Park, Lake Dora, Tavares|
|March 30–31, 2019||Gulf Coast Salute - Tyndall AFB Air Show - CANCELLED||Tyndall AFB, Panama City|
|March 30–31, 2019||NAS Key West Southernmost Air Spectacular||Boca Chica Field|
|March 30–31, 2019||Melbourne Air & Space Show||Melbourne International Airport|
|April 2–7, 2019||Sun ’n Fun Fly-In and Convention||Lakeland Linder Regional Airport|
|April 27, 2019||Cross City Airport Fly In||Cross City Airport|
|May 4–5, 2019||Fort Lauderdale Air Show 2019||Fort Lauderdale|
|May 25–26, 2019||Miami Beach Air & Sea Show 2019||South Beach, Miami Beach|
|July 10–13, 2019||Pensacola Beach Air Show 2019||Pensacola Beach|
|October 26–27, 2019||Jacksonville Sea and Sky Airshow||Jacksonville Beach|
|October 26, 2019||Tavares Monster Splash Seaplane Fly-In||Wooten Park, Lake Dora, Tavares|
|November 1–3, 2019||Florida International Air Show||Charlotte County Airport, Punta Gorda|
|November 1–3, 2019||Stuart Air Show 2019||Witham Field, Stuart|
|November 8–9, 2019||NAS Pensacola Open House - Blue Angels Homecoming Air Show||Sherman Field, NAS Pensacola|
|November 8–10, 2019||New Smyrna Beach Balloon & Sky Fest - CANCELLED||New Smyrna Beach Municipal Airport|
|November 14–16, 2019||DeLand Sport Aviation Showcase||DeLand Municipal Airport|
|January 25, 2020||Aerospace and Aviation Day 2020||Orlando Sanford International Airport (Million Air Hanger)|
|February 16, 2020||Daytona 500 Flyover (USAF Thunderbirds)||Daytona International Speedway|
|March 28–29, 2010||McDill AFB Tampa Bay AirFest 2020||McDill Air Force Base|
|March 31-April 5, 2020||Sun ’n Fun Fly-In and Convention||Lakeland Linder Regional Airport|
|April 25–26, 2020||Vero Beach Air Show 2020||Vero Beach Municipal Airport|
|May 2–3, 2020||Fort Lauderdale Air Show 2020||Fort Lauderdale|
|May 23–24, 2020||Miami Beach Air & Sea Show 2020||South Beach, Miami Beach|
|July 11, 2020||Pensacola Beach Air Show 2020||Pensacola Beach|
|October 16–17, 2020||NAS Pensacola Open House - Blue Angels Homecoming Air Show||Sherman Field, NAS Pensacola|
|October 31-November 1, 2020||Orlando Sanford Air Show 2020||Sanford International Airport|
Key: TBC - To be confirmed.
This information is correct to the best of our knowledge but you should always check with the show organisers before making a trip as shows sometimes get cancelled or rescheduled.
If you do have any corrections or additions to the list of Florida air shows noted above, please do not hesitate to contact us. Last updated: October 6, 2019.