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Thu, Jul 20, 2023

Top Ten CAF AirVenture 2023 Attractions

Wonders in the Past Perfect Tense

EAA’s annual AirVenture fly-in is the largest event of its kind in the world. The weeklong show/exhibition/hootenanny has been called aviation’s family reunion, and since its 1953 founding, has grown from 21 planes and 150 pilots and onlookers to upwards of ten-thousand aircraft and six-hundred-thousand annual attendees.

Year after year, AirVenture is graced by a veritable who’s-who of aircraft manufacturers, operators, organizations, and adherents. Among these is the Commemorative Air Force (CAF)—a Texas-based non-profit dedicated to the preservation and display of historical aircraft. Comprising some 13,000 members across more than seventy units, the Commemorative Air Force operates the world’s largest fleet of airworthy warbirds.

The scale of EAA’s AirVenture is daunting. Aviation and aerospace attractions and demonstrations abound—each more fascinating and absorbing than the last. To ensure parties bound for Oshkosh don’t miss the myriad and memorable machines and presentations the CAF has up its proverbial sleeve, the organization has compiled the following Top Ten list of its AirVenture 2023 offerings:

Gathering of Corsairs: A congress unlike any other of Vought’s storied, WWII Era, F4U Corsair fighter aircraft. AirVenture 2023’s gathering will include the CAF Airbase Georgia’s FG-1D Corsair and be held in honor of Jesse Brown, Tom Hudner, and the men of VF-32 in Korea.

APWO Forum and Press Conference: AirVenture attendees will enjoy learning about the mission and members of the Association of Professional Warbird Operators (APWO).

The CAF Tent: The CAF’s hospitality tent in Warbirds offers respite from the sun, refreshments, chow, and chat with CAF staff and special guests the likes of WWII pathfinder pilot Dave Hamilton.

CAF Aircraft: The CAF intends to display the following aircraft at AirVenture 2023: B-25 Devil Dog, B-25 Miss Mitchell, P-51 Red Nose, SBD Dauntless, LT-6 Mosquito, T-34 (Airbase Georgia), P-51 Tuskegee Airmen (Red Tail Squadron), P-51 Gunfighter (Larry Lumpkin Sponsor Group), AT-6, SNB BOB (Big Oily Beast), BT-13, C-45 Bucket of Bolts, AT-6, T-34 (Wisconsin Wing), FG-1D Corsair.

Night Air-Show: While no CAF aircraft are slated to partake in the night show, a number of the organization’s member pilots, such as Matt Younkin and his Twin Beech, will perform thrilling aerobatic displays. AirVenture night air-shows will take place on 26 and 29 July.

CAF Warbird Tube Live: CAF Warbird Tube Host and longtime AirVenture announcer Steve Buss will grant attendees a glimpse into the announcer’s booth, where he will chat with special guests such as CAF President Hank Coates, EAA Director of Communications Dick Knapinski, Pro Pilot Jim Zazas, and Editor of Aerospace Stephen Bridgewater.

AT-6 Nella at Phillips 66 Tent: CAF’s WASP AT-6, known as Nella, will be on static-display at the Phillips 66 tent near Boeing Plaza.

CAF RISE ABOVE Traveling Exhibit and Tuskegee Airmen: AirVenture attendees are invited to visit KidVenture and see the CAF RISE ABOVE Traveling Exhibit. The films CAF RISE ABOVE: Red Tail and CAF RISE ABOVE: WASP will be shown. What’s more, two actual Tuskegee Airman will be on hand.

Meet up with CAF Friends: AirVenture affords CAF members opportunity to meet and reconnect. Members are reminded to wear their CAF uniform shirts that they may be more easily discernible to their contemporaries and recognized for the active parts they’ve chosen to play in helping to educate, inspire, and honor through flight and the preservation of its living history.

Warbirds In Review: An unparalleled AirVenture presentation series featuring historic aircraft and the owners, fabricators, maintainers, and pilots by whose efforts subject machines remain airworthy.  

In addition to the aforementioned points of interest, CAF Airbase Georgia plans to offer rides in its P-51D Mustang Red Nose, SBD-5 Dauntless, LT-6 Mosquito, and T-34 Mentor.

FMI: www.commemorativeairforce.org 

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