A Patriotic Celebration of Historic Planes
MEDIA EVENT: 11:00 a.m. Monday, September 16th AWE (Aircraft Watch Event) Offers great visuals and interview opportunities with flight crew and airport officials. Media will have exclusive access to tour inside the aircraft upon arrival!
Hollister, Missouri—The sights, sounds, and stories of World War II aviation will come alive when the iconic Boeing B-29 Superfortress, FIFI, and the Consolidated B-24 Liberator, DIAMOND LIL, land at Branson Airport. The Bombers are accompanied by a P-51 Mustang, a T-6 Texan, a PT-13 Stearman and a T-34 Mentor. Presented by Branson Airport and the Commemorative Air Force (CAF), the AirPower History Tour makes stops at airports across North America each year. The public is able to view the aircraft, visit with pilots, purchase rides in the aircraft and tour the B-29 and B-24 cockpits.
“It’s a once in a lifetime experience to see and feel these airplanes as they rumble by you. For those who served in WWII, that rumble is the sound of freedom and service.” said Tom Forster, board member of the Branson Veterans Task Force. “The crew, the pilots, flight engineers, even the mechanics who kept them flying, understood their role. Sadly, we are losing so many veterans daily from our greatest generation. Events like this strive to keep their honor and commitment to Country alive for future generations.”
Getting up close and personal with the historic planes is not all that attendees will get to experience. Aerobatic Air Shows by legendary aerobatic pilot Mike Galloway, will take off Friday – 1 pm & 4 pm, Saturday – 11 am & 12:45 pm, and Sunday – 11 am & 1 pm. Area car clubs will be displaying classic and military autos. As well, music, great food and a flight simulator will be on site throughout the week. A portion of event proceeds and food sales will benefit the Branson Veterans Task Force and Civil Air Patrol Cadet Programs for area youth.
The event is open to the public starting Wednesday, September 18th through Sunday the 22nd from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Supporting aircraft will offer rides all five days. The B-29 flies on Saturday and Sunday at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. The B-24 flies on Saturday and Sunday at 9:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.
The planes will be staged on the Branson Jet Center ramp located at Branson Airport, 130 Wright Brothers Road, Hollister, Missouri. Daily access to the event is $20 for adults and $8 for children age 10 through 17. Ages 9 and under are free. The cost of rides range from $85 to $1,995 depending on aircraft type. Rides may be purchased at the event in advance at AirPowerTour.org where additional information about the experience may be found.
ABOUT THE CAF B-29 SUPERFORTRESS FIFI
The Commemorative Air Force (CAF) acquired FIFI in 1971 when a member found her at the U.S. Navy Proving Ground at China Lake, California. The airplane was rescued and restored by a group of CAF volunteers and has been flying for more than 45 years. Since 1974, FIFI has been traveling coast-to-coast each year honoring the men and women who built, maintained and flew WWII aircraft, and educating the next generation on their service and our history, attracting large crowds at every tour stop. The Boeing B-29 Superfortress was first flown in 1942. It began active service in the US Army Air Corp in 1944, and is best known as the aircraft whose missions over Japan helped bring an end to World War II. The B-29 also was used in the Korean War in the early 1950s and was a staple of the U.S. Air Force until 1960. Learn more about FIFI and her tour schedule at www.airpowertour.org
ABOUT THE CAF B-24 LIBERATOR DIAMOND LIL
Today, DIAMOND LIL is one of only two airworthy B-24s bombers in existence and is one of the featured aircraft in the CAF AirPower History Tour. The CAF has been bringing LIL to airports throughout the United States since 1968. In the fall of 2018, LIL returned to the skies after a three-year restoration. The Consolidated B‐24 Liberator, first flown in 1939, began active service in 1941 and was the most produced American aircraft of World War II, with 18,482 built. The Liberator was used in every theater of the war and for a variety of missions from long-range bombing and submarine patrol, to transporting high priority cargo and VIPs. Learn more about DIAMOND LIL and her tour schedule at www.airpowertour.org
ABOUT THE COMMEMORATIVE AIR FORCE
Through more than six decades of collecting and flying World War II aircraft, the CAF has become the world’s largest flying museum. Their fleet of over 170 World War II airplanes are assigned to unit locations across the U.S. and are supported by 12,000 volunteer members. Nearly all the aircraft are kept in flying condition, enabling people to experience firsthand the sight and sound of vintage military aircraft in flight. The CAF is dedicated to honoring American military aviation through flight, exhibition, education, and remembrance. To learn more about the Commemorative Air Force, please visit www.commemorativeairforce.org
ABOUT CIVIL AIR PATROL & CADET PROGRAMS
The Civil Air Patrol is a congressionally chartered, federally supported non-profit corporation that serves as the official civilian auxiliary of the United States Air Force. CAP is a volunteer organization with an aviation-minded membership that includes people from all backgrounds and occupations. Their three missions are Aerospace Education, Cadet Programs and Emergency Services. Located at Branson Airport, the local Table Rock Lake Composite Squadron MO147, has 65 members and growing. Along with over 15 STEM Programs the squadron will soon have its own Redbird Simulator to assist with aviation training and education. To Learn more visit: www.gocivilairpatrol.com and locally, www.capmo147.com
ABOUT BRANSON VETERANS TASK FORCE
The Branson Veterans Task Force is a 501 (c)(3) organization with a mission of recognizing veterans, fostering patriotism and educating the community on the accomplishments and the history of our veterans. To learn more visit: www.bransonveterans.com