Thunder and Lightning Over Arizona

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Kristine Legate
  • 355th Wing Public Affairs

Thunder and Lightning over Arizona Air Show, a free public event, is scheduled to take place from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Nov. 6-7, 2021, here.

The U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron “The Thunderbirds,” will be headlining the event alongside DM’s very own A-10C Thunderbolt II Demonstration Team and the Desert Lightning Team Combat Search and Rescue Demonstration to exhibit the U.S. military’s airpower capabilities.

“DM hasn’t hosted an air show since 2019,” said Senior Airman Caleb Spencer, A-10 Demo Team engine specialist. “We’ve been primarily performing at other locations, and we haven’t had the chance to practice much in Tucson this season, so we’re all really looking forward to performing here in a few weeks.”

While being widely known as an air show, the event is more than just that. Its goal is to recruit future generations for the military and inspire those who currently serve, the retired and the civilian community, all while displaying what the military is capable of.

“When I was 10 years old I went to an air show with my family at Lackland AFB, Texas,” said U.S. Air Force 2nd Lt. Alvin Nelson, 355th Wing Public Affairs media operations section chief. “I’ll never forget the first time I saw an F-16 Fighting Falcon fly. It zoomed across the airfield and sent vibrations through my stomach, it was an incredible feeling. My hope is that this year’s air show will inspire youth in the same way it inspired me.”

During the event, DM’s gates will be open to share with the community the integral part it plays in defending the nation. This event will give the public an opportunity to learn about DM’s aircraft and meet the Airmen that are responsible for leading and maintaining this U.S. military installation that supports six combatant commanders around the globe every day.

The event will also include performances from the U.S. Air Force F-35A Lightning II Demo Team, U.S. Navy’s F/A-18 Super Hornet Demo Team and Leap Frogs, along with many other aircraft.

Over 100 will be on display and perform during the event. Static displays will be parked along the flight line giving visitors the opportunity to tour and learn about specialize missions, like the KC-10 Extender, AC-130J Ghostrider and a B-1 Lancer just to name a few.

Food and beverages will be on sale at the event, and for children, there will be a kid zone play area with aviation-themed attractions – from a Thunderbird bounce house to a mechanical jet.

The event will be held in line with current Department of Defense and Center for Disease Control and Prevention guidance. Mask wear is encouraged, but not required – unless taking part in interior aircraft static tours.

For more information on the event, please visit: