California Capital Air Show 2017

In September, Mather Field hosted another great air show for the Sacramento area. Each year they host a photography tour which provides a unique opportunity for photographers to get on the other side of the airfield for better lighting. On arrival day, we were treated to multiple passes of a U-2 Dragon Lady before landing.

During the air show, there was plenty of flying and static displays to keep all the spectators happy over the beautiful weekend. The show opened with the national anthem and jumpers from the Patriot Parachute Team. An F-15 from the California ANG based out of Fresno made several passes while new cadets were taking their oaths. A P-51 Mustang and USCG C-27 Spartan made fly-bys as well.

As homage to the Korean War, an F-86 Sabre took to the skies with a Mig-15. Both planes made several passes while chasing each other and trading the lead position to simulate the dogfights from that era.

One of the greatest surprises was an extremely rare visit by the E-4B NOAC, “National Airborne Operations Center”. The radio came alive with the callsign “Chaos”, and shortly after it appeared on the horizon. It was a great sight to see considering the Air Force has so few of them.

Beale AFB sent 4 of their black T-38s to make a couple passes, and an A-10 flew a heritage flight with a P-38 Lightning. One of the highlights of the day was the US Navy TACDEMO team with the F-18 Super Hornet, which is always a crowd pleaser.

In between all the military flights were performances by Kent Pietsch, Bill Stein, and a water drop by a Metro Fire Huey. On Sunday, an Air National Guard C-130 came by and did a MAFFS water drop as well.

And finally, the Patriots jet team flew their aerobatic routine to wrap up the day. Thanks to Bruce Boehm for arranging the photo tour this year.

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