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A gathering in Quebec

400Quebec City turns 400 this year and to help celebrate, they organized what is probably the best air show line up of this season.


August 5, 2008
By Brian McNair

400Quebec City turns 400 this year and to help celebrate, they organized what is probably the best air show line up of this season.

Five of the world’s best air demo teams were invited. The US Navy Blue
Angels, US Air Force Thunderbirds, Royal Air Force Red Arrows, and
Canadian Forces Snowbirds were all in attendance, only the French Team
was unable to attend.

The show started on Friday June 13th with a dusk performance of the Red
Arrows, silhouetted against the setting sun. The evening continued with
stunt planes, wing walkers, the CF-18 afterburner show and Fire Works.
It was a great start to the weekend.60a

On Saturday the show started with the playing of national anthems and
the Sky Hawks Parachute team jumping in with all three national flags.
Then paralyzed hang gliding entertainer, Dan Buchanan was winched to
altitude and put on a great show complete with pyrotechnics on the
glider. The first team to take to the skies was the US Navy Blue
Angels. They did a great job getting the crowd excited and wanting
more, and that is exactly what the Red Arrows gave them. For many
people in the crowd this was their first time seeing the Red Arrows and
they were not disappointed. They filled the sky with their red, white
and blue smoke and introduced the air show spectators to some unique
flight formations.

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dsc_0432aThe show continued with Skip Stewart and his modified Pitts S-25 stunt
plane, Gene Soucy and his wing walking partner Teresa Stokes and the
“Go Fast” jet pack demo. Next on deck were the US Air force
Thunderbirds. But shortly after they took to the sky it started to rain
and that ended the first day short.

Sunday morning didn’t look very promising with a steady rain still
coming down but as mid-day approached the clouds lifted and flying
started again. This time it was the Canadian Forces Snow Birds that
went up to show there stuff.

Canadians are very proud of their Snow Birds and they put on a great display.
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Next on the loud and proud list was the Canadian Forces CF-18 demo and
in the warm, humid air after the rain he was pulling lots of vapor.
Finally it was time for the Thunderbirds to get a second chance after
the rainout of the previous day. They went up and just like the CF-18
they were leaving vapor trails all over the sky. There was a small
pause in the show while they landed one of the jets for a mechanical
problem. But as the announcer stated this was not serious but necessary
for spectator and pilot safety. It did remind everyone how serious and
professional these pilots are about their job.

It was nice to see the pilots of the various teams joking around with
each other and forming new friendships with their peers in this
exclusive club. After all, they are not just fighter pilots; they are
the best, fighter pilots that each country has to offer. Thunderbirds,
Blue Angels, Red Arrows and Snow Birds, all at one show. Now that’s a
gathering.

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