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Tampa Bay AirFest wraps up at MacDill Air Force Base

From Para-Commandos to the famous U.S. Navy Blue Angels, the Tampa Bay AirFest dazzled thousands.

TAMPA, Fla. — The weekend of Tampa Bay AirFest has finally made a comeback at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa after being canceled last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The 2-day free event promised and delivered jam-packed, "heart-pounding" flight performances and family-friendly activities. 

In case you missed it, 10 Tampa Bay has you covered. Here's how the weekend went from start to finish.

Who was there? 

The famous U.S. Navy Blue Angels were probably the most well-known performers coming to the Tampa Bay AirFest. But, they were not alone. Here's the lineup:

  • U.S. Navy Blue Angels
  • Scott "Scooter" Yoak
  • Jim Tobul
  • Michael Goulian
  • Matt Younkin
  • Kevin Coleman
  • Jerry "Jive" Kerby
  • Para-Commandos
  • F-22 Demo Team
  • C-17 Demo Team
  • KC-135 Stratotanker

What to bring? 

Tampa Bay AirFest organizers suggest bringing the following to the event:

  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Hearing protection
  • Hats
  • Credit cards / mobile payment / cash (ATMs will be available)
  • Empty bottles to fill with chilled water
  • Backpack-type folding chairs
  • Something for the kids to do / snacks for the ride home 

What can't I bring? 

  • Weapons of any kind including pocket knives, pocket tools, scissors, box cutters, billy clubs, large heavy chain-link jewelry or belts, mace and pepper spray
  • Firearms of any type
  • Toys that resemble firearms, laser pointers
  • RC aircraft & drones
  • Flammable items and fireworks
  • Pets (service animals will be allowed)
  • Spray paint and silly string
  • Outside food (small snacks will be allowed)
  • Coolers
  • Grills
  • Glass containers or bottles
  • Liquid without factory seal intact (baby bottles will be allowed)
  • Walkie-talkies, HAM radios, scanners
  • Alcohol and illegal drugs
  • Marijuana or CBD oil (recreational and medicinal) 
  • Bicycles, skateboards, scooters, heelies, roller skates or roller blades
  • "Excessively" large items and bags (the only exceptions are diaper bags, small purses and small camera bags)

What about the kids? 

Tampa Bay AirFest organizers say the Blue Angels kids zone is the only Blue Angel-themed children's area in the U.S. Fun for the kids include a 36-foot tall turbo shuttle corkscrew slide, multiple Blue Angel slides and bounce houses along with an Extreme Air Power Jump. For more info, click here.

Can I see planes up close? 

There will be multiple aircraft on display during the Tampa Bay AirFest. From fighters to tankers to warbirds and civilian planes to bombers, you'll be able to get a close-up look at the aircraft. 

For more information on the types of aircraft that will be on display, click here.

What if I get hungry?

There will be multiple food options available at the Tampa Bay AirFest. Options include: 

  • Hot dogs, bratwurst and sausage 
  • Burgers & sandwiches
  • Gyros
  • Cheese Steaks
  • Pizza
  • Chick Pita
  • Snacks including nachos, chips and soft pretzels
  • Desserts include ice cream sundae cones, ice cream bars, Italian ice and ice cream sandwiches
  • An assortment of drinks

For more information, click here.

How do I get there? 

If you're coming from South Tampa and areas east of Tampa, use the Dale Mabry and MacDill Avenue gates. 

If you're coming from areas west of Tampa, use S West Shore Boulevard at Interbay to enter the Tanker Way Gate (just east of Manhattan Avenue). 

If you have a Department of Defense ID, please only use the Bayshore Gate.

While carpooling is encouraged, AirFest organizers discourage guests from using rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft. 

For more directions and gate info, click here

Got questions?

Looking for something not on this list? Check out the Tampa Bay AifFest FAQ page.

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