Vintage ‘Warbirds’ will soon awake and fly over Virginia Beach

The annual show is May 17-19 at the Military Aviation Museum. (Southside Daily/Courtesy of Military Aviation Museum)
The annual show is May 17-19 at the Military Aviation Museum. (Southside Daily/Courtesy of Military Aviation Museum)

Skies over Virginia Beach will once again be alive with the sight of flying vintage aircraft for the Military Aviation Museum’s Annual Warbirds Over the Beach Air Show.

The annual show is May 17-19 at the Military Aviation Museum.

The weekend boasts a real 1940s atmosphere with entertainers, reenactor encampments, a military flea market, and hangar dance, organizers said.

The museum’s large collection of World War II aircraft fly all three days (weather permitting), featuring iconic American classics such as the P-51 Mustang and the Corsair, the British Spitfire and Hurricane, along with one of the newest additions to the museum’s collection, a German Messerschmidtt Bf-109.

Airshow festivities take-off on May 18, with practice flights throughout the day from many of the aircraft participating in the show, along with re-enactor camp set up. Saturday and Sunday will feature a variety of entertainers to include Theresa Eaman, a nationally known jazz artist, and the New York-based America’s Sweethearts, according to a news release from the Military Aviation Museum.

A hangar dance headlines Saturday afternoon, complete with live big band music compliments of the Mark Michielsen Big Band.

A military flea market will offer aviation-themed treasures and local vendors will be ready to serve up some tasty cuisine.

Guests can ride in an authentic World War II aircraft — the museum’s 1941 Boeing Stearman and 1989 Waco YMF-5 will be available for 15-minute rides.

Rounding out the options for plane rides will be Bay Aviation, offering flights in their Fairchild PT-19. All rides are subject to weather conditions and prior reservations are strongly recommended.

Rides may be booked by visiting

Admission to the show also offers access to the rest of the Military Aviation Museum historical exhibits, such as their WWI and German Cottbus hangars, as well as a control tower from the first American fighter base in England in 1942, reconstructed using actual bricks from the original tower that was in operation at RAF Goxhill, during WWII.

Tickets are available online for a discounted rate of $31.50 per adult single-day admission and $13.50 youth single-day admission, now through May 10. Beginning May 11, tickets will be sold at the full price of $35 per adult single-day admission and $15 per youth single-day admission.

For information and to buy tickets, call 757-721-7767 or visit

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John Mangalonzo ( is the managing editor of Local Voice Media’s Virginia papers – WYDaily (Williamsburg), Southside Daily (Virginia Beach) and HNNDaily (Hampton-Newport News). Before coming to Local Voice, John was the senior content editor of The Bellingham Herald, a McClatchy newspaper in Washington state. Previously, he served as city editor/content strategist for USA Today Network newsrooms in St. George and Cedar City, Utah. John started his professional journalism career shortly after graduating from Lyceum of The Philippines University in 1990. As a rookie reporter for a national newspaper in Manila that year, John was assigned to cover four of the most dangerous cities in Metro Manila. Later that year, John was transferred to cover the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines. He spent the latter part of 1990 to early 1992 embedded with troopers in the southern Philippines as they fought with communist rebels and Muslim extremists. His U.S. journalism career includes reporting and editing stints for newspapers and other media outlets in New York City, California, Texas, Iowa, Utah, Colorado and Washington state.