Ah, spring! The smell of blooming flowers. The sight of greening trees. The sound of roaring aircraft showing their stuff at the local airshow.
Airshows could mean airport closures or temporary towers and, in the case of military demonstrations, will mean temporary flight restrictions. In addition, airshows with non-military high-performance demonstrations may apply to the FAA for a TFR. Temporary flight restrictions are issued as FDC notams; airport closures are handled as a notam-D and usually run only for the duration of the high-performance demonstration.
AOPA reminds pilots to fly smart. "Make sure you know what you're facing along your route," said Melissa Bailey, AOPA vice president of air traffic. "When you're getting your preflight briefing, ask about any FDC notams along the route. Airshow notams are supposed to be issued as FDC notams." Bailey also recommends, "If you're flying cross-country and know about a show along the way, ask about local notams at that airport."
AOPA has compiled a list of performances by the most popular military demonstration teams, the Air Force Thunderbirds, the Navy Blue Angels, and the Army Golden Knights. Many airshows are also listed in the AOPA Calendar of Events. But as always, AOPA reminds pilots that dates and times are subject to change and to be sure to have the most current information before you take off.