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2024 Fort Lauderdale Air Show, what to know if you're planning to go

2024 Fort Lauderdale Air Show, what to know if you're planning to go
2024 Fort Lauderdale Air Show, what to know if you're planning to go 02:48

FORT LAUDERDALE - The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds will do what they do best as they headline the year's 2024 Fort Lauderdale Air Show on May 11th and 12th.

An annual favorite for South Florida, the show features a combination of military and civilian demonstration teams and individual pilots who put their skills to the test with daring aeronautical acrobatics.

Other scheduled performers include the A-10 Thunderbolt II Demo Team, the Polaris Program's Ghost Squadron, the United States Special Operations Command Parachute Team, the U.S. Navy F-18 Rhino Demo Team, and the U.S. Air Force Heritage Flight. There will also be civilian pilots and a helicopter demonstration.

Fort Lauderdale Air Show takes flight this weekend 02:38

The show kicks off around 11:45 a.m. and ends around 3:00 p.m. on both days. The show center is at Birch State Park.

According to organizers, those watching the show are not allowed to set up chairs on A1A which will be closed from Sunrise Boulevard to 19th Street.

The Sunrise/A1A intersection will remain open but due to traffic congestion in that area, it is recommended you avoid it.

While there are several ticket packages available for those who want a prime viewing location, there are free public locations north and south of the show center.


U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds

Soaring in their F-16 Fighting Falcons, the six-member team will put on an amazing performance. The precision four pilot demonstration team is known for its tight formations, with wingtips just four feet apart, as they perform loops, inverted rolls, and high-performance turns. Two opposing solo jets will perform high-speed maneuvers from opposite directions. In the finale, all six jets will come together in a delta formation flying awe-inspiring difficult formations and signature breaks.

A-10 Thunderbolt II Demo Team

The single-pilot attack jet, nicknamed "Warthog," can operate nearly anywhere and provide ground troops with close air support. During the show, the pilot will perform precision aerial maneuvers. The performance highlights the mission of the men and women of the United States Air Force.

Ghost Squadron

The Polaris Ghost Squadron's precision formation flying is designed to inspire the next generation of pilots. Beyond the breathtaking aerobatics, these high-performance jets offer astronauts from Polaris Program missions training opportunities.

Are you ready for the Fort Lauderdale Air Show? 02:27

SOCOM Para-Commandos

Made up of volunteers from the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and U.S. government civilians assigned to the Special Operations Command, the United States Special Operations Command Parachute Team, known as the Para-Commandos, was formed in 1991. The team represents the elite Special Operations Forces of the United States armed services.


For those going to the show and want a good spot to watch, there are several ticket packages.

The cheapest option is the Drop Zone for $35. This area features dedicated portable restrooms and food & drink will be available for purchase. All you need is a beach chair or blanket and you're all set.

For those looking for a bit more, they can reserve a spot in a Sand Box starting at $67.25. Sand Boxes are 10' X 12' private viewing areas on the sand with dedicated for-purchase food and beverage stands. Each Sand Box accommodates up to four people. A reserved parking pass in Birch State Park with shuttle bus transport is included.

Saturday Sand Box tickets are sold out.

Coolers with food and non-alcoholic beverages are allowed in the Drop Zone and Sand Box ticket areas.

For those looking for a VIP experience, there is the Flight Line Club VIP area for $189 per person. Located at Sunrise Boulevard and the beach. In addition to the use of complimentary beach chairs, there is a catered lunch right on the beach complete with soft drinks, water, beer, and wine. Parking is included.

The Drop Zone Beach opens at 9 a.m. and the Flight Line Club beach area will open at 10 a.m.

Boaters will also be able to see the show, as the U.S. Coast Guard has established a Safety Zone to keep boat anchors from damaging the coral reefs offshore.

What to bring

A day at the beach requires a little planning. First, you will need beach chairs or something to sit on like a towel or blanket. Don't forget the sunscreen and you should probably wear a hat.

Per city ordinances, there is no smoking on the beach. There are designated smoking areas along the A1A sidewalk. Also prohibited are pets on the beach, so leave the furries ones at home.

While beach umbrellas are allowed, tents, pop-ups, and other structures (including baby tents) are prohibited.


If you are driving to the event, there are three public parking locations on the beach:

Fort Lauderdale Beach Park (700 Seabreeze Boulevard)

The closet available large parking area is at the Galleria Mall on Sunrise Boulevard, about half a mile from the beach. 

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