Jets will be zipping and zooming above Huntington Beach next week when the Great Pacific Airshow returns to showcase civilian and military aviation.
The third edition of the free show, originally called the Breitling Huntington Beach Airshow, is slated for 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Oct. 19-21 in the area of the Waterfront Beach Resort along Pacific Coast Highway.
More than 2 million people are expected to attend the three-day event.
Attractions will include the Air Force Thunderbirds, Jeff Boerboon’s Yak 110, a KC 135 Stratotanker and a C-17 Globemaster, along with aerobatic pilots such as Matt Chapman, Sammy Mason and Bill Stein.
Visitors are encouraged to arrive early to snag a free spot on the beach. For upgraded viewing, guests can buy tickets for reserved seating on the Huntington Beach Pier, a private chalet on the beach with a catered lunch and hosted bar or VIP beach seating, which includes access to a no-host bar and private restrooms.
Parking is first-come, first-served. Hourly parking is available at Pier Plaza on Pacific Coast Highway and the Main Promenade parking structure on Main Street.
Visit Huntington Beach’s free shuttle service will be available every half-hour from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Pickups will be available at Huntington Beach High School, 1905 Main St., and City Hall, 2000 Main St. The last shuttle will depart the show area at 5:30 p.m.
The action actually gets started at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday as a single Thunderbird aircraft arrives at the Los Alamitos Joint Forces Training Base.
The Thunderbirds, the Air Force’s premier aerial demonstration squadron, will take practice flights from 1 to 2 p.m. Thursday and 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Friday.
The public also is invited to a community event from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday to welcome air show performers at the 5th and PCH commercial center. The event will feature a question-and-answer session, live music, food and air show merchandise.
“The Pacific Airshow is first and foremost a community, organized by members of this community, and we want the performers to know the good will and good vibes of Huntington Beach,” Kevin Elliott, president of Pacific Airshow LLC, said in a statement.
Fifth Street will be closed to vehicles between Pacific Coast Highway and Walnut Avenue during the community event.