MINOT AIR FORCE BASE The U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Team will open performances at the air show of Northern Neighbors Day Open House at Minot Air Force Base Saturday, July 18.
Pat Travnicek, deputy director of Northern Neighbors Day, said those attending the event should get there early as the Golden Knights will perform at 12:25 p.m., shortly after the air show's opening.
This is the 50th anniversary year for the Golden Knights based at Fort Bragg, N.C. The Gold Team will perform at Minot AFB.
Viper West Coast F-16 demonstration team, the NASCAR show car and the C-130 plane and crew that sprays for mosquitoes in the local area, are among the many highlights at this year's all-day event which is free to the public.
The Air Combat Command Viper West Coast F-16 demonstration team's performance will include a heritage flight with a P-38 Lightning flown by Kevin Eldridge who is with the Planes of Fame Museum in Chino, Calif. The demonstration team is from the 388th Figher Wing at Hill AFB, Utah.
Viper West crew chief from Hettinger
Minot AFB Northern Neighbors Day Open House - Saturday, July 18
parking is free
8 a.m. - Magic City Gate (main gate) opens to public.
11:15 a.m. Pre-air show performance by Canadian bagpipers.
Noon Air show officially begins.
12:25 p.m. U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Team
3:30 p.m. Magic City Gate closes to inbound public.
4 p.m. Open house concludes.
+Times are subject to change
Staff Sgt. Jared L. Carter, who is from Hettinger, is the lead dedicated crew chief of Air Combat Command's F-16 Demonstration Team Viper West, assigned to the 388th Fighter Wing at Hill AFB, Utah. He enlisted in the Air Force in December 1998.
His military career has included serving at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, in support of Operation Northern Watch and the Transient Aircraft and Crash Recovery flight, also at Incirlik. He has also deployed twice with the 4th Aircraft Maintenance Unit at Hill AFB, in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Carter was selected to his current position on the Air Combat Command F-16 Demonstration Team in August 2007.
His decorations include the Air Force Commendation Medal, Air Force Achievement Medal with one oak leaf cluster, the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award, Air Force Good Conduct Medal with one oak leaf cluster, the National Defense Service Medal, the Iraq Campaign Ribbon, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and the Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon with gold border.
Say 'thanks' to C-130 crew
This will be a chance for people to see the C-130 up close and thank the crew for all of their work of spraying mosquitoes, Travnicek said.
The C-130 and crew are from the 910th Airlift Wing at Youngstown Air Reserve Station, Ohio, and the 910th is the only full-time fixed-wing aerial spray unit in the Defense Department. The plane and crew also will be spraying for mosquitoes in the area again this month.
Pietsch Air Shows of Minot Kent and Warren Pietsch will perform, as well as Jim Peitz of Peitz Aerosports Inc. at Pierre, S.D., and John Mohr of Mohr Barnstorming at Vadnais Heights, Minn.
Flybys of aircraft will include the Minot AFB B-52, a B-2 from Whiteman AFB, Mo., a U-2 from Beale AFB, Calif., a B-25 from the Minnesota Wing Commemorative Air Force. There will be a B-1B from Ellsworth AFB, S.D., as a static display.
An alert aircraft response and takeoff will be conducted by Minot AFB B-52 aircraft. "This is chance for public to see a rapid reponse in action," Travnicek said.
Sawyer native with F-15E at event
There will be numerous static displays, including an F-15E "Strike Eagle" from Mountain Home AFB, Idaho, flown here by Air Force Maj. Mark Schmidt, a native of Sawyer.
Schmidt is with the 391st Bold Tigers Fighter Squadron at Mountain Home AFB. He has been in the Air Force since 1999.
Schmidt has flown in England, Turkey, Alaska, Korea and Guam. He's had one tour over Iraq and more recently, was deployed to Afghanistan, returning in January. Last year, Schmidt led a three-ship flight of F-15Es to Chile, for an international air show and while there, took part in an exercise with the Chilean Air Force. He and his wife, Shontelle, have two daughters and a son.
Schmidt often visits local schools when he is home in North Dakota to talk about his job in the Air Force and to thank communities for their support.
Tours will be available to visitors to Uniform-01, a mock missile silo, and a missile procedure trainer, both on the base.
Lt. Col. Bruce Way is director of Northern Neighbors Day and Jim Clifford is civilian volunteer.
For base entry information and other details visit the Minot AFB Web site at (www.minot.af.mil).