Stunt pilots prep for Chicago’s Air and Water Show

August 16, 2012

Jewell Washington

(Flickr, Gandalf)
The Blue Angels fly near North Avenue Beach at the 2008 Chicago's Air and Water Show. Officials say thousands are expected to attend this year's 54th annual event.

Stunt pilots flew over Navy Pier on Thursday in preparation of this weekend’s 54th Annual Chicago Air and Water Show.

Thousands of people are expected at the three-day event, near North Avenue Beach, to catch the high-speed action.

Mary May is with the city’s Department of Cultural Affairs. She said people come from all around to catch the one-of-a-kind free event.

“People are very excited to see the United States Navy Blue Angels and their F-18s, very exciting to watch,” she said. “And of course crowd favorites, the United States Army parachute team Golden Knights as well as the Navy parachute team, the Leap Frogs.”

May said the Federal Aviation Administration sets strict rules to keep the daredevil pilots safe. Organizers also work with local officials to maintain the safety of audience members.

She said as many as two million people have attended air shows in the past.