Fox Field air show flight plan takes unexpected turn

by Larry Grooms and Stuart Ibberson, Aerotech News
LANCASTER, Calif.–With just three and a half months left before takeoff, the Los Angeles County Air Show at Fox Field in Lancaster has a new name and website, new faces in management, a new business partner and plans still to be made public.

The 2021 LA Air Show will be at Fox Field in Lancaster the weekend of Oct. 23-24.

Dennis Dunbar, a veteran of air shows around the country including here in the Antelope Valley, is the air show director. Dunbar served as air show director at Fox Field from 2014 to 2016.

The air show team has partnered with AirDotShow (air.show) to bring the LA Air Show to the people.

“I’ve worked as a contractor with Bryan Lilley [air.show] and his team several times over many years,” said Dunbar. “We met while working together on a show at the Kennedy Space Center back in 2007. Bryan has surrounded himself with a talented team of innovative professionals and puts on air shows in Cocoa Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Atlanta, Ocean City, New York and Orlando.

“Recently they have combined these events into a series called the AirDotShowLive tour, utilizing on demand content and livestreaming of these events to appeal to a wider audience,” Dunbar added.

The LA Air Show is the first West Coast addition to the tour and people from all over the world will have an opportunity to see the show.

Headlining the LA Air Show will be the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds showcasing their redesigned aerial demonstration, that also includes an updated ground show performance.

Other confirmed aerial displays include the U.S. Air Force F-35 Lightning II demonstration team, and the Air Force Heritage Flight.

Tickets went on sale July 2 at www.laairshow.com. You can save 40 percent if you buy your tickets before midnight Pacific Time on July 5.

Alongside the new website, there is also a new Facebook presence at https://www.facebook.com/laairshow/. Philanthropic efforts will also continue as, according to Dunbar, the LA Air Show will support a variety of charities.

One announced charity is the Cajun Scholarship. The Cajun Scholarship honors fallen Thunderbird and Valencia, Calif., native Maj. Stephen “Cajun” Del Bagno by providing scholarships to aviation students. Del Bagno died in an aircraft crash April 4, 2018, while flying with the Thunderbirds.

Each year the Cajun Scholarship goes to a student that is in need to help them pursue a future in aviation. The recipients are selected by those who were closest to Cajun, his father, mother, two sisters and two closest friends.

The new website also includes a section for volunteers to sign up.

In a letter to former volunteers, Dunbar said, “Many of you have been involved in the air show since 2014, some of you have no clue who I am, but all of you have put your heart and soul into making the previous air shows at Fox Field a success. We want you to know that you will continue to have that opportunity.”

Dunbar went on to reassure volunteers that while “the entity may be completely different, the roles you filled will be very similar and we are going to have a good time doing it, together.”
Volunteers can sign up at laairshow.com.

“Things are definitely happening fast now, and we will be back in touch with more information soon,” Dunbar said. “I am so excited to be back in the Aerospace Valley.”

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