Home » We’re Going Back To The World’s Greatest Air Show This Year And Hosting A Reader Meetup, Here’s What’s Coming

We’re Going Back To The World’s Greatest Air Show This Year And Hosting A Reader Meetup, Here’s What’s Coming

Super Guppy. Aero Spacelines. N941na. Nasa.
ADVERTISEMENT

Last year, I finally scratched off a bucket list item when I descended into EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2022. I joined a remarkable 650,000 people in a celebration about all things aviation. The planes were even more majestic than the sheer size of the whole event. Last year, I was there just for the final weekend, after so many epic aircraft had gone home. That weekend also just wasn’t long enough to see everything. That’s how big AirVenture is! Well, this year, I’m going back and staying for the whole event. And this year, AirVenture has some fantastic treats for aviation geeks.

Oshkosh, Wisconsin holds a special place in my heart. I married my wife in the Experimental Aircraft Association’s Aviation Museum surrounded by some magnificent aviation history. I could not have asked for a better venue or for cooler people to show up. But the EAA grounds are far more than the location I tied the knot, but the destination for hundreds of thousands of aviation fans every single year. After having been to a bunch of trade shows last year and this year, I can say that even the nation’s largest RV shows have nothing on the greatest air show on Earth.

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

I mean, let’s just start with the massive footprint of AirVenture. Each year, the show takes place at Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh. Now, EAA’s map doesn’t give you a good sense of scale, but here it is for reference:

Av Operations 2023 Print Visitormap South40.indd
EAA

See what I mean? Much of the show runs parallel to runway 18R/36L, which runs a long 8,002 feet. At the other end of the airport, you have runway 9/27, which runs 6,179 feet. If you were to walk the entire length of the show as I did, you will be walking a lot of miles a day. In other words, if you’re the kind of person who likes getting steps in, AirVenture is absolutely the place for you.

If knowing that the runways are over a mile long doesn’t quite illustrate the size of the event, consider that Wittman Regional Airport has serviced countless aircraft including the Airbus A380, the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress, the Boeing 747, and the Concorde. That’s an outstanding setlist of planes right there!

ADVERTISEMENT

Looking back at last year’s AirVenture, my mind is still boggled by the mammoth scale of the Lockheed C-5M Super Galaxy brought in by the United States Air Force.

Mercedes Streeter

I was also taken aback by the gorgeous vintage aircraft on display and all of them had stories to tell. I got to take a ride in a Ford Tri-Motor, watch the Opener Blackfly buzz around like an insect, and military jets crack through the sky creating noises that sounds like the jets were splitting air apart.

Mercedes Streeter

I saw so much more and it was all on the final weekend days when many of the epic aircraft from the show already went home. Well, I’m happy to report that this time, I’ll be there for the whole show, catching everything with my very own eyes.

Mercedes Streeter

EAA AirVenture 2022 had a record 650,000 visitors and over 10,000 aircraft on the grounds and flying around the area. Of that number 3,226 were showplanes. EAA also recorded 12,000 campsites in use, accounting for about 40,000 of the total attendance. Attendees came from far and wide, with 92 countries being represented by people. To give you a sense of the scale, AirVenture is easily twice the size of the famed 114-year-old Paris Air Show.

Speaking of all-star aircraft, this year is set to get even more fantastic flying machinery. Here’s a peek at what I’ll be checking out:

ADVERTISEMENT

NASA Super Guppy

Faxpvh84lfxwjbqtb8kn
NASA

EAA’s description:

Monday-Wednesday, July 24-26, Boeing Plaza: NASA Super Guppy parked on Boeing Plaza. This unique cargo airplane carries large spaceship parts from location to location. The airplane will also carry a full-size test article of the Orion space capsule.

Lockheed C-121A Constellation

29292fb3b61d468f8b56e6b74ef39cd9
EAA

EAA’s description:

The recently restored Lockheed C-121A Constellation ‘Bataan’, owned by Air Legends Foundation, will be making the trip to Oshkosh this year for EAA AirVenture 2023. In June, the Connie made its first post-restoration flight out of Chino Airport in California. Bataan’s appearance at AirVenture will mark the first time a Connie, either in its military or civilian airline configuration, has attended Oshkosh since the mid-2000s.

‘Bataan’ is expected to arrive at AirVenture 2023 during the air show on Monday, July 24, and depart during the air show on Friday, July 28.

Piper L-4 Cub Rosie the Rocketer

69d2480a4c324899931cb3d2a96676f0
EAA

EAA’s description:

A historic fabric-covered Piper L-4 Cub, nicknamed Rosie the Rocketer, which had some of the most fascinating exploits of any small aircraft during World War II, will be part of this year’s warbirds display at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2023.

The airplane became famous during the war when Maj. Charles Carpenter attached six bazookas to the aircraft and began attacking German tanks and armor while assigned to General Patton’s 3rd Army. “Bazooka Charlie,” as Carpenter became known, had multiple documented armor kills and the aircraft was preserved with its original bullet holes and other battle scars. The L-4 was found in Austria in 2017 and restored to flying condition by Colin Powers in late 2020. It is currently owned by the Collings Foundation of Stow, Massachusetts.

Boeing 747-400 Large Cargo Freighter ‘Dreamlifter’

91140885 3346970578664789 824870
Boeing

Boeing’s description:

The Dreamlifter is a unique tool developed by Boeing with Evergreen.

This family of four specially modified 747s transports the large 787 fuselage sections and other structures from our partners’ locations around the world to our final assembly sites in Everett, Wash. and North Charleston, SC.

Boeing Plaza will be packed full of aircraft on static display, including one of the Boeing Dreamlifters, an extensively modified 747-400 used to transport 787 Dreamliner parts between various worldwide suppliers. Be sure to check out Boeing Plaza throughout the week as different aircraft rotate in and out.

Normally, I’d give you some history on these planes, but that’s for later!

ADVERTISEMENT

In addition to the rockstar aircraft lineup, EAA AirVenture 2023 honors a number of anniversaries. This year marks EAA’s 70 years of existence, 70 years of the famous Fly-In, and 50 years since the end of combat in the Vietnam War. So, this year is going to be absolutely incredible for sure.

Fb41ee979f6d445c9304e7265e547687
C-123 Thunderpig – EAA

I plan to have an Autopian meetup on Saturday, July 29 outside of the event, so stay tuned for updates on that.

The event runs from July 24 to 30. Daily tickets are $43 if you’re an EAA member or $61 if you’re just visiting. Come on Sunday and it’s just $20 or $25, respectively. There are also multiple-day tickets that lower the daily cost, such as the two-day ticket available to just non-members for $98. There is a campground there, and that’s where you’ll find me for the whole week of the event. Look for a brown and white travel trailer with “Adirondack” on its sides.

(Top Image: NASA)

Support our mission of championing car culture by becoming an Official Autopian Member.

ADVERTISEMENT

Image17

 

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on whatsapp
WhatsApp
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn
Share on reddit
Reddit
Subscribe
Notify of
23 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
PropWash
PropWash
11 months ago

I’m here! What street you all on?

rctothefuture
rctothefuture
1 year ago

Enjoy it! I’m trying to get up there if the work/life schedule allows it. Always an awesome time in Oshkosh!

Jdesigner
Jdesigner
1 year ago

I’ve been a handful of times. My parents would take me yearly as a child. I highly suggest it. I’m surprised you left out the night airshow with pyrotechnics and stunt flying. This in itself is worth seeing. Just go on youtube and look up videos, its amazing.

Theotherotter
Theotherotter
1 year ago

I’ve only been to Oshkosh once (about 2015), and it was great. I think I can make it this year!

Boulevard_Yachtsman
Boulevard_Yachtsman
1 year ago

Looking forward to seeing your stories from this year’s AirVenture! I remember reading about last year’s trip – can’t believe it’s been that long already. Someday I’m going to go to this again. The last time I was there I got to see the Concord take off, so it’s been awhile. Unfortunately it lands during one of my busiest weeks of the year at work, making it difficult to schedule time off. Have a spectacular time!

James Davidson
James Davidson
1 year ago

AirVenture looks like a blast! We live near the Olde Rhinebeck Aerodrome and routinely watch the biplanes from their air shows flying in formation over our neighborhood. They also have a 1909 Bleriot, the oldest regularly flown airplane in the Western Hemisphere, along with a Fokker DR-I Triplane and a precise replica of the Spirit of St. Louis. They also do biplane rides! Check it out: https://oldrhinebeck.org

Jack Elliott
Jack Elliott
1 year ago

I’ve been many times. One of the best shows for gearhead/engineer type people. Definitely bring a bicycle or scooter if you’re camping. Plan your days around events, then take the tram to those areas waiting in line for 10 minutes for a tram will pay dividends later plus you get a quick view of stuff you might want to see later. It is a concrete dessert I bought a straw hat last time and it was great, they sell different themes ones in different areas.

Dodsworth
Dodsworth
1 year ago

My Lord, that Constellation is a gorgeous piece of machinery.

Bob Boxbody
Bob Boxbody
1 year ago

I wish I could go; I love a good air show. I got to walk through a C-5 Galaxy at a show when I lived in Juneau, and looking back, it still boggles my mind how giant that thing is.

ADDvanced
ADDvanced
1 year ago

I’ve been to it twice. It’s so much walking you’ll never get through it in a day. It’s the largest “event” I’ve ever been to. Honestly I’d think about trying to bring a bike if I went again. Definitely a bucket list thing tho.

Highland Green Miata
Highland Green Miata
1 year ago

EAA holds a special place in my heart. I grew up in Oshkosh and worked for the EAA while in high school and college, both in the museum during the year and on the grounds during the event. They used to have an astonishing collection of colorful vintage VW Beetles with the tops cut off and the doors removed that were used more or less like golf carts around the grounds. Sadly, I believe they’ve retired them for actual golf carts. One summer I was assigned one of the only 17-ever-built “Minikin” convertibles (think a 1980’s version of a slingshot with 1/10 the power) to ferry the costumed mascot around the grounds. Good times.

Duke of Kent
Duke of Kent
1 year ago

Sweet! I’m really looking forward to your reports from the show! EAA Airventure looks like Burning Man for aviation geeks, and I am here for it!

Be sure to bring extra memory cards — there’s no such thing as “too many pictures” at an event like this!

Scott Williams
Scott Williams
1 year ago

Nice! And you didn’t even mention the Seaplane Base – which is a nice quiet escape from the hustle and bustle of the main show. Planning to be there one day next week- enjoy!

EXP_Scarred
EXP_Scarred
1 year ago
Reply to  Scott Williams

^^^^^Thisthisthisthis^^^^^^

Plan for a full day there, especially if it’s hot (which it will be at least sometime during the week). Go down to the south end of the grounds and take the shuttle–I believe it’s free.

MrLM002
MrLM002
1 year ago

The C-123 is a great plane, sadly a ton of them are horribly contaminated with agent orange.

Canopysaurus
Canopysaurus
1 year ago

I’m jealous. Have a wonderful trip and be sure to bring back lots of pics and prose.

PropWash
PropWash
1 year ago

A good friend who works for NASA (and fellow former B-17 crewmember) will be there with the SuperGuppy. Her name is Kara. While there seek her out and say PropWash sent you. Also, I’ll be there with the Airstream and Gladiator late Thursday night (missing Kara and the SuperGuppy). I hope to run into you!

MATTinMKE
MATTinMKE
1 year ago
Reply to  PropWash

PropWash is a great name, why didn’t you use that for your name here?

PropWash
PropWash
1 year ago
Reply to  MATTinMKE

For some reason when this site first launched, I didnt notice the option to use a handle. Drat.

Nick Ginther
Nick Ginther
1 year ago

The Constellation is one of the most beautiful aircraft every created. Very happy they’ve got another one restored and flying again.
Dreamlifter story. It once landed at the wrong airport in Wichita. Was supposed to go to McConnell AFB/Boeing/Spirit but landed at KAAO instead. It was quite the spectacle.

Robot Turds
Robot Turds
1 year ago

If you’re ever in the Portland area there are a bunch of vintage airplane museums including one called Evergreen.

Aeon
Aeon
1 year ago
Reply to  Robot Turds

Just went to Evergreen last week. Paid for the tour of the Spruce Goose, and was well worth it.

Scott Williams
Scott Williams
1 year ago
Reply to  Robot Turds

I just saw some pics posted from Evergreen’s museum online. Some great stuff there – not just the Spruce Goose!

23
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x