Air & Water Show to Take Flight Over Chicago

One of my favorite memories includes climbing to the top of a friend’s condo building on Lake Shore Drive (we actually took the elevator), to watch the Chicago Air & Water Show (it was actually really cloudy and we couldn’t see much), and it was amazing to experience the energy that was penetrating around the city (that’s actually true).
My friend has since moved out of that building, but you don’t have to live in Chicago real estate along Lake Shore Drive to enjoy this year’s 54th annual Chicago Air and Water Show, the largest and oldest free show of its kind in the country.
Here are the details:
*When: The show is set for Saturday and Sunday, August 18-19 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
*Where: The focal point is North Avenue Beach, but you can get great viewing all along the lakefront from Fullerton to Oak Street and at the Ohio Street Beach.
*How: Public transportation is highly recommended. If you drive, you can try to find parking near the beach, or take your car to Millennium Park Garage, 5 S. Columbus Drive; Grant Park North Garage, 25 N. Michigan Ave.; or Grant Park South Garage, 325 S. Michigan Ave. The parking rate in those three garages is $35 for all-day parking, plus there is a free shuttle service from Millennium Park Garage to the beach.
*Consider: For a different view of the show, consider heading up to the top of the John Hancock Observatory with its 360-degree views.
*Hear: There will be a live broadcast of the show on 105.9-FM and WBBM Newsradio 780 along with livestream video on the website.
This year’s headliners include the U.S. Navy Blue Angels, the U.S. Army Parachute Team Golden Knights and the U.S. Navy Leap Frogs.
Some interesting Air and Water Show trivia:
*The first show was held in 1959 and had a budget of $88.
*More than two million viewers are expected to line Chicago’s lakefront for the show.
*The majority of planes in the show take off and land at the Gary Jet Center in Gary, Indiana.
*Some of the military planes fly in from bases around the Midwest, timing their flight to fly over the show at an exact moment.
*All pilots perform stunts over the water in a set safety area. When a plane flies over buildings, it is just doing so to return to the show area or the airport.
Any more questions? Check out for the answers.