Greetings from The Aero Experience Team


The Aero Experience is a celebration of Midwest aviation and aerospace achievement. We invite you to join us as we explore the treasures of Midwest aviation through first-hand experiences. Our contributors take turns flying lead, and we are always looking for new destinations. Check in with The Aero Experience frequently to see where we will land today, and then go out and have your own aero experiences!

Blue skies,

Carmelo Turdo, Mark Nankivil and Fred Harl - The Aero Experience Team

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Fair St. Louis Airshow to Feature Top National Performers

By Carmelo Turdo
The 2012 Fair St. Louis July 4th airshow will feature top national performers, such as the EAA's B-17 "Aluminum Overcast," Aeroshell Aerobatic Team flying AT-6 Texan warbirds, John Mohr in his Stearman trainer and Matt Younkin in his Beech 18 among others.  Join thousands of your closest friends on the grounds of the Gateway Arch in downtown St. Louis or view the show from Malcolm W. Martin Memorial Park on the east side.  Here is a summary of the airshow performers currently posted on the Fair St. Louis web site     

The Fair Saint Louis Air Show will return skies above the Mississippi River on Wednesday, July 4 at 12 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Among the acts are the AeroShell Aerobatic Team, the U.S. Army Golden Knights, and Barnstormer John Mohr. Read more about them as well as our other spectacular acts below! Acts and performances are subject to changes and additions.

The Experimental Aircraft Associaton will bring its World War II B-17 bomber, Aluminum Overcast, to the skies above the Arch. Only 12,000 of these bombers were built during the war, and only thirteen are flying today. Two of these thirteen are certified to carry passengers, one of which Fair Saint Louis is honored to have as the centerpiece of the air show.

The Harrier Jump Jet will be returning to Saint Louis again this year as a repeat crowd favorite. The Fair Saint Louis air show is one of only twelve shows this year that will get to witness the majestic Harrier in action.

The AeroShell Aerobatic Team has been performing for over twenty-five years, amassing thousands of hours in front of airshow fans all over North America. Members of the team performing in St. Louis are Gene McNeely, Mark Henley, Steve Gustafson, and Bryan Regan.  They fly the agile AT-6 Texans, which were used as the primary platform for all U.S. airmen in World War II.

Pilot John Mohr has been thrilling crowds for more than 25 years, ever since his grandfather and father inspired him to his aviation success with their tales of barnstorming across the Midwest. He owns Mohr Barnstorming with his wife Lyn and says it has enabled them to “turn [their] passion into a profession.” He flies the 1943 Stock Stearman PT-17, which he uses for acrobatic routines, low-level and in-your-face acro.

The Iron Eagle Aerobatic Team is one of the most exciting teams flying the circuit today. Pilots Billy Segalla and Bill Gordon perform aerobatic routines in custom built planes, which they transformed from sport-aerobatic aircrafts into single-seat Super Christen Eagle I Biplanes with three years’ work. Only four of such planes are flying today. You won’t believe their dynamic speed and close maneuvers! 

John Klatt has awed millions of air show spectators across America with a unique blend of precision, power and performance. He has served in the Air National Guard for more than 20 years — flying combat, air support and humanitarian missions throughout the world in the F-16 “Fighting Falcon” and the C-130 “Hercules” aircraft.

Rob Holland was inspired to pursuing a career in aviation and aerobatics at a young age when his father brought him to his first air show. He became a licensed pilot at 18 and hasn’t stopped since, accumulating over 9500 hours of flight time in over 156 types of aircraft. He has earned numerous awards, including becoming the Advanced World Aerobatic Champion at the 8th Advanced World Aerobatic Championships in Oregon in 2008. He will fly the MX2 at the Fair Saint Louis Air Show, one of the most challenging and exciting aircraft in the world of aerobatics.

U.S. Army Parachute Team Golden Knights

For over fifty-two years members of the U.S. Army Parachute Team have been marking the milestones of achievement and an evolution of excellence serving as “Ambassadors” of the Army’s only official Demonstration team. The Golden Knights portray the image of being the most formidable parachuting competitors and demonstrators in the world today. Annually, the team reaches a third of our nation by performing spectacular parachute demonstrations for the American public.

Since the age of 19 in 1979, Bob Carlton has logged over 2000 hours in a wide variety of aircraft and has since been know as one of the most versatile air show performers in North America. His tradition of innovation in his aircraft continues with the recent addition of the Super Salto jet sailplane, with more power, more speed, and more aerobatic capability than any other sailplane on the planet.

Matt Younkin is a third generation pilot who learned to fly at the age of 14. Matt is now proficient in over 50 types of aircraft and is a certified flight instructor, but his latest and greatest achievement is perfecting the world’s only night aerobatic display in the Beech 18. His day performance in the same aircraft has been described as “the most graceful and beautiful performance the air show industry has to offer.”

Skip Stewart is an airline transport pilot, certified flight instructor, and has owned and operated an aerobatic flight school on top of his ten years of experience entertaining airshow fans around the world. His flying has been featured in several national and international magazines, including Sports Illustrated and Auto Pilot. He flies a modified Pitts S-2S he calls “Prometheus” that he custom built himself.

Air Show Hall of Fame inductee Danny Clisham is the announcer for the 2012 Fair Saint Louis air show, and has been entertaining audiences with his lively, informative commentary for 46 years. Besides his impressive career in air show announcing, he has also broken world-class speed records as a pilot and performed on-screen and voice-over work for films and the silver screen.

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