Parking Overview

Please Note: The gates will open at 4:30pm on Friday; 9:00am on Saturday & Sunday. Friday is an evening show featuring aircraft displays, aircraft performances and ending in a fireworks display. The performance schedules will not be announced as the times are subject to change. There are several factors that affect the schedule such as weather, aircraft concerns, and other circumstances beyond control of the Florida International Air Show.

Scheduled Performers:

Be sure to pack your sunscreen and event chairs. Chairs will be available for rent at the event if you do not want to carry your own.

Outside food, alcoholic beverages, carry-in packages, coolers, large beach umbrellas, and pets are not permitted (excluding certified service animals).

Smoking is not allowed inside the gates, except in the Smoking area.

Drones are not permitted.

If attending with young children, please consider bringing ear protection (ear plugs or silencing ear muffs) to help keep them comfortable and enjoying the Show.

The Florida International Air Show reserves the right to cancel, terminate or suspend this event or any part of this event should any non-authorized intervention, inclement weather, or other causes beyond its control, corrupt or impair the security, administration, and/or operation of this event as determined by the Florida International Air Show in its sole discretion.

No refunds or exchanges.

Location

Punta Gorda Airport (formerly Charlotte County Airport) 28000 Airport Rd., Punta Gorda, Florida 33982

One of “10 Best Air Shows Around the World” — USA Today

USAToday

USAToday

 

History of the Air Show

The 2017 Florida International Air Show celebrates its 36th year of continuously presenting air shows to the residents and visitors of Southwest Florida. Beginning as a brief single day event with only a few acts, the Air Show has grown into a three-day event with family and fan-friendly activities, a large variety of acts, interactive displays and much more. The Punta Gorda Airport plays an integral role in the Air Show’s history—it was here long before the Florida International Air Show and has hosted the event since its inception. Government officials began planning the Punta Gorda Army Air Field in 1941. Plans called for a base including two squadrons of student pilots and over 3,000 off base personnel. The base was home to forty Curtis P-40 “Warhawk” aircraft, later changed to North-American P-51 “Mustang” aircraft, which were assigned as part of the final flight training for pilots who were sent overseas to fight the war in these famed aircraft. The base also had C-45 and C-47 transports assigned to the Punta Gorda Army Air Field. All base officers and some upper NCOs lived in Punta Gorda, while all student officers and most enlisted men lived in tent structures on base. Buildings included operation headquarters, classrooms, supply, fire station, dispensary, chapel and the control tower. The base had nose hangars where just the nose of the plane was under shelter for repairs. The Army airfield closed shortly after WWII and reverted to the County’s jurisdiction becoming what is now known as the Punta Gorda Airport. Today, the airport is managed and operated by the Punta Gorda Airport Authority and is recognized as one of the finest general aviation facilities in Florida. The Airport hosted its first air show on New Year’s Day in 1950. Betty Skelton was a featured performer and the star of that show. Betty returned to the Airport and present-day Air Show in 2008, honored and recognized as a Pioneer in Aviation.

Photography

There’s something about planes and flight that fascinates us all. Whether it’s watching an osprey about to grab breakfast from the surface of the harbor or marveling at the spectacular images created by the flight of World War II aircraft, chances are that at one time or another you’ve been captured by this magic. Nothing inspires the awe of the Air Show spectator more than the airborne gymnastics, known as aerobatics. The agility of the planes and the skill of the pilots put us in awe, time after time. The sheer size of the C-130 hurricane hunter, the aviation history of a “War bird” collection and the colorful performers add much to the magic that is an Air Show. Air Show Photography can be one of the most rewarding and challenging experiences that any photographer, amateur or professional, can undertake. The excitement of jets screaming past at low levels, nearing speeds up to 400 knots, plus, the drone of an Radial engine, the near hysteria of the crowds, and the marvelous still images created by the static aircraft. These can all be found at the Air Show and can all make for a great day of photography. Year after year, there is no more picturesque place to find such chance image possibilities than in sunny Southwest Florida at the Florida International Air Show. https://www.flickr.com/photos/floridaairshow/ However, capturing the moments by camera requires concentration, practice, timing, along with a little luck. Capturing that perfect shot, may take even more. There are Photographer Hobbyist passes available if you have interest in getting up close and personal with the pilots and aircraft prior to the gates opening on Saturday and Sunday. (Photographers will be escorted in groups in order to follow security protocols.) Please see ticketing to purchase a 1 or 2 day Photographer Pass.

Become A Volunteer

The Florida International Air Show is a great way to get involved in the community and help raise money for Southwest Florida working charities. While you are volunteering on the Air Show grounds you can feel, hear, and see the excitement all around you. The Air Show is looking for adults (18 and older) to volunteer to work in the following positions: Ground Operations, Air Operations, Concessions, Admissions, Marketing, Finance, Transportation, Hospitality, Security, Clean Up, Program Sales, and various other positions. Volunteers to be available a minimum of 6 hours. We are also looking for local charities that would like to work as a volunteer group. (Not for profit organizations are eligible to receive compensation for volunteer hours.) For additional volunteer details, contact Beverly Dibble bdibbs59@gmail.com.