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Old Meets New at 2023 Yuma Air Show: Main Event Saturday

Heritage Flight Training Course 2023
Tech. Sgt. Sergio Gamboa/355th Wing
Two P-51 Mustang pilots with the Air Force Heritage Flight Foundation and the U.S. Air Force F-35A Lightning II Demonstration Team commander fly in a formation during the Heritage Flight Training Course at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., March 4, 2023. HFTC appears at MCAS Yuma Air Show, on Saturday (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Sergio A. Gamboa)

The 2023 Marine Corps Air Station Yuma Air Show is primed and ready for liftoff.

The event, the first to be open to the public since 2019, will feature aerial demonstrations, static displays and a chance to mingle with the Marines.

On Friday, KAWC attended a mock run of the show, and spoke with Captain Brett Vannier.

“At the air show, we will have the F35-A and the F35-B both Lightning 2 … the different variants, Air Force and Marine Corps,” he says. “Those are the show stealers, in my opinion.”

Technically on the same team, it will be up to the spectators to decide if the Air Force pilot, or the Marine Corps pilot, fly their F-35 better.

Marine Corps FA-18-C fighter pilot Peter MacDonald -- call sign TIF -- who is scheduled to fly in Saturday's air parade, says it is a tough call to make.

“I don't know. I'm a little biased, I'd say. The Marine Corps version has got that hover going for it. The F-35-A is definitely a very capable platform. They're both the wave of the future, and I'm just excited they're both on our side.”

In addition to cutting edge military tech, spectators also will get a chance to fly down memory lane, as a World War Two era fighter takes to the sky.

In this case, modern meets old, as a P-51 Mustang and an F-35-A fly together.

That is some of what visitors can expect to see Saturday, during the 2023 MCAS Air show.

The main event takes place from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., on Saturday.

For more details, a program, and a parking guide, visit