Experiencing the Chicago Air & Water show is more than just looking up into the sky.
There are plenty of ways to take in the heart-stopping performances in the largest free show of its kind.
The iconic event returns on Aug. 18 and 19 to North Avenue Beach with headliners including the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, U.S. Army Parachute Team Golden Knights and U.S. Navy Parachute Team Leap Frogs.
With the highly-anticipated performances just days away, here is everything you need to know before the weekend festivities begin.
Where to Watch:
Chicago Beaches: Viewers can watch the performers along the lakefront of Fullerton to Oak Street from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day along with several other spots that will offer views of the planes taking flight.
Navy Pier: Navy Pier cruises will be available to allow viewers to watch the show from the water. Options include the Odyssey Cruises, Mystic Blue and Spirit Cruises, which run from $59.90 and up.
Best Sightlines: North Avenue Beach, the lakefront from Oak Street Beach to Fullerton and Ohio Street Beach.
Where to Park:
Air & Water parking is available at Millennium Garages with free shuttle to and from North Ave. Beach.
How to Get There:
Metra will run extra service for the weekend to accomodate travelers heading to the Air & Water show. The $10 Weekend Pass gives unlimited rides Saturday and Sunday.
The Chicago Transit Authority is also offering additional service for spectators. Longer trains will operate along the Blue, Brown, Green and Orange lines both Saturday and Sunday. Extra service will also be provided on the No. 72 North Avenue and No. 151 Sheridan routes.
U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds
U.S. Army Parachute Team Golden Knights
U.S. Navy Parachute Team Leap Frogs
C-130 HerculesC-130 Hercules
KC-135 StratotankerKC-135 Stratotanker
P-51 MustangP-51 Mustang
T-38 TalonT-38 Talon
U. S. Navy F-18U. S. Navy F-18
U.S. Coast Guard MH-Dolphin Helicopter
U.S. Coast Guard CutterU.S. Coast Guard Cutter
F-35 Heritage FlightF-35 Heritage Flight
AeroShell Aerobatic Team
Sean D. Tucker & Team Oracle
Bill SteinBill Stein Aerosport
American Airlines 787-8
The Firebirds Delta TeamThe Firebirds Delta Team
Matt Chapman Airshows
Susan DacySusan Dacy in the Super Stearman Model 70
A-4 Skyhawk JetWarbird Heritage Museum Foundation
Chicago Fire Department Air/Sea Resue
Chicago Police Department Helicopter
What you can and cannot bring:
Prohibited items include:
- Alcoholic Beverages
- BBQ Grills (Open Flames)
- Drones (Personal and Commercial)
- Fireworks or Explosives
- Illegal Substances & Weapons
- Pop-up Tents/Canopies
- Flag Poles
- All Pets (except Service Animals)