Madera Municipal Airport will be humming with activity Saturday when the Gathering of Warbirds Reunion and Classic Car show join forces to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the “D” Day invasion of Normandy in World War 2. Opening ceremonies begin at 10 a.m., including the NAS Lemoore Color Guard and the Central Valley Barbershop Quartet.
Firm commitments have been received from owners of seven Mustang fighter planes, including the only P51H that’s flying. Powered by a Merlin engine, this plane was a perennial attendee of the Gathering of Warbirds event in the 1970s.
The Liberty Foundation will be offering a P-51D passenger flight experience from May 10 to 12. The aircraft is a legendary Red Tail of the Tuskgegee Airmen of WWII fame. Joining the list of WW2 planes is a Russian YAK 11, two North American AT-6s, three Stearman PT-17’s and two Fairchild PT-19s. Additional military aircraft are expected and they will be announced at a later date.
The Classic Car Show will feature civilian and military vehicles of the era. A contingent of approximately 25 veterans, who currently reside at the Fresno Veterans Home of California, will be honored guests at the event. Food and beverage vendors will be on the grounds.
Gates open at 8:30 a.m., entry fee is a minimum $10 donation fee. The Madera Airport is at 4020 Aviation Drive in Madera. From State Route 99 take exit 157.
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Gathering of Warbirds Reunion is a 501C3 Non Profit Corp. For additional information call 816-8461 or 360-9799.