Mustang in air

The North American P-51D Mustang will be one of the featured attractions at the Lake Cumberland Air Show this Sunday at Lake Cumberland Regional Airport, part of the Somernites Cruise Mustang-themed weekend. 

It’s often been said that a souped-up sports car like those often on display at Somernites Cruise can really fly. This weekend, however, Pulaski County will witness vehicles in action that really do fly — literally.

The first-ever Lake Cumberland Air Show will take place this Sunday at the Lake Cumberland Regional Airport, located off of Kit Cowan Road in Somerset. 

Presented by the Don Franklin Somerset Family of Dealerships, in partnership with SPEDA, the Somerset-Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce, Lake Cumberland Regional Airport, and Somernites Cruise, the Lake Cumberland Air Show, will offer a number of uplifting experiences for aerial aficionados, including seeing aircraft up close, witnessing them in action, and even going up in one to experience the wild blue yonder for one’s self.

Lake Cumberland Regional Airport Manager Kellie Baker explained that the idea was a “team effort” between the airport, Somernites Cruise and SPEDA to make something unique happen and tie it in with the popular custom and classic car show, which is also going on this weekend in Somerset.

“We haven’t had an air show in 20 years,” said Baker. “We all kind of sat down and thought, ‘How can we do that in conjunction with Somernites Cruise?’ ... We wanted to do it on Mustang weekend (at the Cruise). The idea arose from wanting to bring in a P-51 Mustang (air fighter). Everything fell into place.”

Having an entity like SPEDA involved, which gets information out about the area for the purpose of progressing economic development, to help promote the show helped save costs in the first year of what Baker noted is hopefully to become an annual event moving forward.

Admission to the event Sunday is free. There will be lots to see and do, including:

• Static displays, or aircraft parked on the ground that one can walk up to and see in crystal-clear detail.

“It’s kind of like the Cruise, a hands-off approach, but to be able to physically look at the aircraft up close and personal,” said Baker. “There will be lots of helicopters here. ... There will also be lots of Mustangs (the car) here, so if you’re not at the car Cruise on Saturday, come here on Sunday.”

• A fascinating aerial display, with planes doing aerobatic tricks in the air — and even some incredible things to see on the ground — Baker teased the idea of a Corvette racing down the runway against an aircraft.

• The opportunity to take helicopter and airplane rides. Take a trip to the air in a plane for $25 per person, or go up in a helicopter for $50 at the site, $47 if purchased online beforehand.

More costly, but potentially even more exciting, opportunities include riding in a World War II AT-6 Texan for $325 (flight times must be arranged prior to the event), or for the daredevils, take an aerobatic flight for $625.

• There will also be food trucks, inflatables, and “something for everybody to enjoy,” said Baker.

There will be six different parking lots, most of them on Kit Cowan Road, the other the Crane Fiat parking lot on Ky. 3057, with RTEC vans serving as shuttles to the terminal.

According to lakecumberlandairshow,com, gates open at 9 a.m., as do the static aircraft displays. At 1 p.m., the air show begins. Photo opportunities with the P-51 Mustang run until noon.

Performances include the World War II North American P-51D Mustang, the Vanguard Squadron, Spanish Lady T-6, Bob Richards, the Dragon Fyre Jet Truck, Nathan Hammond, Nick Coleman, and famed air show announcer Luke Carrico.

The Lake Cumberland Regional Airport terminal is located at 500 W O. Newell Drive in Somerset.

For more information, including a schedule of events and performers, as well as purchasing aircraft ride opportunities, visit lakecumberlandairshow.com.

“I really think it’s going to be a great day for the entire family to come out and see the airport, and see everything we do here,” said Baker. “The weather is going to be great. It’s going to be a great day.”

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