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Where and when Blue Angels will be flying above Buffalo this weekend – and how to see them

Where and when Blue Angels will be flying above Buffalo this weekend – and how to see them

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Blue Angels

The planes get into formation during a practice flight.

What: The famed Blue Angels of the U.S. Navy will be flying above Buffalo as the featured performers of the Thunder on the Buffalo Waterfront Airshow.

When: Noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Where: The Outer Harbor.

Tickets: Tickets for the event are sold out.

Tickets were available for general admission per vehicle at $149, which included space next to the vehicle to watch the show; or individual VIP ticket packages at $99 (reserved seating and other amenities) or $139 (reserved seating "at the water's edge").

Alternate viewing at Buffalo Harbor State Park: There will be a $20 fee per vehicle at the park. There are no presale tickets and parking is first come, first served.

No campers or RVs will be permitted into the park. Empire Passports and other New York State Parks parking programs will not be accepted. 

Walkers or bikers to the park "are welcome to enjoy the show from the green space in the park."

Road closures: Both Route 5 exit ramps to the Outer Harbor will be closed from 8 a.m. to approximately 6 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday. 

Starting at 3 p.m. on both days, Route 5 will have right-lane closures for both the inbound and outbound roadways so traffic entering Route 5 has a free-flow lane.  

No-boating zone: During the shows, boats will not be allowed in a certain area of the harbor; authorities will be patrolling the area.

Boat launches closed: Buffalo Harbor State Park's boat launches, as well as the car-top boat launch, will be closed Thursday at dusk and will reopen following the Sunday show.

Slip holders at the Sun Life Marina are being required to use the north entrance at Ohio Street only. Slip holders with a valid parking pass will be permitted in the lot on a first come, first served basis.

What about that restaurant? Those interested in dining at Charlie’s Boatyard, 1111 Fuhrmann Blvd., will be required to enter at the Ohio Street entrance and purchase a $40 food voucher to be used at the restaurant on the date of purchase.

Wasn't this show held in Niagara Falls? Yes. The event was formerly held at the Niagara Falls Air Base as "The Thunder of Niagara." It was one of the largest air shows in the country. This year it was originally scheduled for Niagara Falls for this weekend, but it was canceled in March due to Covid-19. 

Planes and performers: The Blue Angels jet demonstration team, celebrating its 75th season, will feature new F-18 Super Hornets and the C-130 J-Model "Fat Albert."

Also appearing are the U.S. Air Force F-16 Viper Team, U.S. Air Force C-17 Demonstration Team, Canadian CF-18 Hornet Team, World Aerobatic Champion Rob Holland and Niagara Falls native Rick Volker.

Pre-show buzz: Planes could be seen – and heard – downtown during the week as planes prepared for the show and conducted promotional flights, including for some members of the local media as well as Buffalo Bills coach Sean McDermott

What if it rains? In the event of inclement weather, the show may be canceled, according to the event website. If there is a cancellation, refunds will be processed automatically at the point of purchase.

Forecast: There is a chance of showers for Friday's practice as well as Saturday's session, while forecasters are calling for clear skies during Sunday's show, according to the National Weather Service.  

For the noon to 4 p.m. window on Friday, showers are likely at noon and there is a chance of thunder. From 1 to 3 p.m. there is a chance of rain, with a slight chance of thunder from 1 to 2 p.m. 

On Saturday, there is between a 30%-40% chance of rain between 1 and 4 p.m. After 2 p.m. there is a chance of thunder.

For Sunday, there is no rain or thunder in the forecast during show time.   

The Buffalo News: Good Morning, Buffalo

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News Staff Reporter

Long Island native, University at Buffalo graduate, part of the breaking news and criminal justice team for two years. Hired by The News in 1999, I covered high school sports for 15 years before being named deputy sports editor.

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