GREAT FALLS - "Flight Over The Falls," a military air show and open house which took place over the weekend in Great Falls was headlined by the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds aerial demonstration team.
The entry-free event took place at the Montana Air National Guard/Great Falls International Airport on Saturday and Sunday, featuring aerial demonstrations both days.
The Thunderbirds performance on Saturday was delayed slightly, but the jets began their performance at 3:20 p.m. and conducted their aerial acrobatics for the next 32 minutes.
This is the first Thunderbirds show in Great Falls since 2017, with thousands of attendees watching performances along with static displays.
"At Malmstrom, they do an amazing job stopping bad things from happening, the folks at MANG, you're never going to find a better unit than these guys, and they continue to be outstanding, whether it's a fighter group, or cargo group, and they continue to do just great work for this country, both domestically and in the foreign arena," said Sen. Jon Tester who attended the event.
Lt. Col. Darren Damiani, commander of the Operational Medical Readiness Squadron at Malmstrom Air Force Base, served as the medical director for the event.
"This is a joint effort between the 120th Air Guard and the 341st Missile Wing at Malmstrom, so it's pretty important with the 75th anniverary of the Air Force. What's really neat about this show is it really highlights the jointness between the Guard and the active duty within Great Falls and Montana."
Also: dispelling a rumor that was making the rounds on social media — there was NO CRASH at the air show on Saturday. Several people who were not at the air show said they smoke near the airport. The smoke, however, was from a scheduled and controlled explosives demonstration.