Dakota Thunder 2015 at Ellsworth AFB

Dakota Thunder 2015 was held at Ellsworth Air Force Base in Rapid City, South Dakota today. It was 100 degrees or more on the taxiway, but that didn’t stop a huge crowd from waiting through a long line of traffic to get onto the base and enjoy the greatest air force in the world.

There were plenty of amazing aircraft on display and in the air today, both old and new. Ages of the aircraft ran from the World War II era, to the newest fighter, the F-35.

There were many aircraft on static display on the taxiway at Ellsworth including a C-5 Galaxy transport, a C-17, a C-130, F-15s, F-16s, an F-18, a Blackhawk helicoper, a Lakota helicopter, a B-1 bomber, a B-2 bomber, a World War II B-25, an F-22, and two new F-35s.

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Flight demos included an F-86, a Russian MiG-17, a B-1, and of course, the Air Force Thunderbirds.

One of the Thunderbird pilots, Major Scott Petz, is a South Dakota native from the town of Faith. Before the Thunderbirds launched for their show, Major Petz administered the oath of enlistment to a group of Air Force enlistees.

Dakota Thunder will continue at Ellsworth AFB tomorrow with pretty much the same aircraft featured. Below are some pictures from the event today.

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Hover over the pictures or click on them to enlarge

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Bob Ellis has been the owner of media company Dakota Voice, LLC since 2005. He is a 10-year U.S. Air Force veteran, a political reporter and commentator for the past decade, and has been involved in numerous election and public policy campaigns for over 20 years. He was a founding member and board member of the Tea Party groups Citizens for Liberty and the South Dakota Tea Party Alliance. He lives in Rapid City, South Dakota with his wife and two children.
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