Annual open house at Nellis Air Force Base underway

Annual open house at Nellis Air Force Base underway

CREATED Nov. 7, 2012

Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- Thousands of people are expected to visit Nellis Air Force Base this weekend during its annual Aviation Nation Weekend.

Aviation Nation, which is celebrating 71 years of airpower this year, will feature military air demonstration teams, including the U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron (better known as the Thunderbirds) and numerous military and civilian ground displays.

Some of the other demonstrations include a Korean Conflict reenactment with an F-86 Sabre, a Learjet demonstration, F-15 Eagles and F-16 Fighting Falcon air-to-air demonstrations, a B-1B Lancer flyby, Red Horse jump demonstration, F-22 Raptor demonstration, Horsemen Flight Team and re-enlistment ceremony and ground show.

More than 100 aircraft will be on static display and 24 different aircraft will fly. There will also be a Kids' Zone and food, beverages and novelties will be available for purchase.

The annual open house was attended by more than 140,000 people last year.

The event is free to the public. Gates open at 9 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Opening ceremonies are at 10:30 a.m. each day and flying demonstrations will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Visitors will be transported by bus from the Las Vegas Motor Speedway at 7000 Las Vegas Blvd. North. Parking and transport is free.

This is the only time of year that the general public is allowed access to NAFB. Access is generally restricted and the base does not offer tours.

The primary missions at NAFB are operational testing of advanced aircraft and weapons systems, tactics development for war fighters around the globe, and advanced training for pilots and support crews.

NAFB covers more than 14,000 acres in the northeast corner of the Las Vegas valley and it has more than 15,000 square miles of airspace for flying operations. Because of its large size, the base is home to more squadrons than any other base in the Air Force.

A shuttle bus will also provide transportation from the front gate of the base throughout the event.

For more information about Aviation Nation, including a list of banned items on the base, click here.