LAKELAND — The annual Sun ‘n Fun International Fly-In & Expo takes off Tuesday in Lakeland.
Now in its 41st year, the festival is one of the largest air shows in the U.S., drawing thousands of people to see one-of-a-kind planes, airplane stunt shows and a myriad of exhibits on flying and aviation history.
But its those flying machines that are the real stars – as Bay News 9 reporter Randi Nissenbaum found out first hand. She strapped on her flying gear and got a first-hand look at what it takes to be a stunt pilot.
Nissenbaum, with some help from Jack Links stunt plane pilot Jeff Boerboon, took to the skies above Lakeland, performing flips, dips and spins at 3,000 feet above ground.
She admitted to being a little nervous, then exhilarated and then relieved to be back on terra firma.
“That was crazy,” Nissenbaum said of her flight. “We landed safely and that was amazing and I didn’t even have to use my parachute. That was a little taste of Sun ‘n Fun this week. That was awesome!”
Some new airshows being touted this year at the event include the “Screamin’ Sasquatch,” a revamped 1929 World War II plane outfitted with a jet engine, as well as the Breitling jet team from France. The event also will feature live music, food and kids activities.
The event runs today through Sunday.