The Great Pacific Air Show comes to Orange County every year – where airborne performers skim the shore, soaring over the Huntington Beach Pier. Thousands of spectators pack the sand and street during the exciting three-day airshow. Now in it’s fourth year, the Great Pacific Airshow’s inaugural event was in 2016, and in 2018 the airshow drew more than 2 million visitors. While certain sections surrounding the pier are closed to water traffic, one of the best and most unforgettable ways to experience this event is from your boat. During the week prior to the event, locals will see the performers running through practice routines with Friday being the official rehearsal day. The main event runs Saturday and Sunday. Performances will be nearly identical all three days.
Great Pacific AirShow Details
Cancelled for 2020
Noon to 4:00 daily
Beach and Street Festival open all day
Huntington Beach, CA
Free to the public or purchase tickets for upgraded seating
The show center is located on the sand in front of the Waterfront Hilton with the one-mile aerial performance box extending north and south of this location. Stay within this one mile radius for the best viewing.
- The Drop Zone – $20 – Located in front of show center along the shoreline, this is the prime viewing destination. Includes access to private restrooms and a no-host bar with soda, water, beer, and wine. Seating is on the sand – beach chairs or blankets are recommended. Coolers and EX Ups are not allowed in the Drop Zone.
- Pier Seating – $30 – Access to unreserved first come, first served seating on the Huntington Beach Pier. Ear and sun protection recommended. Gates open at 11:00 am.
- Flight Line Club/Flight Line Reserved Tables – Includes premium views of the airshow located at show center, catered lunch, hosted beer and wine bar with soda and water. Located in a shady, private chalet with tables, chairs, and private restrooms. Seating is unreserved, unless you purchase a reserved table for 10. Club opens at 9 am with food and drink service at 11 am.
- $119 per person and $1,199 per table on Friday
- $169 per person and $1,699 per table on Saturday & Sunday
2019 Great Pacific AirShow Performances
- US Air Force Thunderbirds
- The Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, The Red Arrows
- Canadian Forces Snowbirds
- US Air Force F-35 Lightning II Demo
- US Air Force A-10C Thunderbolt II Demo Team
- JetPack Men
- SOCOM Para Commandos
- Yak 110 – Jeff Boerboon
- Red Bull Air Force
- USN F-18 Demo
- T-33 Ace Maker
- Mike Wiskus
- Lyon Air Museum’s C-47 Dakota
- U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III and KC 135 Stratotanker
- FedEx 757
- P-51 Mustang “Wee Willy II”
- F-8F Bearcat
Great Pacific AirShow Parking
All parking is first come, first served. City and State Beach parking lots are available along Pacific Coast Highway for a fee. Hourly parking is available near the pier at Pier Plaza and the Main Promenade Parking Structure. Street parking is available in surrounding areas. Consider walking, riding bikes, using public transit, or using Uber and Lyft. A bike valet will be available at PCH and Main Street for those who wish to check their bicycles while the enjoy the event.
The Great Pacific AirShow and the accompanying festival occupies a full one-mile stretch of beach and surrounding sidewalk area in Huntington Beach. Festival areas will include booths and displays from vendors and exhibitors, plus there will be designated areas for food trucks, beverage service, activities, entertainment, and more.
The airshow will be broadcast on KFI AM 640 via iHeart Media. Download the app to hear pilot interviews, airshow details, festival information and more.
On event days during the hours of 12 pm to 4 pm, swimmers, surfers, and boogie boarders should only enter the water to the waist.
What to bring: sun protection, an easy to carry chair and/or bag with blankets or towels for sitting in the sand, water bottles, light snacks, earplugs or earmuffs, camera/binoculars.
Prohibited items include tents and large umbrellas, weapons of any kind, noisemakers, balloons, kites, drones, laser pointers, drugs or drug paraphernalia, alcohol, loose batteries, fireworks, and anything considered a threat to public safety.
Food and drinks will be available at various locations throughout the festival grounds including at Show Center. There are also many dining options downtown, at Pacific City, and at the hotels along PCH.
RV Camping Packages are available at Sunset Vista RV Park. Additional RV camping is available nearby at Bolsa Chica State Beach.
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Heidi Deal is the author of the Newcomers Handbook to Living In Los Angeles & Orange County, an expert at exploring all that Orange County has to offer, and a children’s book author specializing in history and human rights.