For two and a half months each year, the Imperial Valley has something that no other place has: the Blue Angels.
The Blue Angels, the U.S. Navy’s precision flight team, have been doing their winter training at Naval Air Facility El Centro for nearly 50 years. The Blue Angels love the sunny skies and relatively open air space they find in the Imperial Valley, but we are convinced they also appreciate how much they are cherished by local residents. And cherished they truly are.
For 70-plus days each year Valley residents, particularly in certain areas of the county, can watch the Blue Angels’ pilots zoom around local skies, doing aerial acrobatics in full and partial formations as they prepare for another season of performing before awe-struck fans. The pilots are training six days a week and doing two or three flights a day while in the Valley, so they are in our skies a lot.
Valley residents also feel privileged to have the members of the Blue Angels ground and air crews in our area each year, participating in various events and generally being part of the community. They are true gentlemen and gentlewomen and a pleasure to have among us.
Each year the Blue Angels culminate their stay in the Valley and start their performance season with the annual local air show, which is one of this area’s most anticipated and beloved events. This year the air show is scheduled for March 16. The Blue Angels then head around the country, showcasing the skills of Navy and Marine Corps pilots and serving as a recruiting tool.
And as we hear of those spectacular events around the nation, Imperial Valley residents can and do say: “Yes, those are our Blue Angels.”
THE ISSUE: Blue Angels return
WE SAY: Overjoyed they’re back.
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