For the June 2012 Star-Spangled Sailabration War of 1812 bicentennial celebration, air show pilots practiced over Baltimore City and its suburb of Dundalk on June 14th & 15th.
People all over the area were treated to surprising, thrilling acts of aerobatic excellence by pilots who were loving life and living it to the fullest. I shot my practice session videos and photos from within about a city block of the Dundalk/Baltimore borderline.
A friend of mine who works out on Route 40 near the western Baltimore borderline was standing outside his shop, with a few other mechanics, when one of the Blue Angels came flying by rather low then turned its nose upward, increased the throttle and zoomed-a-roaring up into the wild-blue-yonder. My friend said it was like the pilot did it just for them mechanics out there.
I shot most of my practice session videos and photos from on a hill in Fort Holabird Park. That gave me a slightly elevated angle of view for as far as the tall buildings of downtown Baltimore to the west and the new Dundalk & Sollers Point high schools up on a hill to the east.
A lot of people living or working where those planes were whippin'-up a good time have fond memories of it. My favorite memories are of four Blue Angels in F/A-18 Hornets slidin' on past, low, over top of my roof - at the beginning of their first practice session. I saw them - by looking out my window from my computer work station - flying in a tight diamond formation - maintaining 18-inch wing tip to canopy separation - banking nicely to the left towards Ft. McHenry. The next day, their second day for practice, they came by the same way and I saw them again.
Thank you to all American military pilots and the ground crews who keep their planes in tip-top mechanical shape.
I have added a video to this. The video starts out with Blue Angels flying in from over Dundalk, over St. Helena and into Baltimore City passing Seagert Marine Terminal cranes. Then the planes pass over the USNS Comfort - right after doing a group flip-flop. They then bank right over the Ft. McHenry area, and fly over the Inner Harbor and downtown Baltimore. The navy blue and yellow birds take a left turn, head out over West Baltimore and fly southward sparkling in the sunlight and giving folks in South Baltimore a taste of the air shows to come. The F/A-18 Hornets disappear for a second or two into the distant, summer haze of hot city living and come out of it with air show smoke trails spouting out from behind and two birds up with two upside down over Ft. McHenry, the Comfort and the harbor waters by Seagirt. Back they fly, over St. Helena and the Baltimore City/Dundalk border and deep into Dundalk airspace again. A short ride above the Bayview Hospital neighborhood brings them across East Baltimore, back downtown, more smoke is let loose and over Ft. McHenry they break off in different directions.
That kind of really cool and exciting, super-duper jet aircraft action went on for a while longer - including some steep, high climbs and death-defying drops way back down close to the earth again. I didn't video it all and couldn't see it all, because the Blue Angels spread it around for miles in every direction.
People all over Baltimore and Dundalk had good times watching the Blue Angels flying around up in the wild-blue-yonder.