By Mary O’KEEFE
On Saturday, the American Heroes Air Show will again be flying onto the field near Hansen Dam.
About 20 years ago, the show was held in Santa Monica. It has grown in popularity over the years and found a welcome home at Hansen Dam.
The show is different from most air shows because of the personal connection between pilot and crews, and the public.
“It has been fascinating for me over the years to really see how the community connects on a personal level with the pilots,” said James D. Paules of the American Heroes Air Show. “And these are the guys that are really heroes.”
Many of the pilots are from local law enforcement and fire departments. They work with search and rescue teams on a regular basis.
Montrose Search and Rescue will be at the event along with Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Air Rescue 5 with their brand new Super Puma that replaced their Vietnam-era helicopter.
In addition to the helicopters landing on the field, meeting the aircrews and being able to crawl into many of the air ships, there will also be the CODE3 Career Fair. There will be recruiting teams from law enforcement, public safety, and military and homeland security. Guests who are interested in careers in the criminal justice field will be able to speak to representatives from federal, state, regional and local organizations.
The event has grown and the one thing that has been a bit of an issue in the past is parking.
“We have had a [bit of a] struggle. We love having more and more guests with their families, so we tried VIP parking and [offering a]free shuttle last year and we will do the [same this year],” Paules said.
There will be parking at the field next to the event, but that fills up quickly. The extra parking will be just past the Hansen Dam Aquatics area at Osborne Street and Dronfield Avenue just off the Foothill (210) Freeway. Paules said there will be signs directing drivers to the parking lot.
The shuttles are free and will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission to the American Heroes Air Show is free. The event is on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Hansen Dam Recreation and Sports Complex, 11480 Foothill Blvd., Lake View Terrace. Exit the Foothill (210) Freeway at Osborne and turn south.