Reunite at Wings & Waves Alumni Weekend
Embry-Riddle alumni will not only be gathering for Homecoming this week, thousands will be looking to the skies for fellow Eagles performing in Embry-Riddle’s Wings and Waves Air Show on Oct. 13-14 in Daytona Beach, Fla.
Numerous alumni will participate in the beachside air show including Maj. J.R. Williams (’01, PC), Maj. Jason Moore (’00, DB) and Tech. Sgt. Amber Alumpe (’10, WW) of the Thunderbirds, world-record holding skydiver Cheryl Stearns (’78, ’85, WW), GEICO Skytyper lead solo pilot Steve Salmirs (’80, DB) and Black Diamond Jet Team Leader Jerry “Jive” Kerby (’98, WW).
“Some of the best pilots in the world are educated at Embry-Riddle,” said university President and CEO John P. Johnson. “Having them perform at Wings and Waves is testimony to that fact. It's going to be a great show.”
Special alumni homecoming receptions are scheduled before and after the air show, with the Alumni Awards Dinner set for Friday, Oct. 12 and eagleNIGHT “Millennium Celebration” on Saturday, Oct. 13. All alumni are invited to Friday’s dinner at the beachside Wyndham Oceanwalk Resort, where outstanding Eagles will be recognized for their professional achievements and contributions to their community and alma mater. Eagles will be also able to see the direct impact of their charitable giving, when they are introduced to the first student recipient of the Embry-Riddle Alumni Association Endowed Scholarship.
The following evening, alumni will gather for a sunset view of the Embry-Riddle flight line for the traditional eagleNIGHT gathering. Alumni will enjoy live music, have a chance to meet graduating seniors, and catch up with their favorite faculty and staff members.
More than 40 aircraft will soar over the Atlantic Ocean at Wings and Waves. This year, admission is free at the alumni viewing area. Graduates are invited to stop by the Alumni Association tent to check in and pick up refreshments and snacks. A number of student projects will also be on displaty at the Daytona Beach Bandshell.
The air show begins at 11 a.m. daily on the shore in front of the Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort. The event, which is the only air show in North America to host three jet demonstration teams, is free and open to the public. Click here to view Alumni Homecoming Weekend events on Oct. 11-14.
This year’s featured performers include:
• U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds – Now in their 59th year of wowing audiences with their combat fighter pilot skills, the 130-person squadron deemed the USAF's "Ambassadors in Blue" represents nearly 700,000 active duty, guard and reserve airmen serving at home and abroad – including two team members who are Embry-Riddle alumni and another graduate tapped for the team later this year. Prescott graduate Williams (lead pilot No. 5) and Daytona Beach alumnus Moore (maintenance officer) will be joined by 2011 Embry-Riddle Worldwide graduate Capt. Joshua Boudreaux at left wing as Thunderbird No. 2 for the 2013 team. The demonstration is a mix of six aircraft performing formation flying and solo routines. www.afthunderbirds.com
• Canadian Forces Snowbirds – The iconic Snowbirds Demonstration Team (431 Squadron) composed of about 80 members of the Canadian Forces and the Royal Canadian Air Force will perform only once in Florida this year – and this is it. The Snowbirds’ pilots and aircraft technicians spend the winter months at their home base in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Canada practicing more than 50 five-, seven- and nine-plane formations. The Snowbirds fly the Canadair CT-114 Tutor, a Canadian-built jet that was used by the Canadian Forces as a basic pilot-training aircraft from 1963 until 2000. www.rcaf-arc.forces.gc.ca/snowbirds.
• Black Jet Diamond Team – Making their first appearance, the Lakeland, Fla.-based aerobatic civilian-owned jet team will fly two L-39s led by Embry-Riddle alumnus Jerry “Jive” Kerby. www.blackdiamondjetteam.com
• GEICO Skytypers – A flight squadron of six vintage WWII airplanes performing precision flight maneuvers, the Skytypers are the only civilian squadron currently appearing at airshows flying WWII aircraft, the SNJ-2. Of the 11 SNJ-2 airplanes still in existence, the team uses six. Embry-Riddle Daytona Beach Campus alumnus Steve Salmirs is the lead solo and executive officer. www.geicoskytypers.com
• F-18 Tactical Demonstration – This aerial demo features the Strike Fighter Squadron 106 (VFA-106) flying the Navy’s newest tactical aircraft, the F/A-18 Super Hornet.
• Mike Goulian – For the past two decades Goulian has entertained crowds, having earned the U.S. National Advanced Champion title (the youngest ever at age 22 in 1990) and the Unlimited National Aerobatic Championship and represented the United States three times in the World Aerobatic championships. He also was one of the Red Bull international race pilots. www.mikegoulian.com
• Matt Chapman – Sponsored by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and an airline pilot when not performing, Chapman began flying aerobatics in 1984 and quickly worked his way up to the highest level of competition aerobatics – the Unlimited category. At the 1998 World Aerobatic Championships, Chapman was the highest-ranking American pilot, finishing third in the world with a bronze medal and led the Men’s Team to a silver medal. www.mattchapman.com
• Rob Holland – Flying the MX2 Aerobatic Aircraft by MX Aircraft Ultimate Airshows, Holland earned his title as current U.S. National Unlimited Aerobatic Champion and World Gold Medal winner in freestyle aerobatics by pushing the envelope of advanced aerobatic aircraft with a mixture of high and low altitude maneuvers. www.ultimateairshows.com
• John Klatt – Sponsored by Air National Guard, Lt. Col. Klatt flies the C-130 Hercules and the F-16 for the Guard and competes in aerobatic contests on both the regional and national level. During his more than 20 years with the Air National Guard, he flew combat, air support and humanitarian missions in the F-16 “Fighting Falcon” and the C-130 “Hercules.” www.johnklattairshows.com
• Corkey Fornof – A test pilot, corporate pilot, aerial coordinator, fixed-wing camera pilot, technical advisor, actor and stunt pilot, Fornof has 17,000-plus hours in over 287 different types of aircraft. His resume includes more than 2,600 low-level aerobatic performances, and he formed the first civilian high-performance aerobatic flight demonstration team, using World War II fighters. He also formed and led the first civilian jet demonstration team, flying BD-5Js. www.corkeyfornof.com
• Jason Newburg – Instructed and mentored by numerous top air show performers in the industry (including Michael Goulian, Sean D. Tucker, Jim Leroy, Clint McHenry, Nikolai Timofeev and Bill Stein), he flies high-performance solo and formation performances in several types of aircraft, including the Pitts S1C. He also is the former vice president of the Embry-Riddle Sport Aviation Club and builds aircrafts as well as flies them. www.viperairshows.com
• Cheryl Stearns – An Embry-Riddle alumna and former U.S. Airways captain, Stearns also is one the most successful competitive skydivers globally with 30 world records in parachuting (including a Guinness World Record for the most parachute jumps in 24 hours by a woman, 352 jumps Nov. 8-9, 1995), more than 17,000 jumps logged and was the first female member of the U.S. Army’s elite parachuting team, the Golden Knights. www.stratoquest.com
• The Plunkett WW1 Aviation Collection – Great Britain’s Sopwith F.1 Camel and German Fokker DR.I Triplane will both hit the skies for this special performance. The Camel, named so because of the humped fairing over its twin machine guns, shot down more German aircraft (1,294) than any other Allied plane. The Dreidecker, a small, lightweight and highly maneuverable dogfighter, is best known for its image as the “Red Baron’s” aircraft during WWI as it was flown by ace Baron Manfred von Richthofen.
Longtime air show favorite and former airline pilot SkyTalker Danny Clisham (www.dannyclisham.com) will serve as master of ceremonies, and there is a scheduled U.S. Coast Guard Search and Rescue Demonstration. There also will be an Air Show performers autograph session and special concert by country band Little Texas at 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 13 at the Peabody Auditorium. Tickets will be on sale soon at the Peabody box office and online at Ticketmaster.com.
In addition to Embry-Riddle’s title sponsorship, other sponsors include Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort, GEICO, LoPresti, Goodyear, Whelen, Air National Guard, Volusia County, City of Daytona, WNDB1150 and KRO93.1
For sponsorship involvement, volunteer opportunities, visitor information and media registration, go to the event’s official website www.wingsandwaves.com or contact Rick Grissom at (386) 256-0451.