What you need to know about the air show

Barricades were placed along U.S. 90 intersections earlier this week, and tonight at 10 Biloxi Public Works crews will begin placing traffic cones in the center lanes of the beachfront highway as plans move forward for the Thunderbirds air show this weekend.

Fans actually will get their first peek of “Thunder over the Sound: The Keesler & Biloxi Air & Space Show” on Friday afternoon, when the aerial demonstration team will begin rehearsals over Biloxi and the surrounding area.

So what do you need to know? Traffic will be heavy, especially on Saturday and Sunday, and it won’t be limited to U.S. 90. Expect heavy traffic on U.S. 90, where police plan to implement their one-lane traffic plan, as well as on Pass Road, Irish Hill, and roadways leading into Biloxi.

The air show will feature hands-on static displays along the Keesler flight line on Saturday and Sunday mornings, but if you plan to go base, you must park at one of the satellite parking venues and use the free shuttle service, which will transport you directly to the flight line or to the beachfront. Only those with military IDs will be allowed to drive onto base, and they can use only the Pass Road or Meadows gates.

On Saturday and Sunday afternoons, the air show moves to the Biloxi Beach, with air show central at White Avenue. Parking will be limited along U.S. 90, so you should use the satellite parking sites.

Here is what you need to know for the Thunder over the Sound 2019 Keesler and Biloxi Air and Space Show.

Times (For both days)
— 7:30 a.m.: Meadows and Pass Road gates open at Keesler for Military access only
— 8:30 a.m.: Performances on Keesler begin; static displays, kid’s zone, and STEM activities open on Keesler flight line
— 1 p.m.: Beachfront activities and performances begin
— 3:30 p.m.: Keesler flight line show area closes
— 5 p.m.: Beachfront activities close and performances end

Free admission for satellite parking lots, shuttles and entrance to air show; Coliseum charges $5 per vehicle for parking.

Parking & Shuttles
Five satellite parking lots with free continuous shuttle service from each parking site to the airshow
— Open parking lot off Oak and Fifth streets (209 Fifth St.)
Yellow shuttle route; Parking area, flight line and Biloxi Lighthouse
— IP public parking lot, Caillavet Street at Bayview Avenue (931 Bayview Ave.)
Purple shuttle route – Parking area, flight line and Biloxi Lighthouse
— Harrison Court Parking, Benachi Avenue and Back Bay Boulevard (370 Benachi Ave.)
Blue shuttle route – Parking area, flight line and Biloxi Lighthouse
— Oak Park Parking, Kensington and Yorkshire drives (259 Yorkshire Drive)
Red shuttle route – Parking area, flight line, and Keesler AFB visitors center
— Mississippi Coast Coliseum, U.S. 90 and Beauvoir Road (2350 Beach Blvd.)
Green shuttle route – Parking area, flight line, and White House Hotel

Handicapped parking
Available at all five satellite parking lots, Keesler AFB through the Meadows gate (must have valid driver’s license, car insurance card and current vehicle registration); and limited handicapped parking at VIP lot west of White Avenue.

Traffic Plan
On U. S. 90 from Oak Street to west of Coast Coliseum all right hand lanes will be open to traffic and the left hand lanes will be reserved for emergency vehicles and shuttle buses.

Prohibited items on Keesler

— Drones
— Bicycles, hover boards, scooters, and skateboards
— Coolers
— Backpacks
— Large purses, tote bags, and camera bags
— Firearms and edged weapons, i.e. knives, can openers or sharp tools
— Pets
— Alcohol
— Glass
— Umbrellas or popup tents

Permitted items on Keesler

— Small purses, and diaper bags (formula/breast milk and cold packs allowed)
— Camera, video cameras, and phones
— Folding chairs (remove chair from bags at security entrance)
— Strollers and wagons

Prohibited items on beach

— Glass, china or pottery
— Pets
— Drones, kites or parasailing in event area
— Firearms, air guns or bow and arrows
— ATVs, golf carts, or any other unlicensed vehicle on beach, sidewalks or boardwalks
— Amplified sound (allowed only by permit)
— Riding on tailgates, bumpers, roofs or hoods of vehicles

Permitted items on beach

— Ice chests
— Sunscreen
— Fluids
— Diaper bags (formula/breastmilk and cold packs allowed)
— Cameras, video cameras, and phones
— Folding chairs
— Strollers and wagons

Event rules

— Do not block traffic and follow instructions of police officers
— Obey posted speed limits and traffic signs
— Park only in marked areas; no parking on median or sidewalks. Respect private property.
— For safety, only cross roadways at designated locations, such as intersections or crosswalks.
— Do not obstruct boardwalks or sidewalks; pedestrians only
— Do not move or go around barricades.
— A helmet must be worn by all operators and passengers on motorcycles.
— Please clean up after yourself.
See air show map
See air show parking video
See air show traffic plan rack card
See air show website
See May issue of BNews Monthly