National Museum of the U.S. Air Force

The impacts of the partial federal government shutdown are beginning to ripple across Ohio.

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force near Dayton has closed, canceling all tours and other events. The museum has some 1 million visitors a year and is a popular place for military reunions.  A spokeswoman has said that all but three security staff members of 95 museum employees would be furloughed.

Five companies will compete to build a new $46 million aircraft and space gallery to open in 2015 at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force in southwest Ohio.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will select the winning bid for construction of the 224,000-square-foot building for the museum at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton. The building will house rare presidential and research and development aircraft, spacecraft and cargo planes.

Air Force Museum Releases Plan For New Building

May 23, 2013
National Museum of the U.S. Air Force

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force has unveiled its plans for its fourth building. It will now include aircraft from the Research and Development gallery, along with Presidential Aircraft. Visitors will now be able to see the popular XB 70  and experimental aircraft, like the flying saucer like Avrocar. The plans also include an expanded Space gallery.

Dan Patterson

Seventy years ago this week American aviators were at war in Europe. In airplanes known as the B-17 Flying Fortress they were flying bombing missions over Germany. One of those planes, nicknamed “The Memphis Belle” flew its 25th combat mission on May 17th, 1943, and then came home to the US with its crew. One of the Memphis Belle’s first stops was Wright Field in Dayton, where today she’s being restored at the National Museum of the United States Air Force.

Jerry Kenney

Actor, Anthony Edwards has signed on to take part in this week’s presentation of TOP GUN 3D at the new Air Force Museum Theater. Edwards, who played the role of Navy Lt. Nick “Goose” Bradshaw in the 1986 Paramount Pictures blockbuster, will co-present one of two scheduled screenings  of the new 3D version of TOP GUN. 

It’s all part of this year’s Film Festival of Aviation.  This week, I spoke with the festival’s founder, Ron Kaplan to get the run-down on this year’s entries, and the Air Force Museum's new big screen theater.

The national Air Force museum in southwest Ohio will close some galleries starting next month due to federal budget cuts.

The director of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force says the presidential and research and development galleries will be closed until further notice beginning May 1.

Museum Director Jack Hudson says popular exhibits in the affected galleries include President John F. Kennedy's Air Force One and the XB-70 Valkyrie. He says museum officials hope to reopen those galleries as soon as possible.

Thomas Griffin died in late February - he was one of 80 American servicemen who flew a legendary mission in World War Two.    They were known as Doolittle's Raiders.    Griffin lived in Cincinnati and he
was 96 years old.  Now only four members of that elite group survive.

WYSO aviation commentator Dan Patterson knew Griffin and tells us his story.

A general says automatic defense budget cuts will slow research and technology development and cancel some special night and weekend events at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force in Ohio.

Gen. Janet Wolfenbarger leads the Air Force Materiel Command from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton. She tells the Dayton Daily News the cuts likely will delay aircraft replacement and modernization, halt most flight testing and create a backlog in maintenance operations.

Presidential Aviating

Jan 21, 2013

Presidents and flight had a quiet start in the summer of 1909, when Orville returned to Ft. Myer to complete the Army trials that ended abruptly with his crash in September of the previous year.  The Army allowed the Wrights to return as they had already more than fulfilled the contract.  This time there were many observers, including fellow Ohioan President Williams Howard Taft.  A tent was set up, and he sat with the Wrights' sister Katharine.

Check out the Giant Scale Radio Controlled Model Aircraft Air Show Saturday, Sunday and Monday at the National Museum of the US Air Force. See daring acrobatics performed by model jets, helicopters and warbirds during this three-day air show.

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