By Jeff Potts
OThunderbirds, corn dogs and an Emmy-nominated performer – Oshkosh has those and more this month as Event City wraps up the summer season in style.
The U.S Air Force Thunderbirds will make their first ever appearance in Oshkosh for the Experimental Aircraft Association’s annual AirVenture fly-in the opening weekend of August.
The high flying team will showcase their moves during a “practice show” (essentially a full dress rehearsal) at 5 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 1 immediately following the daily airshow featuring a full World War II warbird extravaganza and prior to the return of the Old Glory Honor Flight from Washington DC.
On Saturday, August 2, the Thunderbirds once again take to the skies above Oshkosh as the final act in the afternoon airshow. They’ll make their final appearance at 3 p.m. on Sunday. Special flight line and crowd restrictions will be in place for their performance each of the three days.
But the Thunderbirds are not the only major attraction the closing weekend of AirVenture.
Friday night they’ll welcome Big Bad Voodoo Daddy to Boeing Plaza for a concert (included with regular admission price) and on Saturday they’ll bring back their highly popular night time air show starting at 8 p.m.
Of course the grounds will be filled with workshops, speakers, demonstrations and anything you can imagine related to aviation throughout the weekend. Check out www.AirVenture.org for a complete schedule of events and admission rates.
If corn dogs and a demolition derby is more your idea of a good time – we’ve got that covered too.
The Winnebago County Fair runs August 5 to 10 at the Sunnyview Expo Center.
This year’s grandstand entertainment includes: Speedzone Auto Racing on Tuesday, Aug. 5; a rodeo on Wednesday, Aug. 6; tractor pulls on Thursday, Aug. 7 (kiddie version on Saturday, Aug. 9); and the demolition derby on Saturday, Aug. 9. Other activities include dock dogs, donkey racing, chainsaw carving, livestock judging, a midway and plenty of great food options. New this year is the Run or Dye 5K on Saturday, Aug. 9. Daily admission is $12 at the gate. For a complete schedule of events, go to www.WinnebagoCountyFairOnline.com.
While you’ll see some stars at AirVenture and the County Fair, the only guaranteed way to see a major motion picture star is to purchase tickets at the Grand Opera House for Jeff Daniels in concert. Best known as an Emmy-nominated actor, Daniels is also a talented blues musician. Along with the Ben Daniels Band (Jeff’s son) he’ll perform two shows inside the historic Grand on Sunday, August 31. Tickets are on sale now through the Grand Box Office, 100 High Avenue or online at www.GrandOperaHouse.org.
If you prefer your movie stars projected on a big screen then the Time Community Theater has a full collection of some of your favorite movies running this month. Among their free offerings in August are: “Hairspray,” “Office Space,” and “Flash Gordon.” If you’ve got $3 in your pocket you can enjoy “Top Gun,” “Dirty Dancing,” or “Wayne’s World.” Check them out at www.TimeCommunityTheater.com for dates and times.
We’ve also got a movie under the stars option this month. The Leach Amphitheater will screen “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2” on August 29. The movie starts at dusk. Admission is free.
And in true Event City style we’ve barely scratched the surface of what’s happening in Oshkosh this month.
Music lovers will help wrap up the Waterfest Concert Series with Hairball and America on Thursday, Aug 21 and Friday, Aug. 22, respectively.
Thursdays Between the Bridges continues on the Fox Rier with three August dates. Paul Robert and the Hall of Famers perform as the band on a boat (traveling up and down the river) on Aug. 7; it’s The Presidents on Aug. 14; and Big Back Yard on August 28. The boat travels between the UW Oshkosh Alumni Welcome Center and the Main Street Bridge making passes by Becket’s, Ground Round at River’s Edge and Dockside Tavern. Fratello’s, Mahoney’s and Brooklyn Grill join in the fun with food and drink specials. Visit all locations and get your Between the Bridges card punched and you could win more than $150 in gift certificates to participating venues. Find Thursdays Between the Bridges on Facebook for more information.
Finally, you only have a few weeks left to support the free Tuesday night concert series: Streaming Live at the Leach. Ask Your Mother performs on Aug. 5 and Auralai and The Guilty Wanted wrap up the series on Aug. 12. Music runs from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Leach Amphitheater.
For more ideas on how to experience everything Oshkosh, Wisconsin’s Event City has to offer, go to www.VisitOshkosh.com, find us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Vine or just pick up the phone and give us a call, (920) 303-9200.
Have fun Oshkosh!
Jeff Potts is the marketing director for the Oshkosh Convention & Visitors Bureau.
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