The 2014 Amigo Airsho opened to a far smaller crowd at it’s new home in the Santa Teresa airport, formally referred to as the Dona Ana International Jetport at Santa Teresa, this past weekend.  New Mexico authorities imposed a limit of 13,000 total attendees per day at the event, compared to over 50,000 per day in previous shows, and it looks like the show easily attracted that many each day.  Having been held on the Biggs Army Airfield for the past 28 (or so) years, it was no small feat to uproot and replant the show 26 miles away!  But, the volunteers prevailed and put on a great show in spite of wind and rain on the show days. 

The headline act was the Unites States Thunderbirds, who flew their F-16 jets in a bone shaking display of power and precision flying.  Leading to the Thunderbirds were a variety of other high performance aircraft including, Franklin’s Flying Circus with Kyle Franklin, Rifle Airshows with Joe Shetterly, the US Army Golden Knights parachute team and even a jet powered school bus.  In the end, though, it was the jet powered outhouse that got the most laughs from the crowd. 

On Sunday the field was hastily cleared as a brief but intense thundershower lumbered over the field leaving an amazing double-rainbow over the airstrip.  The rain shortened the father-son act of Greg and Joe Shetterly.  Greg and son Joe each flew high performance propeller aircraft in a death defying show of what looks like close-calls and near-misses, but which are really a highly choreographed maneuvers.  Later, the Thunderbirds called their show off early as bolts of lightning could be seen off to the west where more showers were brewing. Even with the rain and the adjusted show schedule, the happy smiles I saw made me understand that these folks get it;  it’s all part of the show and you never know what will happen at this now regional event.  

The show had a new feel to it with the new location and smaller size; a good feel.  You should definitely put this event on your calendar for next year.  I know that along with every other Amigo Airsho enthusiast, my wish is for the show to prosper in Santa Teresa for many more years to come! 

Contributed by John Olivas, 13 year airshow volunteer with the Amigo Airsho