Dozens of planes to fly over National Mall to celebrate aviation

Dozens of planes will fly over the National Mall to celebrate general aviation Saturday.

“Heads up! Be aware that Saturday, 5/11, around noon, 60 planes representing the history of general aviation will fly down the Potomac and over the National Mall,” the National Park Service (NPS) posted on the social platform X Thursday. “The permitted event is closely coordinated with the [Federal Aviation Administration], Secret Service, and other agencies.”

The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), which calls itself “a not-for-profit organization dedicated to general aviation” on a webpage about its history, is the group behind the event. According to AOPA, the event will feature 15 separate “chapters” of general aviation in the U.S.

“This special event will take place over one of Washington, D.C.’s most restricted flight zones, P-56, something that’s never been done with [general aviation] aircraft,” according to the event webpage.

”Spectators on the ground and online will watch the aircraft fly above the Lincoln Memorial, down Independence Avenue, and past the Washington Monument,” the webpage continues. “Observing and commentating on the flyover from the rooftop of the National Museum of American History will be AOPA’s Thomas B. Haines and former CNN correspondent Miles O’Brien.”

The event will begin at 11:30 a.m. at Frederick Municipal Airport in Frederick, Md., and the planes will fly over Washington, D.C., from noon to 1 p.m. It will also be live streamed on AOPA’s YouTube page beginning at 11:45 a.m., per the website.

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