Air and Water show kicks off this weekend - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Air and Water show kicks off this weekend

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - The 56th annual Air and Water show kicks off Saturday at 10 a.m.

Friday, the pilots practiced their routes before the official kick off of the free event. Participants and organizers say it is a time to make sure everything runs smoothly. 

"Wednesday afternoon I was out here and all of a sudden the blue angels went by and I said they're back," exclaimed Bob Stapleton.

More than 2.2 million people come out to the event every year to see the amazing show.  This year, many Chicagoans are excited to see the Blue Angels return to the sky.

Organizers say the event is important to the city.

"Coming to Chicago brings a ton of excitement for us. This has been a show we have been looking forward to for a long time. The food, the people and the city - flying here is unlike any other show," Commander Nate Barton said.

Chicago Transit Authority officials say they will be longer trains operating both days on the blue, brown, orange and green lines. Officials say those riding the brown line should allow extra travel time because of a weekend track closure. There'll also be additional bus service on two routes.

The show itself won't cost you a dime.

If you want to watch the show in style, though, it could cost you a pretty penny. Places like Caffe Oliva on the Ohio Street Beach and Castaways on North Avenue Beach have food and drink packages starting around $120 per person.

"Kitchen is prepared, we're staffed up we have a huge beer trailer in the back of the restaurant lots of kegs and we are ready to go this weekend," said Josh Schonfeld of Caffe Oliva.

However, people who came out and saw the rehearsal said they understand why.

"Like here, you're looking at some big dollars tomorrow and Sunday. Today they were even charging for during the show, but it's well worth it," Stapleton added.

You can see the show from North Avenue Beach, the Lakefront, from Oak Street Beach to Fullerton, and Ohio Street Beach.

On Friday, people at Oak Street Beach said they just brought out a towel and food, and sat back and enjoyed the show.

“Everybody just kind of stopped and stared and looked up for a solid 15 minutes or so,” said spectator Adam Rodriguez.

FOX 32's Alexa Helms contributed to this story.

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