Atlantic City Airshow Prepares For 2022 Takeoff, Huge Crowd Expected

Written By Stephanie Loder on August 1, 2022 - Last Updated on August 2, 2022
Atlantic City Airshow

How many aircraft can fly over Atlantic City beach, boardwalk, and ocean in four or five hours? Spectators planning to attend the Aug. 24 Meet AC Atlantic City Airshow 2022 “Thunder Over the Boardwalk” will find out.

The tentative start time is 11 a.m. and there is no rain date. Each year, the airshow attracts an estimated 500,000 people. The midweek event also allows people a chance to take off work and plan an Atlantic City casino hotel vacation stay for the next few days.

There is a lot to know about the airshow, from the ground up. Here is a closer look at what AC visitors should know before attending this year’s show.

Who are some of the 2022 AC Airshow performers?

The Atlantic City Airshow is the world’s premier midweek beachfront airshow.

Acts are comprised of multiple military and civilian high-performance aircraft and helicopters from across the nation.

Flying in Atlantic City for the first time in five years is the U.S. Navy’s F/A-18 Super Hornet “Rhino” East Coast Demo Team.

More military flights include the Air Force Thunderbirds and the Army parachute Team Golden Knights.

Best Atlantic City Airshow viewing areas

Finding a cool place to watch the airshow can mean the top of a building, the window of a hotel, or just going outside. The airshow is easy to watch from any angle including on a boat or atop the famous Steel Pier Ferris Wheel.

The Flightline Club provides a VIP chalet on the beach in the center of the airshow flight path.

The private viewing area (located at the beach and Bellevue Avenue) includes a shaded tent, tables, and chairs and is close to restrooms. All seating is unreserved and available on a first-come, first-serve basis. The Flightline Club opens at 10 a.m. and catering and beverage service begins at 11:30 a.m. Tickets are $75 per person (children under 5 are free).

As of early Monday afternoon, only “few seats remain.”

How hard is it to find Atlantic City Airshow parking?

Parking lots are located throughout the Atlantic City resort.

Metered parking is available along Atlantic Avenue and machines use credit cards for payment.

The Greater Atlantic City Chamber of Commerce website features a parking map with places to check out for paid parking including:

  • Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall at Mississippi Avenue and the Boardwalk
  • Convention Center garage at Michigan Avenue
  • Ohio Avenue parking lot (Ohio and Baltic)
  • The Wave parking garage (Mississippi and Fairmount avenues)
  • Tanger Outlets The Walk parking
  • Claridge Hotel garage (107 South Ohio Ave.)
  • Stockton University parking garage, 101 S. Lincoln Place

Why is ‘Thunder over the Boardwalk’ such a big deal?

The first show took place on Aug. 27, 2003, in celebration of the 100th anniversary of powered flight.

Crowds have grown every year since adding to the city’s tourism and economy, said Greater Atlantic City Chamber President Michael Chait.

Chait said the airshow is unique.

“I think people come back to this every year because of the excitement and the thrill of watching the airshow on the beach over the ocean and the fact that it’s a free event,” he said.

Meet AC president and CEO Larry Seig agreed.

“Visitors flock to our destination for this iconic event every year and they look forward to cheering as the planes dip and dive over the Atlantic Ocean,” he said.

Civilian air acts join the 2022 lineup

Chris Thomas Airshows, Paul Dougherty Airshows, Full Throttle Formation Team and Jim Beasley will take to the skies above Atlantic City.

Chris Thomas of Chris Thomas Airshows is a third-generation pilot. He earned his pilot’s license at age 17 with his father, who was his flight instructor.

At this year’s AC Airshow, Thomas will perform a low-level aerobatic routine in a 1941 North American SNJ-2.

David Schultz, the president and owner of David Schultz Airshows, wants everyone who comes to the Atlantic City Airshow to go into “aviation overload.”

“The one thing our company is known for and the thing our company has the most fun doing is keeping it as fast-paced and surprising to the public,” he said.

The Full Throttle Formation Team will perform for the first time at the 2022 Atlantic City Airshow. Based in Georgia, the pilots comprise America’s largest precision formation team.

“The team is honored to join the stellar lineup for our first time performing in Thunder Over the Boardwalk, and we would like to make this Airshow our annual tradition,” said Dean “Gumby” Marvin along with the members of his crew.

For Paul, Caroline, and Emily Dougherty, flying is a family affair. Paul Dougherty of Dougherty Airshows has been flying airshows since 1998.

“I love what I do,” Paul Dougherty said. “I can’t imagine doing anything else.”

Photo by Shutterstock
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Stephanie Loder

Stephanie Loder is a freelance writer for PlayNJ. She provides coverage of New Jersey's Atlantic City casinos while also focusing on the beach, boardwalk, and special gaming events. Prior to writing for PlayNJ, she covered Atlantic City government, breaking news, and casinos for The Press of Atlantic City in Pleasantville, N.J.

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