Park closed for spring cleaning
PALMDALE — Cool, sunny days may seem like a perfect time to visit Blackbird Airpark in Palmdale, but visitors will have to wait a couple weeks to make the trek.
The park, a satellite of the Air Force Flight Test Museum at Edwards Air Force Base, will be closed the next two weekends, while volunteers take on some early spring cleaning and reorganization tasks to update the popular site.
The park will be closed from Jan. 31 to Feb. 2 and from Feb. 7-9.
It will reopen for visitors on Feb. 14 — in time to take your sweetheart there.
Operated by the nonprofit Flight Test Historical Foundation and with volunteer docents serving as hosts, the airpark features the only display of one of the famed SR-71 Blackbird reconnaissance planes with one of its predecessors, the A-12.
The familiar Blackbirds can be seen alongside another reconnaissance aircraft, an early U-2 spy plane, the kind made famous when the Soviets shot down pilot Francis Gary Powers in 1960.
Next door, the airplane displays continue at the Joe Davies Heritage Airpark at Palmdale Plant 42.
Operated by the city of Palmdale, it commemorates the myriad aircraft that have been designed and built at this Air Force site.
The displays include an F-86 Sabre, F-100 Super Sabre, F-104 Starfighter, F-105 Thunderchief, A-4C Skyhawk, F-4 Phantom, A-7 Corsair, F-5 Tiger, F-101 Voodoo and F-14 Tomcat.
There’s also a C-140 that once saw duty for NASA, a T-38 Talon, a trainer related to the F-5 fighter; a B-52 bomber and a Burt Rutan-designed Triumph.
The most recent addition is one of two modified 747 airliners used by NASA to ferry the space shuttle fleet. Alongside the restored aircraft is a scale model of the B-2 stealth bomber, appearing as if in flight.
Blackbird Airpark, at 25th Street East and Avenue P in Palmdale, is regularly open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday through Sunday.
Admission and parking are free.