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Chicago Air And Water Show 2009 Schedule, Highlights (VIDEO, SLIDESHOW)

Huffington Post   First Posted: 09/14/09 06:12 AM ET Updated: 05/25/11 02:50 PM ET

The famed Chicago Air & Water Show, one of the largest spectator events in the country and the longest-running air show in North America, kicks off its 51st annual show Saturday in the waters of Lake Michigan and the skies above its Chicago coast.

The 2009 lineup includes such staples as the U.S. Army's Golden Knights, the Navy's Leap Frogs parachute teams, and the fan-favorite stunt show Sean D. Tucker and Team Oracle.

Watch Tucker in the air:


The show runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, but get there early: with over 2 million people expected to attend, coveted spots along North Avenue Beach will be hard to come by. There were already crowds along the lakefront for Friday's practice runs.

The Coast Guard will direct boaters looking to view from the water starting at 8 a.m. And watch what you pack in the cooler, the city'slist of banned items is extensive, including alcohol, barbecue grills, pets, tents, flag poles and umbrellas, though enforcement can be spotty.

The military plans to show off several fighter planes, including the F-15, F-16 and the A-10. Blackhawk and Apache helicopters and a P-51 Mustang are expected as well.

New this year will be Red Bull's trick helicopter, which can perform back flips, barrel rolls and pilot Chuck Aaron's signature move, the "Chuckcilvak."

Watch Aaron perform in his chopper, the "Bull Cow"

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Watch Bill Murray jump with the Golden Knights at last year's show:

The Tribune spoke with veteran show announcer Herb Hunter for tips on what to look for during the show. Check out more lists of highlights here, here and here.