‘A flying museum’: WWII aircraft rides available in Sioux Falls this weekend

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — A WWII plane is in Sioux Falls right now, and you have the chance to fly in it this weekend.

The B-17 bomber arrived in town earlier this week.

KELOLAND News followed along and some people rode in the plane Friday. The B-17 took off from Maverick Air Center in Sioux Falls.

The flight lasted 20-25 minutes.

Not only do you get a bird’s eye view of the landscape, but an up-close look at history

Patrick Hicks and his 11-year-old son Sean took a flight on Sentimental Journey, a B-17 bomber built in 1945, Friday morning.

“It’s not often you get to be in a flying museum, which is essentially what this is,” Patrick Hicks said.

Pete Scholl is the pilot in command of the WWII plane.

“It did not see any actual combat, but it was over in the Philippines when the war ended on its way to be a replacement aircraft,” Pilot in Command Pete Scholl said.

As the plane took off, it took passengers back in time.

“It’s kind of a time machine. It’s a time capsule and we’re able to kind of bring this experience out to places like Sioux Falls and show people what it was like to–a little bit what it was like–to fly during World War II and what it was like on those missions just a bit,” Scholl said.

This wasn’t Hicks’ first time in a World War II plane, but it didn’t make the experience any less impressive.

“Roaring over the city and trying to just imagine the monumental bravery that these 18 and 19 year old kids really had when they were flying over Nazi Germany to fight fascism, and so many of them perished over the skies of Germany. It was really something to be over the plane and imagine myself maybe in the early 1940s,” Hicks said.

And he got to experience all of it alongside his son.

“It’s fun to always do things as fathers and sons, but there’s something really special about this once in a lifetime type of ride,” Hicks said.

The B-17 is assigned to the Commemorative Air Force’s Airbase Arizona.

You can visit the organization’s website to view prices and schedule a flight Saturday or Sunday.

Tours of the plane are also available.

According to the website, a ride on a P-51C fighter is also available Saturday.

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