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Blue Angels to fly over Huntington Beach next week

FILE - In this Saturday, March 23, 2013 file photo provided by the Florida Keys News Bureau, the U.S. Navy's Blue Angels perform their precision aerobatics over the Florida Keys during the Southernmost Air Spectacular at Naval Air Station Key West, in Key West, Fla. The commander of Naval air forces announced on Tuesday, April 9, 2013 that the U.S. Navy has canceled the remainder of the elite Blue Angels demonstration team's 2013 season because of federal cuts. (AP Photo/Florida Keys News Bureau, Rob O'Neal, File)

If you sleep in, you may miss it. But the roar will likely wake you up.

An F/A 18 from the famed Blue Angels U.S. Navy flying team will be passing over Huntington Beach and the pier area between 9:30 and 10 a.m., Thursday, Jan. 12 as part of their preparations for the 2017 Breitling Huntington Beach Airshow, Sept. 29-Oct. 1.

The Blue Angels plane, piloted by Brandon Hempler and Dave Steppe, respectively, will be conducting a flight survey and technical evaluation of the airspace. Hempler, 32, and Steppe, 31, were announced as members of the demonstration flying team in July.

The Blue Angels will be one of the headline acts in the second HB Airshow along with the Royal Canadian Air Force Snowbirds. The inaugural show with the USAF Thunderbirds drew estimated crowds of more than 500,000 to the free weekend shows.

“The Huntington Beach Airshow is honored and excited to host two of the world’s premier military jet demonstration teams,” said Michael McCabe, the airshow director, in a statement when the show was announced in December at International Council of Airshows Convention in Las Vegas. “Their spectacular demonstrations will thrill the young and young at heart.”

Formed in 1946, the Blue Angels are the second-oldest aerobatic flying team in the world after the French Air Force Patrouille de France, created in 1931. The U.S. team consists of aviators from the Navy and Marine Corps, and flies distinctive blue and gold Boeing F/A-18 Hornets and the C-130, nicknamed “Fat Albert.”

Also appearing in the 2017 show will be the Snowbirds, with nine CT-114 Tutors. The team has been flying since 1971.

General admission to the Huntington Beach Airshow is free. Premium hospitality options are also available.

A portion of the proceeds from the air show support the Aerospace Education Foundation of Huntington Beach, a nonprofit that encourages education and careers in the aerospace and aviation fields.

Learn more about the Huntington Beach Airshow at hbairshow.com.

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