Fort Lauderdale Air & Sea Show is Back

The Fort Lauderdale Air and Sea show hasn't been held since 2007

By Willard Shepard and Todd Wright
|  Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011  |  Updated 6:29 PM EDT
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The popular event will make its return in 2012.

The popular event will make its return in 2012.

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After being grounded for a few years, the Fort Lauderdale Air and Sea show is ready to take off in a big way.

The mega tourist event will return to the beach on April 28 and 29, 2012, officials said Wednesday.

Officials said the Air and Sea Show, which has attracted more than a million people to the event, will be around through at least 2013.

"We're going to bring it back annually. We are back for good," Bryan Lilley, president of B. Lilley Inc. and organizer of the event. "The Fort Lauderdale show is the Super Bowl of air and sea shows. It will be a spectacle."

Military planes and sea vessels haven't converged on the Fort Lauderdale sand since 2007 after organizers struggled to find sponsors to fund the event and the city said it didn't have the money to provide the proper support for such a large production.

A scaled back version nearly got off the ground last year, but was canceled at the last minute because of money problems.

No such problems exist in the latest rendition of the air and sea extravaganza. Lilley said he plans to partner with major companies such as Coca-Cola, Jack Daniels and Geico as well as local sponsors.

Support from local and regional businesses will be key to getting the show off the ground financially, Lilley said.

The high-flying aerobatics, the Thunderbirds have been invited to the 2012 show and organizers are trying to get the world famous Blue Angels for 2013. New civilian aerobat teams will also be featured.

Lilley said he is in talks to incorporate some of the vessels from Fleet Week, which will be held around the same time.

“This was a great thing for us before and it's wonderful to have it back,” Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jack Seiler said.

For the latest information and updates on the new and improved Fort Lauderdale Air and Sea Show, stay tuned to NBCMiami and get regular updates at www.lauderdaleairshow.com.

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