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Kentucky Air National Guard plays host to military aircraft for Thunder Over Louisville

Tech. Sgt. Pierre Julien, a crew chief from the 20th Fighter Wing at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., configures navigation gear in the cockpit of an F-16 Fighting Falcon while sitting on the flightline of the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisviille, Ky., on April 15, 2010. The aircraft is part of the U.S. Air Force Viper East Demo Team, which is in town to participate in Thunder Over Louisville this weekend. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

Tech. Sgt. Pierre Julien, a crew chief from the 20th Fighter Wing at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., configures navigation gear in the cockpit of an F-16 Fighting Falcon while sitting on the flightline of the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. The aircraft is part of the U.S. Air Force Viper East Demo Team, which is in town to participate in Thunder Over Louisville this weekend. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

Staff Sgt. Gabriel Castillo, a U.S. Air Force crew chief with the 4th Fighter Wing at Seymor Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., stands by to marshall an F-15 Strike Eagle to its parking spot on the Kentucky Air National Guard Base flightline in Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. The F-15 will participate in this weekend's Thunder Over Louisville airshow. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

Staff Sgt. Gabriel Castillo, a U.S. Air Force crew chief with the 4th Fighter Wing at Seymor Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., stands by to marshall an F-15 Strike Eagle to its parking spot on the Kentucky Air National Guard Base flightline in Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. The F-15 will participate in this weekend's Thunder Over Louisville airshow. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

Senior Airman Brandon Rhodes, a crew chief with the U.S. Air Force Strike Eagle Demo Team, climbs into the cockpit of an F-15 fighter jet at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky.,  on April 15, 2010. Airman Rhodes and the rest of the Strike Eagle Demo Team are assigned to 4th Fighter Wing out of Seymor Johnson, Air Force Base, N.C. The team is in town for this weekend's Thunder Over Louisville Air Show.

Senior Airman Brandon Rhodes, a crew chief with the U.S. Air Force Strike Eagle Demo Team, climbs into the cockpit of an F-15 fighter jet at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. Airman Rhodes and the rest of the Strike Eagle Demo Team are assigned to 4th Fighter Wing out of Seymor Johnson Air Force Base, N.C. The team is in town for this weekend's Thunder Over Louisville Air Show.

An F-16 Fighting Falcoln from the Viper East Demo Team at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., arrives at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. The demo team, assigned to the 20th Fighter Wing, will be performing in the Thunder Over Louisville airshow this weekend. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

An F-16 Fighting Falcon from the Viper East Demo Team at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., arrives at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. The demo team, assigned to the 20th Fighter Wing, will be performing in the Thunder Over Louisville airshow this weekend. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

Capt. Ryan Corrigan, a pilot with the 20th Fighter Wing at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., exits his F-16 Fighting Falcon at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base In Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. Captain Corrigan's  F-16 is part of the U.S. Air Force Viper East Demo Team that will be performing in this weekend's Thunder Over Louisville airshow. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

Capt. Ryan Corrigan, a pilot with the 20th Fighter Wing at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., exits his F-16 Fighting Falcon at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base In Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. Captain Corrigan's F-16 is part of the U.S. Air Force Viper East Demo Team that will be performing in this weekend's Thunder Over Louisville airshow. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

Two U.S. Air Force F-15 Strike Eagles fly over the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisviile, Ky., on April 15, 2010. The F-15s, assigned to the 4th Fighter Wing at Seymor Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., are part of the Strike Eagle Demo Team, which is in town for this weekend's Thunder Over Louisville. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

Two U.S. Air Force F-15 Strike Eagles fly over the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. The F-15s, assigned to the 4th Fighter Wing at Seymor Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., are part of the Strike Eagle Demo Team, which is in town for this weekend's Thunder Over Louisville. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

Maj. Gregory F. Craven, a U.S. Air Force pilot assigned to the 4th Fighter Wing at Seymor Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., taxies his F-15 Strike Eagle onto the flightline at the at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. Major Craven and his Strike Eagle Demo Team are in Louisville this weekend to participate in Thunder Over Louisville. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

Maj. Gregory F. Craven, a U.S. Air Force pilot assigned to the 4th Fighter Wing at Seymor Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., taxies his F-15 Strike Eagle onto the flightline at the at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., on April 15, 2010. Major Craven and his Strike Eagle Demo Team are in Louisville this weekend to participate in Thunder Over Louisville. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Maxwell A. Rechel)

KENTUCKY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Once again the Kentucky Air National Guard Base will be a flurry of activity this week as it plays host to a fleet of military aircraft taking part in this year's Thunder Over Louisville celebration.

A variety of aircraft, ranging from the venerable C-130 Hercules transport to the F-15 Strike Eagle, F-16 Fighting Falcon and F/A-18 Hornet began arriving here this morning in anticipation of thrilling crowds during Saturday's air show, which has grown to become one of the largest annual festivals in the nation.

"The Kentucky Air Guard is proud to play such an essential role in Thunder Over Louisville," said Col. Greg Nelson, commander of the 123rd Airlift Wing here.

"This is a wonderful showcase for the aviation community and a fantastic opportunity for us to show off the professionalism of our great officers and Airmen. We always look forward to Thunder, and this year's event promises to be first rate."