MORNINGSIDE — The 2014 air show at Joint Base Andrews near Washington was canceled Thursday for the second straight year as leaders there dealt with a 45 percent cut in military community outreach funding that has killed some such events for good but breathed new life into others.
The winners are communities that are back on the schedules of the Navy Blue Angels or Air Force Thunderbirds after last year’s across-the-board federal budget cuts prompted the precision flight-demonstration teams to cancel most appearances.
In October, the Pentagon announced that the teams will fly again, but at fewer shows than in years past. For example, the Blue Angels will perform next year in Cleveland and Dayton, Ohio, after canceling those appearances last year, according to event organizers.
But the Blue Angels cut Indianapolis and the March Air Reserve Base near Riverside, Calif., from their 2014 schedule, prompting organizers to cancel those air shows — for good in Indianapolis.
The last Andrews air show, in 2012, featured the Thunderbirds at an event that drew about 200,000 spectators. Officials announced last year they were turning the free show into a biennial event, at a savings of $2.1 million per show.
The next show at Andrews had been planned for next May. The base commander, Air Force Col. Bill Knight, said Thursday that it was canceled in accordance with the Pentagon cut in community outreach funding, which is designed to save $104 million in 2014.
Knight said base officials are considering other types of outreach programs.