The United States Marine Corps' AV-8B Harrier defies all logic. Is it a jet? Is it a helicopter? In truth, it's a bit of both. The aircraft and all 22,000 of its pounds can take off vertically and hover in one place?but once it moves, the harrier blasts forward at near-supersonic speeds, making it almost fast enough to outrun the chorus of "Danger Zone."
That impressive display of aeronautical engineering is just one of the attractions at the OC Air Show, including the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, which soar through the sky in complex formations while the U.S. Navy Seals Leap Frogs leave the aircraft entirely and parachute down through the sky. Pilot Greg Connell turns flight into dance within the cockpit of his Pitts Model 12?an aerobatic biplane perfect for executing loops.
While there's no charge for looking towards the clouds, the OC Air Show does offer some premium viewing areas. The Drop Zone adds food and drink, professional narration of the show, and sight-lines right into the center of the action. Sixty-four lucky people also get to watch from a raised VIP Skybox, while even more can go right out onto the water to see fish peek out from the surface, longing for the day they'll learn to fly.
A block away from the original Lazy Lizard, de Lazy Lizard Brew Pub fills glasses with 20 draft microbrews, including four beers brewed in-house. Guests can pair their pints with gastropub fare such as bangers and mash or paninis as they sup in a separate dining area or at the spacious bar. 11 TV screens scattered throughout the space keep sports fans entertained as they steal sips from a 100-oz. beer tower or lob Old Bay chicken wings at the opposing team.
Lightship Overfalls, a floating-lighthouse ship built in 1938, recently earned designation as a National Historic Landmark. During the last 11 years, the Overfalls Foundation has restored the once-ailing ship, repairing its now-cheerful red hull and completely reworking its electrical system to accommodate an underwater drive-in theater for dolphins. The Overfalls Foundation continues to maintain the ship with the aid of hardworking volunteers and member support. Membership grants holders a 10% discount off select items from the Overfalls Ship's Store, such as clothes, books, and collectibles, as well as exclusive access to email announcements about news, meetings, social gatherings, and other events hosted by the Overfalls Foundation. Trained ship guides lead complimentary tours above and below the decks, allowing guests to discuss the difficulties of life before Dramamine and explore a vessel that played an important role in maritime history. The Overfalls Foundation also welcomes volunteers to assist with ongoing ship maintenance, development, and social projects.
With practice areas for all facets of the game and 18 relatively straightforward, par 3 holes, Midway Par 3 & Driving Range affords novice duffers an ideal haunt for honing burgeoning golf talent. The course’s modest tee-to-green distances range 65–150 yards, making the links surmountable for future aces yet to develop the club-flailing muscle needed to deliver long drives and convincing strongman impressions. Patrons making their divot-tearing debuts will appreciate the course’s exclusion of meddling water hazards and sand traps, as well as the complex’s 30-stall driving range and practice areas reserved for chipping, putting, and celebratory tee-punting. A large basket contains 105 range balls that gladly submit to your orb-obliterating demands, granting greens-loving guests a comprehensive tune-up session before taking to the real course, which typically takes two hours to traverse.
Marty Godwin serves a resume that rallies 30 years of tennis teaching experience and a host of celebrity clients. Marty teaches the adult clinic and workouts, which are scheduled for 12–20 people and designed for players between a 2.5 and 4.0 level, figures that correspond to decibels achieved by players' service grunts. By combining proper swing technique and fundamentals with fun games that highlight strategy and court positioning, Marty spares five minutes for a symposium on Elizabethan tennis trash talking.
The Toyota Challenge, aided in part by the Utah Sports Commission, unites extreme athletes from the adrenaline-flooded worlds of BMX, skateboarding, and freestyle motocross for a competitive spectacle of varying heights and Matrix-like hang times. Friday's schedule includes skate vert prelims, BMX vert finals, and an evening concert featuring Neon Trees. Saturday's show has skate-park finals, BMX dirt finals, and FMX; Sunday showcases skate vert finals. Two-time gold medalist Shaun White will get gnarly on the vert ramp, and attendees may see teen BMX-phenom Brett "Maddog" Banasiewicz live up to his name by revving his pedals and scaring nearby dogs into a futile rage––perhaps followed by skateboarding superstar Ryan Sheckler soothing said dogs out of sicking with the tranquil twirls of a few front-foot impossibles.