From catapulting flaming soldiers over castle walls to sitting on active geysers, humans have long been fixated on flying through the air. Absorb airborne wonderment with today’s Groupon: for $7, you get admission for two to the Southern Museum of Flight (up to a $14 value). Active military personnel and their family members, as well as children under three, receive free admission.
The Southern Museum of Flight plays host to a number of civilian, military, and experimental aircraft and memorabilia dating back to the humble beginnings of powered flight. Scope out more than 75 aircraft, including Korean War jets, Vietnam War helicopters, and a Lilliputian War bumbershoot. Exhibit highlights include a diorama homage to Alabama's renowned Tuskegee airmen, as well as a B-25 bomber recovered from the depths of Lake Murray in South Carolina, the retrieval of which was featured on the History Channel. Spend some time gawking at the squawking A-12 Blackbird—flown by the CIA in the 1960s, it is one of the fastest, highest-flying manned winged aircraft in the world. Visitors can also take a gander at engines, models, artifacts, photographs, and paintings or experience aviation firsthand with a flight simulator powered by happy thoughts.
Adjacent to the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport, the museum covers 68,000 square feet of navigable space, including a state-of-the-art theater that plays historical films. Junior cadets will find amusement in the little pilot's playroom, stocked with a moonwalk, Legos, and Earth-orbiting rocket rides.
Museum is closed Sundays and Mondays.
Southern Museum of Flight
The sleek, dark body of the A-12 Blackbird is invisible to radar detection, but that doesn’t stop it from attracting the attention of every visitor to the Southern Museum of Flight in sight. The retired bomber is just one of the aircrafts in the Southern Museum of Flight’s outdoor collection, and it gives visitors a glimpse of what’s to come. Stepping inside, you can almost hear the purring engines from the Korean War jet or 1920s Huff-Daland crop duster.
Not only does the museum bring high-flown feats of engineering artistry down to earth, it sets its impressive collection of airplanes into realistic dioramas. The exhibits, designed to give life to the history of southern aviation, sprawl across 75,000 square feet and includes photographs, models, original engines, and the tiny gnomes that power them. The Korean War Jets exhibit, for example, uses mannequins and a surprisingly realistic mock-up of Kimpo Air Force Base to tell the story of No Kum Sok, a North Korean lieutenant in the Air Force who defected.
4343 73rd St. N
Birmingham, Alabama 35206Get Directions