66th Annual Homestead Championship Rodeo

C130moonWeb_2782 Members of the Black Demonstration Team jumped into the annual Homestead Rodeo on Sunday celebrating the 66th year for the Rodeo. Unfortunately on Saturday the brisk winds and low ceiling prevented the Gold Team jump into the rodeo, but fans cheered as the teams C31 Friendship circled high above the stands.linevanweb2714

There were hundreds of excited fans, Boy Scouts, vendors and of course beautiful Rodeo Queens enjoying the day’s events.  The US Army Recruiters booth was at the front gate, where the Golden Knights greeted the public and signed autographs  and the Marine Color Guard stood at attention as the National Anthem was sung by a local young lady.

The Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association Rodeo was held at the “Doc” Demilly Rodeo Arena at Tom Harris Field, which is the only one held in the Miami Dade County.

We are delighted to return to our winter training home and beautiful town of Homestead, which is the gateway to the Everglades and Biscayne National Parks.

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SSG David Echeverry fliesin his Florida home state flag

SSG David Echeverry fliesin his Florida home state flag

 

SFC Clark

SFC Clark

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SGT Downing

SGT Downing

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Signing autographs

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Black Team Leading into Week Two of ACC

IMG_8308-wThe Black Demonstration Team spent week two of our Annual Certification Cycle, completing 306 total stack out jumps, which allows the team to exit our aircraft at lower altitudes to practice our stack discipline and allows the team to accomplish more jumps throughout the day.

The team is progressing quickly with dialing in our accuracy scores to ensure precision landings at our air shows. Additionally, we incorporated both the packing and pulling down of our state flags, while under canopy during the first jump of the day. This has allowed our two newest team mates to learn the functionality of their flag line, while simultaneously working their way into the stack.

Each team member has an assigned tracking partner for our maneuvers, to include the “fan favorite”, canopy relative work ( where both partners work together to stack two canopies on top of each other.)

Our first jump on Wednesday and Thursday of this week was dedicated to canopy relative work progression and each demonstrator successfully accomplished this task. The team has their sights set on working our way up to the more advanced canopy relative work maneuvers such as the side-by-side and down-plane towards the end of winter training.

Next week the team begins with baton pass maneuvers and closes out this week with a demonstration into the Homestead Rodeo Sunday afternoon.

 

Blue Skies

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Black Team Soars Over South Africa

IMG_5230On September 12th the Black Demonstration Team departed Fort Bragg, NC to begin our travels to Pretoria, South Africa for the 2014 Air Show and Defence exhibition held on Waterkloof Airforce Base. With the support of our operations section, the US Embassy and the South African Golden Eagles Parachute Team, we arrived in South Africa on the 15th of September ready to support the air show and share the blue skies with members of the Golden Eagles Parachute Team.

Day one in South Africa was spent setting up and inspecting our gear, familiarization of the base, landing areas, and getting to know our newest friends of the sky, The Golden Eagles! We made two rehearsal jumps on Waterkloof Air Force Base where the team conducted one mass formation jump in addition to a modified full show that included a baton pass, diamond track, and a mini mass formation with a team member of the Golden Eagles Parachute Team Major Constant Benade setting the base.

We performed one stack-out jump above Waterkloof AFB on Sunday afternoon, after low ceiling (clouds) prevented us from jumping that morning. The stack-out performance also included a two-stack canopy relative work display by teammates SSG Chris Clark and gold team member SFC Brian Karst. The estimated 150,000 spectators came alive as our black and gold canopies gracefully landed along the crowd line, while Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the USA” played in the background.

The Black Demonstration Team extends a huge thank you to our friends and family of the Golden Eagles Parachute Team and members of the US Embassy for their hospitality and coordination during our stay in South Africa. We arrived on Fort Bragg Wednesday evening and quickly refit our gear and spent time with family prior to departing to Kansas City, MO in preparation for our Monday Night Football jump into the Kansas City versus the Seattle Seahawks game.

Blue Skies!  SSG Shelby Bixler    Photos By  SGT David Flynn

The Golden Eagles Parachute Team

The Golden Eagles Parachute Team

Black Team Litho Presentation

Black Team Litho Presentation

Black Team Ready to go!

Black Team Ready to go!

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