HomeUpcomingMemphis Belle™ Exhibit May 2018

B-17F Memphis Belle™ to be placed on permanent display - May 17, 2018

One of the most recognizable symbols of World War II will once again report for duty exactly 75 years after its crew finished their last mission in the war against Nazi Germany on May 17, 1943. Plans call for the aircraft to be placed on permanent public display in the WWII Gallery of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on May 17, 2018.  The new exhibit surrounding the Memphis BelleTM will include interactive displays, rare archival film footage and many personal artifacts which have never been seen before by our visitors.

The famed B-17F Memphis Belle and its crew became iconic symbols of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany. The Memphis Belle was the first U.S. Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the United States after completing 25 combat missions over Europe during World War II. The USAAF chose the aircraft for a highly-publicized war bond tour from June-August 1943, and its crew was celebrated as national heroes. The aircraft and crew were also the subject of two widely-seen Hollywood movies (one in 1944 and another in 1990).

The three-day celebratory event (May 17-19, 2018) will include three B-17 Flying Fortresses, six P-51 Mustangs, and three WWII-era trainer aircraft on static display; a ribbon cutting ceremony for the Memphis Belle and Strategic Bombing Exhibits; more than 160 WWII military and home front reenactors; 30 vintage military and civilian vehicles; a Big Band Concert; book signings; and both Memphis Belle films featuring guest speakers in the Air Force Museum Theatre. Activities will be both inside and outside the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.

Click here for the Fact Sheet to learn more about the aircraft.

Watch live stream


Can't wait to see the new B-17F Memphis Belle exhibit in person?

Get a sneak-peak of the exhibit as it is unveiled during a
private event on May 16 at 6:30 p.m.

Click here to watch the live stream of the event.

Memphis Belle™ Photos

Indoor Events

The B-17F Memphis BelleTM will be placed on permanent public display on Thursday, May 17, 2018, with celebratory events on May 17-19, 2018.

WEDNESDAY, MAY 16

7 a.m.

 

Museum gate opens

9 a.m.-5 p.m.

 

Museum open

THURSDAY, MAY 17

8 a.m.

 

Museum gate opens

9 a.m.-6 p.m.

 

Museum open

9:15 a.m.
-9:30 a.m.*

 

B-17F Memphis Belle Exhibit ribbon cutting and public opening

6:30 p.m.

Living History Film Series event ($)

“Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress” (1944)

in the Air Force Museum Theatre (tickets required)

 

FRIDAY, MAY 18

8 a.m.

 

Museum gate opens

9 a.m.-5 p.m.

 

Museum open

SATURDAY, MAY 19

8 a.m.

 

Museum gate opens

9 a.m.-5 p.m.

 

Museum open

10:30 a.m.

-3:30 p.m.

 

Armed Forces Day Plane Talks throughout galleries

4:30 p.m.

Living History Film Series event ($)

“The Memphis Belle” (1990)

in the Air Force Museum Theatre (tickets required)



Other activities throughout three-day event


Education Programs

Education Programs will take place in the Reenactor Area, STEM Learning Nodes, and WWII Gallery.
(Interested schools and youth groups should contact the museum's Education Division at nationalmuseum.mut@us.af.mil or (937) 255-4652).

Outdoors in the "home front" area
-  Ration Book Scavenger Hunts for a prize
          (while supplies last)
-  Victory Garden Display

World War II Gallery
-  Memphis Belle themed trivia
-  Memphis Belle artifact and restoration station

STEM Learning Node in the Presidential Gallery
-  Wind Tunnel demonstrations
Build and fly balsa wood gliders
          (while supplies last)

STEM Learning Node in the Space Gallery
-  Interactive Educational STEM activities

STEM Learning Node in the Global Reach Gallery
-  Flight gaming systems

Scavenger Hunts available at
the Information Desk

Book Signings
Book signings will take place in the WWII Gallery
and the
Museum Store
“Memphis Belle:  Dispelling the Myths” Graham Simons and Harry Friedman
“Images of War” Graham Simons
“Shot Down” Steve Snyder
"My Father's War" Charley Valera


Food Options

The Valkyrie Café, located on the second floor above the Museum Store and the Refueling Café, located on the second floor of the Missile Gallery are open from 9 a.m. until one hour before closing.

Food Trucks are available in the parking lot near the reenactor area.

Food Trucks will be available on the runway on Thursday & Friday only.


Schedule is subject to change. Outdoor activities are weather dependent.
All activities are FREE unless otherwise noted ($).


*Time is approximate.
**Please note this is not an open fly-in. Wright Field is a closed runway and not open for general aviation use.

Parking Map

Special Thanks

Aircraft

B-17 Flying Fortress


Aluminum Overcast


Yankee Lady


Movie Memphis Belle (not landing)

P-51 Mustangs
Old Crow from Columbus, OH
Old Crow from Livonia, MI
Gentleman Jim from Livonia, MI
Ain't Misbehaven from Knoxville, TN (landing)
Swamp Fox from Concord, NC (flyover)
Lou IV from Mt. Pleasant, TX


WWII-era trainer aircraft
PT-19
from Middletown, OH (landing)
PT-22 from Rockford, IL
T-6 from Kokomo, IN


(Please note this is not an open fly-in. Wright Field is a closed runway and not open for general aviation use).


Bands

Air Force Band of Flight

Air Force Band of Mid-America

The Tom Daugherty Orchestra


Food Trucks

Pitabilities

Lilia's Outside Café

Force Support Squadron Food Truck

Dans Deli

Good Golly Miss Molly

A Cut Above


 

Individuals

Betsy Bashore

Chris Kern


Participating Organizations

Grimes Field Airport

 

Champaign Aviation Museum

 

The Friendly Invasion (UK)

 

Memphis Belle Memorial Association/
Lausanne Collegiate School Website Project

 
TourismOhio

Featured Artifacts

Each week we will be featuring pictures of artifacts that will be included in the Memphis Belle Exhibit and the new USAAF Strategic Bombing in Europe Exhibit.  Click here to view these artifacts.

Outdoor Events

The outdoor events will take place in two areas on the museum grounds. The WWII aircraft will be located on the runway behind the museum and the WWII Military Encampments, 1940s era "Home Front" reenactors, and Vintage Vehicles will be located near the WWII 8th Air Force Control Tower replica.

Aircraft Schedule
B-17s, P-51s, PT-22, PT-19, and T-6
on runway behind museum

WEDNESDAY, MAY 16

11 a.m.

Due to weather the aircraft will not land today, but will conduct a mass flyover.          

THURSDAY, MAY 17

11 a.m.- 

2 p.m.

WWII aircraft arrivals and static display

2:45 p.m. WWII aircraft take-off

FRIDAY, MAY 18

Throughout
the day

 WWII aircraft flyovers
(as weather permits)
(WWII aircraft unable to land
due to weather)

SATURDAY, MAY 19

Throughout

the day

WWII aircraft flyovers

 
Reenactor Schedule
WWII military reenactors and 1940s era “home front” reenactors, vintage military and civilian vehicles 

THURSDAY, MAY 17 & FRIDAY, MAY 18

9:30 a.m.

Reveille

8th AF Control Tower

 

10 a.m.

Meet the B-17

Runway behind museum

 

11 a.m.

Memphis Belle Ops Briefing

Nissen Hut

 

12 p.m.

U.S. Airborne in WWII

8th AF Control Tower

 

1 p.m.

Women in the U.S. Army in WWII

8th AF Control Tower

 

2 p.m.

Memphis Belle debrief

Nissen Hut

 

3 p.m.

Ready the Flight Crew

Runway behind museum

 

4 p.m.

Retreat

8th AF Control Tower

 

SATURDAY, MAY 19

9:30 a.m.

Reveille

8th AF Control Tower

 

10 a.m.

Memphis Belle Ops Briefing

Nissen Hut

 

11 a.m.

U.S. Airborne in WWII

8th AF Control Tower

 

1 p.m.

Women in the U.S. Army in WWII

8th AF Control Tower

 

2 p.m.

Memphis Belle Ops Briefing

Nissen Hut

 

3 p.m.

Memphis Belle debrief

Nissen Hut

 

4 p.m.

Retreat

8th AF Control Tower

 
Big Band Concert

FRIDAY, MAY 18,
6:00 p.m.-7:15 p.m.,  
Cancelled due to inclement weather.


Schedule is subject to change. Outdoor activities are weather dependent.
All activities are FREE unless otherwise noted ($).

*Time is approximate.
**Please note this is not an open fly-in. Wright Field is a closed runway and not open for general aviation use.

 

Share your pictures with us

Share your pictures with us on Social Media.
Tag us @AFMuseum
#MemphisBelle

Facebook Event Page

Click here to visit the Facebook page for this exciting event. Let us know if you are interested in going.

Map of Event Areas


(Click map to enlarge)

download a flyer

Download a flyer with event information.

-  Click here for an event flyer
     (8.5"x11")

-  Click here for a trifold brochure
     (8.5"x14" - double-sided)

Special Thanks

Vintage Vehicles

1940 Chevy Master Deluxe Town Sedan

1940 Packard 110 Club Coupe

1941 Chrysler Windsor 4 dr sedan Model C-28

1942 Packard Conv Coupe

1943 Ford GPW

1945 Jeep MB

38 Buick Special

42 Studebaker USG 6 x 6 set up as supply truck

44 Willys Jeep

49 Willys Jeep

Chevy Master Deluxe 39 4 pass coupe

Chevy Sp Deluxe 41

Diamond half trk 1943, or High Speed 1942,

Dodge 41 WC-31 w/ saginaw bomb trailer

follow me jeep

G-503, WC-54 ambulance 43,

WC 56 dodge 42 command car, 43 kdf82e VW

GMC DunkW 45

GPW Ford 42, WC-51 Dodge 45

GPW Ford Jeep with Trailer 44

GPW Jeep 42, G519 Bicycle

IH mil fire 44, Air Field Crash Chevy 42

M2 Halftrack 41

M-20 Armored car 42 Ford

Navy WC-21 41 Dogde

S 75 Staff car, Cadillac 42

WC-21 41 Navy

WC-21 42 Dodge / Willys MB 42 with M-100 trailer

WC25 Ddge command car

WC-3 41 Dodge

Willy MB Jeep 42

Willy MB Jeep 45

Willys Jeep 44

Willys MB 44

Willys MB Jeep 1945

Willys MB Jeep 91st BG 324 markings

WWII 6X6 truck

Reenactor Units

101 PRI/ 8th Air Force 91 BG- 28th Division

101st ABN, 502nd PIR, CO B

101st ABN, 502nd PIR, CO I

143rd Inf Mess Service CO

17th Signal Operations Battalion

1st Army Headquarters

1st WAC BN

29th Infantry Div- 29th Div (RS)

4th INF Div

502 Co I

502 PIR, CO B 101st Airborne

5th Ranger "D" Company

5th Rangers & 101st Ab

5th Rangers D Company

83/329 Intell & Recon

8th AAF or 9th AAF Airborne Troop Carrier Sq

Airmans Preservation Society

American Red Cross Military Welfare Service

APS or AZ ground crew

Army Ranger E Company

US Chaplain Corp

USAAF / Arizona Grd Crew

Warbirds Living Hist Grp

WWII Historical Reenactment Society

 

Where to stay

Accommodations could fill up fast as the date approaches, so if you plan to attend consider making your arrangements as soon as possible. This weekend will be a busy one in the Dayton area as Hamvention, the largest amateur radio convention in the world takes place beginning Friday, May 18. (Select the drop-down arrow in the boxes below for information on area lodging).

Memphis Belle™ Video Playlist

Security Notice

For security purposes, all visitors will be screened. Coolers, alcohol, weapons and bags larger than a backpack will not be permitted, and outside food or beverages may not be brought inside the museum. All bags are subject to search upon entry.

Note: The appearance of hyperlinks does not constitute endorsement by the National Museum of the USAF, the U.S. Air Force, or the Department of Defense, of the external website, or the information, products or services contained therein.


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