Improvements continue at Air Power Park in Hampton, Virginia. The F-100 Super Sabre was hoisted and moved last week to a temporary platform while its new, elevated concrete platform is readied. The move is part of Phase III of the City’s nearly $2 million renovation of the park, partly funded by a Defense Department, Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation grant.
In 2018, the city embarked on a project to rejuvenate the city’s iconic Air Power Park over five to six years. Aircraft restoration was completed in 2019. In 2020, a drainage plan was developed and the park entrance was improved. Remounting of all the aircraft at Air Power Park is expected to be completed by July.
Air Power Park was established in October, 1963 (as Aerospace Park) to be a tribute to Hampton’s Air and Space heritage and honoring the men and women of Langley Air Force Base and NASA Langley Research Center who crafted this heritage. In the decades since, the park has continued to offer a unique opportunity to show case numerous aircraft, spacecraft, and missiles that represent past and present accomplishments of Langley AFB and NASA Langley Research Center. Today, thousands of visitors enjoy and learn from the exhibits each year. The work accomplished with this grant’s funding will ensure its future and the continuation of the revitalization begun two years ago.
F-100D Super Sabre (54-2145) on display was built by North American Rockwell in Inglewood, California, and was delivered to the USAF on April 27, 1956. Active until March 1972, it served with several units at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, two units at Luke Air Force Base in Arizona, and with Air National Guard units in Toledo, Ohio. During its operational life it was twice modified, first in April 1958 when it changed to JF-100 standards and again in October 1967 when it was modified to the F-100D configuration. The aircraft is painted in the special red, white, and blue markings of the USAF Air Demonstration Team.
The free, 15-acre park features several vintage aircraft and experimental space launch vehicles from the 1950s and 1960s, including jets, missiles, and rockets. Many of the displays have connections with nearby Langley Air Force Base and NASA Langley Research Center. The 1960s geodesic dome at the center of the park includes themed rooms with more than 325 models of aircraft, spacecraft, and nautical vessels representing all the U.S. branches of service and some other nations.
Air Power Park is located at 413 W Mercury Blvd., Hampton. Outdoor displays of restored aircraft and spacecraft open daily sunrise to sunset. Indoor display hours: Monday-Sunday, 9 am-3 pm. For more information call 757-726-0650.