Viper Demo Announcement

Get ready for an electrifying display of one of our nation’s most exciting and versatile fighter jets as the United States Air Force F16 Viper Demo Team, led by Captain Taylor Hiester, will headline the Let Freedom Fly International Airshow at Pierre Regional Airport this Memorial Day weekend, May 25-26th.

Captain Hiester, known by his callsign "FEMA," serves as the Commander and Pilot of the United States Air Force F16 Viper Demonstration Team, stationed at Shaw Air Force Base in Sumter, S.C. His connection to South Dakota runs deep, having served as a fighter pilot with the 114th Fighter Wing of the South Dakota Air National Guard Base in Sioux Falls. During his time there, he honed his skills as an instructor pilot specializing in alert operations and VIP protection.

The Viper Demo Team has a special mission this year, as they celebrate the 50th anniversary of the venerable F16 as a staple of the US Air Force’s arsenal.

"We are thrilled to welcome Captain Hiester and the United States Air Force F16 Viper Demo Team to Pierre for our Let Freedom Fly International Airshow," said Jim Peitz, airshow organizer. "FEMA and his team are coming to represent the amazing dedication and skills of the men and women in our armed forces, and we are honored to have him showcase the incredible agility and battle readiness of the F16 to the crowd. It’s really going to be a very special and spectacular weekend, and we hope everyone will come out to the airport and enjoy it from the flightline."

The Let Freedom Fly International Airshow promises to be a spectacular event for aviation enthusiasts of all ages. In addition to Captain Hiester and his team, fans will have the opportunity to witness dozens of civilian and military aircraft bring the thunder of freedom to the skies over Pierre with an awe-inspiring display of aerial demonstrations. Static displays featuring aircraft and ground equipment of all types and eras will be on hand for up-close inspection, and plenty of food and exciting ground exhibits will round out the incredible lineup for the show.

Tickets for the airshow are available exclusively online at, and a full list of Frequently Asked Questions and event guidelines are available there as well. For media inquiries, please contact Greg Gibson at

Don't miss out on this unforgettable experience! Join us at the Let Freedom Fly International Airshow for a weekend of thrilling aviation action and patriotic celebration.