One of the best spots to enjoy the National Cherry Festival Air Show 2015 is from the deck of a boat on Grand Traverse Bay. During the National Cherry Festival Air Shows there are Airshow Water Security Zones—closed off areas—on Saturday, July 4th and Sunday, July 5th.

The southern portion of West Bay south of the airshow “box” will be completely closed off from northern West Bay. With the safety zone extending the entire width of West Bay, this means no transiting N to S in West Bay will be allowed once the “box” becomes active. If you plan to anchor your vessel here, get to southern West Bay early!

Last year’s expansion to the airshow “box” and restricted areas remain the same this year for spectator safety. The Federal Aviation Administration requires areas under an aerobatic box to be clear of all spectators. These restrictions protect the spectators and help eliminate distractions to the air show performers.

The restricted area will be marked by orange and white buoys and will be patrolled. The patrol vessels will begin to move boaters out of the area beginning at approximately 11:30 am and we anticipate the area to be closed to all vessels from 12:30 p.m. until about 3:30 p.m. each day. This restriction includes transiting vessels. If you intend to move north or south of the restricted area you must be in position before 12:30 p.m. and will not be able to return until after 3:30 p.m.

Please listen to “Notice to Mariner” broadcasts concerning the restrictions on channel 16. Patrol vessels from the U.S. Coast Guard Station Charlevoix, Department of Natural Resources and Environment, Grand Traverse County Sheriff Marine Patrol, Leelanau County Sheriff Marine Patrol, and Coast Guard Auxiliary Patrol and Power Squadron will enforce restricted areas.