This is a peak Michigan moment: seeing the mighty Air Force jets fly over the Mighty Mac.

On their way to Traverse City for a performance at the Cherry Festival, the United States Air Force Thunderbirds were given special permission to fly over the Mackinac Bridge. It wasn't exactly on the way, as they were coming from Dayton, Ohio, but it was worth the trip to see the powerful jests fly over this iconic Michigan landmark.

Samantha Wheeler caught the action and shared it on her Instagram:


View this post on Instagram

The awesome Air Force Thunderbirds were allowed to do a fly over of the Mackinac Bridge!!! So amazing to see!!

A post shared by Samantha Wheeler (@rswheeler03) on

Since 1953, four years before the Mackinac Bridge was opened, the Thunderbirds have been showcasing their skills and their aircraft at shows around the country. Their official mission statement reads:

The U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron, the Thunderbirds, performs precision aerial maneuvers demonstrating the capabilities of Air Force high performance aircraft to people throughout the world. The squadron exhibits the professional qualities the Air Force develops in the people who fly, maintain and support these aircraft.

Objectives of the squadron are:
- To support Air Force recruiting and retention programs
- To reinforce public confidence in the Air Force and to demonstrate to the public the professional competence of Air Force members
- To strengthen morale and esprit de corps among Air Force members
- To support Air Force community relations and people-to-people programs
- To represent the United States and its armed forces to foreign nations and to project international goodwill