Aviation Heritage Park, Bowling Green

4.5
#3 of 6 in Museums in Bowling Green
A memorial to all distinguished aviators who have called South Central Kentucky home, Aviation Heritage Park currently features four restored military aircraft with very compelling ties to local aviators as well as their own interesting stories.

The premiere aircraft is a F-4D Phantom II 550, a plane with historic significance. Brigadier General Dan Cherry, a Bowling Green native, was at the controls on April 16, 1972 when he shot down a North Vietnamese Mig-21 during the Vietnam War. The second plane to join the display was a Grumman F9F-5 Panther. It is a representation of the plane Johnny Magda, Kentuckian, WKU alumnus, Commander of the Blue Angels and Korean War hero, flew.

Also on display is a Lockheed T-33 Shooting Star, dedicated on October 22, 2011. The plane honors Gen. Russ Dougherty, a Glasgow native who flew more than 70 types of aircraft and commanded the Strategic Air Command during the Cold War. The T-33 also bears the name of U.S. Air Force Capt. Robert E. Mitchell who was killed in the same type of plane during a training exercise in 1962.

The most recent addition landed in October 2013 and is a USAF F-111 honoring Bowling Green native Col. Arnie Franklin, who led the 1986 USAF raid on Libya. This particular plane was a part of that raid and was also the exact plane to drop the last bomb on the last night of the Desert Storm War.

Other planes are in the works, so check back often for updates. Tune in to FM Station 89.3 at the Park to hear more about the aircraft and their pilots!

Hours: Open daily from dawn to dusk.
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Aviation Heritage Park Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
157 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • Very small park with a few well maintained aircraft. Very well maintained, free, easy activity to kill a little time.  more »
  • We drove here for a quick stop after visiting the corvette museum, not really big, but cool to see. You just walk around and look at a few planes, but my son enjoyed it.  more »
Google
  • Nice display of military aircraft. What's so unique is the actual planes on display are flown by Kentuckians. The information plaques in front of the aircraft gives lots of information about each one. And you can give to the given am radio station for sone really good info also, and it's all free!
  • Really neat place. Really enjoyed getting an up close look at the planes.

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