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Air show to feature Virtual Army Experience

Release Number: 030310

Guests at Sheppard's 2009 Open House and Air Show take the opportunity to see the world through Soldiers' Oct. 11 with the Virtual Army Experience. The virtual reality simulation allowed people to go through briefings and conduct virtual missions. (U.S. Air Force photo/Harry Tonemah)

Guests at the Maxwell Open House and Air Show on March 27 and 28 will have the opportunity to see the world through Soldiers eyes with the Virtual Army Experience. The virtual reality simulation allows people to go through briefings and conduct virtual missions. (U.S. Air Force photo/Harry Tonemah)


Attendees to the Maxwell Open House and Air Show on March 27 and 28 will have the opportunity to lace up their boots and take part in a virtual mission as Soldiers in the United States Army at the Virtual Army Experience.

The high-tech, team-based mission challenges participants, 13 years and older, to employ teamwork, rules of engagement, leadership and state-of-the-art military technology to successfully complete their mission. The experience, where participants can also play the America's Army PC game against real soldiers, is open to air show attendees.

The VAE provides participants with clear insight into today's high-tech Army and immerses them in the operational roles of Soldiers. During the 25-minute experience, participants receive a comprehensive mission briefing to prepare them for entering the virtual mission simulator. Participants then fall-in on HMMWV simulators, modeled on the actual vehicles employed by Army Special Forces. Other participants load a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter, where they employ light arms and provide air coverage support against enemy forces rendered by the America's Army game. Upon mission completion, participants receive a debriefing on their performance. 

The VAE will be accompanied by Basic Training Drill Sergeants, who will give participants waiting in line a "hands on" glimpse of Basic Training. Drill Sergeants will conduct team-building events designed to motivate VAE participants and enhance self-esteem. More importantly, they will stress the benefits of education and discuss the importance of setting and reaching goals.

Visitors will also have the chance to meet a heroic Soldier featured in the America's Army Real Heroes program. The America's Army Real Heroes program tells the stories of Soldiers who have earned citations for bravery and valor. America's Army Real Hero, Sgt. Jason Mike, who received a Silver Star for his role in Operation Iraqi Freedom will be onsite.

Gates to the Maxwell Open House and Air Show open at 8:30 a.m. on both show days. Guests are highly encouraged to carpool and use the shuttle services available at Cramton Bowl, Paterson Field and the Robert Trent Jones golf trail in Prattville.

For more information on the air show, visit http://airshow.maxwell.af.mil.