Scenes from the rehearsal for the Bethpage Air Show at...

Scenes from the rehearsal for the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach on Friday May 26, 2023. Credit: Alejandra Villa Loarca

Possible scattered showers and cloudy skies are unlikely to cancel the Bethpage Air Show this weekend at Jones Beach, but the National Weather Service is forecasting conditions that may call for packing a poncho and umbrella.

Forecasters said a front pushing into the area later this week will cause on-and-off showers on Saturday and Sunday for the 20th renewal of Long Island's Memorial Day weekend tradition. Forecasters said Sunday looks to be the sunniest with a high of 74, but showers could move in at night.

Dominic Ramunni, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Upton, said the forecast is not for a steady, continuous rain, but there is a 30% to 40% chance of precipitation.

“I wouldn't characterize it as a washout by any means, but certainly allowing for the chance of some rain at times,” Ramunni said. “Folks enjoying the air show probably want to pack that umbrella or poncho, just in case.”

In recent years, weather for the air show has been touch and go.

In 2022, the beach was fully evacuated due to severe weather mid-performance and shows were canceled the next day.

The previous year’s Saturday show was also canceled, as it was too dangerous for pilots to attempt breathtaking stunts in the heavy rain, high winds and poor visibility.

Ramunni said while it’s too soon to confirm anything, it looks like this weekend won’t be a repeat of those recent years. “We'll get a better feel for that here probably by Thursday or Friday,” he said.

It also won’t be the hottest Memorial Day weekend Long Island has seen. Saturday and Sunday will reach below-average temperatures in the low to mid-70s, dropping to the upper 50s at night.

The average temperature for Memorial Day weekend would be in the mid-70s, he said.

“I'm not expecting anything like the 2021 Air Show, which was I think was in the low 50s and rained the whole weekend,” Ramunni said. “Nothing like that is in the cards for this year.”

The 20th anniversary of the Bethpage Air Show will see the return of U.S. Navy Blue Angels for their 10th headliner performance. Also scheduled are the U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Team, the A-10C Thunderbolt II Demo Team, the U.S. Navy F-35C Demo Team the American Airpower Museum Warbirds and many others.

The Long Island tradition is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

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