Despite a forecast for showers, perfect weather kick-started two days of Wings Over Illawarra action at Illawarra Regional Airport on Saturday.
The air show's reputation as being an ideal family event continued to grow, with children of all ages accompanied by parents and grandparents.
By Saturday afternoon event organisers Mark and Kerry Bright, of Bright Events, were confident of smashing the 2018 attendance of 33,000 and possibly hitting their target of 40,000 by Sunday afternoon.
"Ticket sales and pre-sales have come in a tad over last year. We were concerned about the weather on Friday but it has turned out glorious. It is fantastic," Mr Bright said.
"It started with a flyover by the RAAF Roulettes with a couple of pyro explosions to help start things off."
Mrs Bright said it was wonderful to see the number of family groups attending and how relaxed everyone was on such a perfect autumn day.
"We want to turn this into the family day that everyone can enjoy," she said.
Kim D'Olier came down from Sydney with husband Stephen and children William, Emily and Thomas after her mother read about the air show on the web.
"We have come down for a day out and it is fantastic. The kids are really enjoying looking at all the planes and climbing onto many of the aircraft.
"They are having a great time. We will definitely come again and recommend it to others."
Philip Cross, of Sydney, has visited three times now and brought his son Jonathon and grandson Silas, 4, with him.
It is Silas's second show and he knows the names of many of the aircraft.
"It is every little boy's dream to see planes fly and we try and get here as often as we can," Mr Cross said.
"We love this show in particular. We are staying two nights in the region. So we are actually tourists as well as going to the air show."
Aerial performers were enjoying Illawarra's two-day airshow just as much as the visitors.
Red Bull air racer Matt Hall performed aerobatic displays both afternoons and said it was always awesome coming back.
"I love aviation and to be able to share it with the local community is fantastic," he said.
"The Brights do a world-class event here. It is super relaxing for me to be able to do my thing and let people enjoy it".
Pilot Jethro Nelson and owner Dave Warren travelled from Tasmania to showcase the only Jet Provost aircraft still flying in Australia.
The C-17 Globemaster was too big to land at Illawarra Regional Airport but was still able to impress thousands of onlookers with how maneuverable it was just metres from the ground.
Paul Bennett thrilled the crowd with his Wolf Pitts aerobatics display and was applauded by a large crowd when he landed and taxied in front of them.