WWII Flying Fortress visits Bar Harbor airport, offers flights in historic bomber

Posted July 30, 2014, at 6:13 a.m.
Last modified July 30, 2014, at 4:30 p.m.

TRENTON, Maine — Around 20 airplane enthusiasts lined the fence at Scenic Flights of Acadia at the Hancock County-Bar Harbor Airport in Trenton to watch the return of a piece of American history.

With blue skies and calm winds, one of the last remaining airworthy WWII Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress bombers circled over the runway, giving spectators an amazing view of the warbird in flight. As the plane came in for its landing, it was greeted with cheers and claps, welcoming the Sentimental Journey back to Maine after nine years.

Adorned with a painting of actress Betty Grable on the nose, markings to remember the 457th Bomb Group, and .50-caliber machine guns the plane looked ready for battle. Though Sentimental Journey never saw battle it was continuously flown in WWII performing other tasks before being retired and later donated to the Arizona Wings in 1978. The private, nonprofit Commemorative Air Force restored the plane to full military specifications and began touring the flying museum around North America starting in the 1980s.

Now Mainers have a chance to see this piece of history up close. Sentimental Journey will be stationed at Scenic Flights of Acadia until Aug. 6. Flights start at $425.00 per person. For reservations, call 602-448-9415 or email b17rc@azcaf.org. Cockpit tours are only $5.00. Ground viewing and photo opportunities are free to the public from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.