Pirates plan invasion with WW II planes Saturday

From the water to the sky, Tampa won't be able to escape this year's pirate invasion.

"I'll never get tired of seeing it. But it's so cool to see the kids and watch it through their eyes and just see the pure joy," said Shamus Warren, a pirate with Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla.

With an air show unlike years past, the Children's Gasparilla Parade will kick off with heart-stopping aerobatics performed thousands of feet in the air.

"It's a very good performer, very entertaining, it's fascinating to watch a piece of history being put through its paces," said Pilot Thorn Richard, who travels the U.S. performing stunts in his historic P-40 Warhawk.

This year's air invasion boasts a few very old planes that have quite the story behind them.

"Back in WWII this was a front-line fighter," said Richard. “It's most famous for flying in the Flying Tigers, saving China of course from the Japanese. This particular airplane served the New Guinea in the US Army Air Core, and it actually has two confirmed kills."

But from fighting to performing, this P-40 Warhawk has been re-purposed, ready to twist and turn its way into the Gasparilla festivities.

"You'll see the aircraft zooming in at about 350 miles per hour, and you'll see the diameter loop being well over 4,000 feet," said Richard.

Thursday, Warren got a chance to test out those twists and turns through the Tampa skies, giving it his pirate approval.

"To be able to be in a piece of history like that and actually take control and do loops and wing-overs, really there are no words, it's just fantastic," said Warren.

The air-invasion will take place at noon on Saturday. You can watch the coverage live on FOX 13.