Welcome to the Prairie Aviation Museum. We hope you enjoy the display and exhibits inside the museum and the aircraft in the Airpark. We have 9 aircraft and 2 helicopters on display. We also have one piston and three jet engines (J57, TF-30 and A-4) on display. At times, like the Open Cockpit Days, we display a Convair 880 simulator and other items we are restoring. Please stop by and join us for a visit, tour, or one of our Open Cockpit Days.
How is Prairie Aviation Museum associated
with the original Top Gun movie?
With the newly released Top Gun: Maverick, Prairie Aviation Museum has three planes associated with the original Top Gun movie.
We have the only F-14 Tomcat in static display in Illinois. This is the type of plane Tom Cruise flew in the movie.
Spoiler Alert: An F-14 Tomcat appears in the Top Gun Maverick!
How about Jester and Viper?
They flew a modified A4-Skyhawk. Our Board member, David Wilson, flew the A4M-Skyhawk in the Marines. He hosts the A4-Skyhawk during OCDs.
How about the MIG-28?
Hollywood took the tactical version of the T-38, the F-5, and called it a MIG-28 in the movie. The aircraft flown in the movie were actually Navy F-5’s used by Top Gun as adversary aircraft. They painted them black, stuck a red star on the side, and started rolling the cameras.
Our T-38 is an Air Force version. The T-38 was also used by NASA to train Space Shuttle pilots.