WANTAGH, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) —  After a year’s absence, the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach received a warm welcome back this weekend — with a near-record crowd Sunday.

As CBS 2’s Hazel Sanchez reported, an estimated 231,000 people packed the beach. Last year’s show was canceled because of the congressional sequestration deal.

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Bob Friedman staked out his seat for the show at 9:30 a.m. Sunday.

“We lost the show for last year, so people were really psyched to have it back after the sequester,” he said.

The air show wasn’t the only attraction at Jones Beach. Many people came to enjoy the warm, dry day — little ones playing in the sand and others lounging with loved ones.

It may not have been the summer scorcher some sunbathers had hoped for, but it was a start.

“We had to take advantage of it,” one woman told Sanchez. “The water is a little cold, but we still are going to go out. We’re going to get used to it and have a good time.”

“I like to play in the water,” said Blake Friedman, of Amityville. “And I love to dig in the sand.”

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“It was a long, cold winter, so everyone is anxious for a nice, warm summer,” Bob Friedman said. “And hopefully El Niño helps us.”

The Blue Angels were once again the main attraction at the air show.

FA-18 Hornets flew at incredible speeds and only inches apart from each other.

“I actually thought it was amazing. Probably one of the most beautiful things I’ve seen a plane do,” said one fan.

“A lot of the things they’re doing, people don’t realize it’s very dangerous, but they come out and do it for us and I for one appreciate it,” said another spectator.

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