Lt. Col. John Klatt dips his Extra 300L aerobatic plane into a roll while flying over the Puget Sound on Thursday, Aug. 3 in preparation for the annual Seafair show held this upcoming weekend around Seattle. Klatt will be performing stunts in both his Extra 300L and a jet powered biplane dubbed the “Screamin’ Sasquatch” under the Jack Link’s title name for the festival. (Ian Terry / The Herald)

Seafair preview: An aerobatic pilot’s view of Puget Sound

SEATTLE — With more than 15 years of stunt plane experience and three tours of duty in Iraq flying an F-16 fighter jet, newly retired Lt. Col. John Klatt is hardly fazed by a few twists and flips over Puget Sound.

Even so, Klatt and his Jack Link’s sponsored crew never pass up a chance to perform in the annual Seafair festival.

“We like coming here,” said Klatt, who lives near Minnesota’s Twin Cities when he isn’t traveling the country flying either his bright red Extra 300L or “Screamin’ Sasquatch” Jet Waco aerobatic planes.

On Thursday morning, despite hazy conditions from smoke caused by wildfires in British Columbia, Klatt took his Extra 300L for a loop around Golden Gardens and North Seattle.

Specially fitted with engines that perform regardless of their orientation to the ground, the stunt plane can twist into barrel rolls or soar up and into vertical flips with ease.

Seafair attendees will have a chance to see Klatt fly Friday through Sunday, along with the Blue Angels and other high-powered acts.

I-90 will be closed Friday through Sunday from 12:55 to 2:40 p.m. to accommodate the airshows.

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