An Afternoon In The Air

Nicole Lockwood stunt plane
Klatt showed off upside down maneuvers in the Extra 300 aircraft. (Photos by Joseph Catrone)

The widely attended annual Bethpage Air Show once again took place over Memorial Day Weekend, marked the true beginning of summer for many of Long Island’s eager beach-goers. On Saturday, May 27, and Sunday, May 28, onlookers were treated to awe-inspiring stunts and impressive aerial acrobatics performed by some of the world’s top pilots above the coast of Jones Beach State Park.

Lieutenant Colonel John Klatt, one of the world’s top aerobatic pilots flew his “Screamin’ Sasquatch” Jack Links Jet Waco aircraft as part of the show, and was able to give a couple of our editors a taste of the action beforehand.

Departing from Republic Airport in Farmingdale, Klatt maneuvered an Extra 300 aircraft toward the shore while initiating flips and twists along the way, often flying upside down for stretches of time. While the afternoon joyride was just a brief peek at what the weekend show had in store, it was enough to showcase the incredible skill that Klatt and his fellow pilots possess.

“It’s an honor to be able to fly in the air show,” said Klatt, who has been a participant for the past 10 years. “Over Memorial Day Weekend, it is important to honor all the people who served and those who have given the ultimate sacrifice. It’s important for us not to forget.”

For more information about the Bethpage Air Show including others who performed, visit www.bethpageairshow.com.

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Nicole Lockwood
Nicole Lockwood is the former editor of the Syosset Jericho Tribune and New Hyde Park Illustrated News.

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