Tag: spectators

    A courageous rescue is at the heart of the story of the wreck at the edge of Niagara Falls

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    From Canada.com:

    It was a hot August night and thousands of spectators were holding their breath as a young, wounded soldier shimmied out on a thick rope towards two men stranded in the raging Niagara River just above Horseshoe Falls.

    Large floodlights were quickly installed so everyone could watch the dangerous rescue attempt. William “Red” Hill, just back from the trenches of W.W. 1 where he had been shot, was being smacked by white water as he went hand-over-hand out to a run-away construction barge that – fortunately – ran aground before plunging over the precipice. Two Chicago construction workers onboard were practically paralyzed by fear and exhaustion.

    Today, 95 years later, the barge still sits there teasing the imaginations of millions of Niagara Falls visitors.

    Nik Wallenda successfully completes Niagara Falls highrope walk before spectators, television viewers

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    From the National Post:

    Emerging out of a cloud of mist, Nik Wallenda ran the last few steps to become the first man in more than a century to cross Niagara Falls on a high wire and singlehandedly bring the Wallenda name back into the public consciousness.

    Although the walk was mostly free of theatrics, thirty metres from the finish, he bent down on one knee. As spectators gasped, suspecting he had fallen, he raised a fist in triumph.

    The crowd chanted his name as he cleared the last few meters to a raised lift, moving past the lights, cranes and news vans of what had become a multi-million dollar operation. “Welcome to Canada, Nik!” screamed a spectator.

    Nik Wallenda prepares for stunt of a lifetime

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    Note: This is the BEST article I’ve read about the walk so far. It shares some nice details of how he will rig up the wire as well as other details of the performance.

    From the Sarasota Florida Herald-Tribune:

    To understand the enormity of Nik Wallenda’s planned high-wire walk across Niagara Falls this summer, it helps to look at another skywalking display the Sarasota native put on in his hometown two years ago.

    On that crisp, clear winter morning, the seventh-generation aerialist walked softly across 600 feet of steel cable from the Watergate condos to the Ritz-Carlton hotel. For 12 minutes, he wowed spectators 200 feet below and dared a national television audience to switch channels.

    But the trek over Horseshoe Falls — part of the Niagara River’s Ice Age formation separating the U.S. from Canada — will make that feat look like a piker’s errand.

    Wire-walk seen of more benefit to Falls, Ont.

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    From the Buffalo News:

    When Nik Wallenda walks a tightrope above Niagara Falls this summer, an unprecedented stream of spectators is expected to flock to the mighty cataracts.

    Many of them should carry a passport. Niagara Falls State Park may have a clear viewing area for only 20,000 visitors, according to initial estimates, while Canadian officials could welcome more than 100,000 people to their prime seat at the Horseshoe Falls.

    While state officials Monday pledged a “spectacular” show on the American side, others believe the estimates confirm that, for a number of reasons, Ontario stands to benefit most from the stunt.

    “It’s a good problem to have: too many people,” said Jim Diodati, the mayor of Niagara Falls, Ont. “It’s a problem we had before 9/11. We’re happy to have it again.”

    Wallenda makes high-wire walk case before Canada’s Niagara Parks panel

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    From the Buffalo News:

    After a lifetime of staring down death atop a high-wire, Nik Wallenda on Wednesday faced a different challenge: persuading Canadian officials to let him walk a wire across Niagara Falls.

    Unlike the high-wire acts that made his family famous, Wallenda won’t know for weeks whether this attempt was a success.

    Wallenda on Wednesday presented his wire-walking plan to Canada’s Niagara Parks Commission, which controls the area around the famous cataracts.

    “This isn’t a stunt to me,” Wallenda told the commission. “I’ve been doing this my whole life. This is life to me.”

    The event would draw between 60,000 and 125,000 spectators, depending on the weather, and infuse the economy with up to $20 million, said consultant Michael Harker.

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