SARASOTA, Fla. – Famed daredevil Nik Wallenda glided 500 feet across a wire suspended 200 feet above the ground on Tuesday, wowing several thousand people below in his hometown of Sarasota.
Without a tether or safety net, Wallenda was the lone figure against a blue sky, aided only by a balancing pole. He made the death-defying stunt look easy, but the performance was anything but simple: it took dozens of circus workers to pull and release the thick black cables that controlled Wallenda’s wire as he walked. The morning was windier than expected, and at one point near the end, Wallenda dipped down to one knee on the wire, which led to loud gasps among the crowd.
“I have to get into a zone where I kind of forget about everything else and just focus on what I’m doing,” he said shortly before he stepped on the wire. “Fear is a choice but danger is real, and that’s very, very true for my line of work.”
When Wallenda went to one knee, the drama reached a fever pitch.
“Scary,” said Neil Montford, a vacationer from the United Kingdom, while wiping sweat from his brow and looking skyward.
Wallenda, 34, wore a gold cross around his neck and prayed with his wife, children and parents prior to the walk.
“It’s my job, it’s my career, it’s my passion, it’s what I love to do,” he said.
The Sarasota City Commission allowed the stunt without a tether. Wallenda wore a tether for the first time last summer when he walked across Niagara Falls.
Wallenda is a seventh-generation high-wire artist and is part of the famous “Flying Wallendas” circus family. His great-grandfather, Karl Wallenda, fell during a performance in Puerto Rico and died.
Designer makes fashion statement
LOS ANGELES – That was no wardrobe malfunction – that was couture.
When Jennifer Lawrence ascended the stairs to accept her SAG Award Sunday night, a bit of skin showed through the skirt of her gown, leading to some speculation that it had ripped.
Dior Couture told The Associated Press that wasn’t so.
The design house said Lawrence’s gown was designed by Raf Simons “with different levels of tulle and satin.” That was what viewers saw on television when she lifted her gown to walk upstairs.
Kid Rock OK with howling over Harleys
MADISON, Wis. – Kid Rock says his new partnership with Harley-Davidson is a dream deal, and as the owner of multiple Harley bikes, he didn’t feel like he was compromising his integrity or risking a backlash from fans.
The Milwaukee-based motorcycle maker is sponsoring Kid Rock’s upcoming tour, named for his most recent release, “Rebel Soul.”
The partnership announced Monday also includes an exclusive line of limited-edition, cobranded “Rebel Soul” merchandise featuring a line from the song: “I can’t hear you over the rumble of my freedom.”
Kid Rock said Tuesday the deal “just makes sense” because Harley is “something I’ve used that I’ve loved for a long time before this deal came about.”
The tour begins Friday in Kansas City and will end Aug. 31 at Harley’s 110th anniversary celebration in Milwaukee.