Thu December 8, 2011
Canada denies Wallenda request for tightrope walk
Last month on 'New York NOW,' we highlighted steps Niagara Falls has taken to try to revitalize its downtown, an area that has struggled economically for decades. This summer, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed off on allowing world-renowned daredevil Nik Wallenda to perform a tightrope walk over the falls, an event that would almost surely attract tens of thousands of people and potentially provide an economic boost to the area. On Wednesday, however, Canadian officials turned down Wallenda's request. The Niagara Falls Parks Commission notified the daredevil that they would not make an exception to their policy prohibiting stunts like this within the park. Western New York officials are still holding out hope, though, that the walk will happen.
'The decision to approve the Wallenda walk by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the New York State legislature did not come lightly,' said State Senator Mark Grisanti, who represents the Niagara Falls area. 'It's imperative that all parties involved perform their due diligence to ensure that this world-class event takes place in a safe manner that preserves the majesty of Niagara Falls.'
Legislators like Grisanti are encouraging Wallenda to take his case to Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty and Ontario Minister of Tourism and Culture Michael Chan. The New York legislature gave Wallenda until next summer to perform the walk here in New York.