Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Presents First Under Water Sword Swallowing Attempt in US

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (May 16, 2007) – On Friday, May 18, world renown sword swallower Dan Meyer will face impossible odds as he attempts to swallow a 24 inch long, solid steel sword while submerged 15 feet below the surface in a tank filled with live sharks and stingrays at Ripley’s Aquarium in Myrtle Beach, S.C. – Believe It or Not!

 Ripley’s Aquarium in Myrtle Beach to Host Attempt at America’s First Underwater Sword Swallow – in a tank filled with Sharks and Stingrays

As executive director of the Sword Swallowers Assoc. International, Meyer is widely recognized as one of the foremost authorities in the world on the ancient art of sword swallowing. 

To stretch the boundaries of his art, Meyer will attempt to swallow a 24 inch long solid steel sword underwater while surrounded by 80 sharks and sting rays in 85,000 gallons of salt water.

There are obvious dangers in attempting a feat like this – sword swallowing can cause serious injury and even death. “Swallowing a solid steel sword is incredibly dangerous on dry land. Under water adds an entirely new dimension to it,” Meyer explains.

Under water, the dangers will be multiplied with additional challenges besides the obvious risks of cuts, punctures or perforations.  “It will be much more difficult to lean my head back and open my mouth when I’m 15 feet down and surrounded by 85,000 gallons of salt water.  When I open my mouth to swallow the sword, the air will rush upward out of my lungs, and of course, I won’t be able to breathe underwater.  Not only will I have to concentrate on swallowing the sword correctly, but I’ll have to contend with the sharks and stingrays while hoping they don’t swim into the sword while I have it down!” he explained.

If he is successful, Meyer will make history by being the first person in America to successfully swallow a sword under water. Ripley’s Believe It or Not! officials will be on hand to document the event for possible inclusion in a future Believe It or Not! book and in the popular and long-running cartoon series, still read daily in 200 newspapers in 42 countries!

 Editors note: This event will create incredible video and photographic images. Water will be bubbling up out of his throat while he swallows, sharks and rays will swim lazily by as Meyer takes the sword to the hilt, and the colorful image of rescue divers within arm’s length – all combine to provide a unique visual. See below for further information!)

 The general public and media are invited to witness this historic attempt. It will take place at 9 a.m. on Friday, May 18 at Ripley’s Aquarium at 1110 Celebrity Circle in Myrtle Beach.  The feat itself will be held in the attraction’s Ray Bay habitat, populated with more than 80 sharks and sting rays.  “We’re not taking any chances,” explained Peter MacIntyre, General Manager of Ripley’s Aquarium. “We will have trained divers in the water to watch over Dan, and an ambulance with trained EMTs will be standing by in case of emergency.”

 About Ripley Entertainment

Ripley Entertainment, Inc. (www.ripleys.com) is a leading global attractions company with annual attendance of more than 13 million guests. In addition to its 60-plus attractions, the Orlando-based company has publishing and broadcast divisions that oversee projects including the global syndicated Believe it or Not! television show, best selling books, and the popular syndicated comic strip. Ripley Entertainment is a Jim Pattison Company, the third-largest privately held company in Canada.

Attention Print Media:

High resolution photos of the sword swallowing event will be available immediately following the attempt on May 18. Please alert us immediately if you desire a photo. (Feel free to request video for your online edition).

Attention Broadcast Media:

The event will be available via a satellite feed. (Coordinates available on May 16, let us know and we’ll get them to you as soon as they are assigned).  If you prefer a B-roll package, please advise immediately.

Media Contact:

Tim O’Brien
VP  Communications
Ripley Entertainment Inc.
obrien@ripleys.com) 496-5949
(615

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