Red Bull Flugtag Attracts Paul Wall (and 84,999 Other Spectators)
By Kristine Tofte,
12:59PM, Tue. Aug. 28, 2007
It seems without fail that "if you build it, they will come."
Build what? A homemade, human-powered flying craft that is. Who's coming? Oh, something like 85,000 people.
Aug. 25, 2007 marked a record-setting day for the Red Bull Flugtag USA. No, not the furthest flying distance, nor the best performance. It was the audience - 85,000 people showed up to watch the first U.S. Flugnächt, setting the highest attendance record since its inception in the States in 2003, and that number doesn't even include those watching from outside Auditorium Shores.
The humidity and heat didn't keep anyone away. The crowd was huge and every age group and walk of life was well represented. Even a few celebs showed: Ricardo Antonio Chavira from Desperate Housewives, Houston rapper and syrup sipper Paul Wall, Olympic gold medalist Amanda Beard, and Mayor Will Wynn.
Podium spots and People's Choice all went to Austin teams. Grinding off the 30-foot flight deck over Lady Bird Lake, Austin-based team Skate and Destroy took home the gold, and some handy pilot lessons. Superman's "Crip"tonite placed second and received skydiving lessons. Third place and paragliding lessons went to Billy Ocean's Flying Fish Taco. And the Congress Street Bats won the people's hearts and the People's Choice award with 16,000 text votes.