Sword Swallowers Wanted

A Ripley's event puts out the call for a rather unusual talent.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Sword Swallowers Day
    Sword swallowers will convene at Ripley's Believe It or Not Hollywood on Saturday, Feb. 23.

    Many performers and events tend to spring up around the Academy Awards, as satellites if you will, most related to movies or entertainment or acting.

    But the most curious and highly photographable of all Oscar week events isn't even related to the awards. And yet it happens on Oscar eve just steps from Dolby Theatre, at Ripley's Believe It or Not Hollywood.

    It's the annual swallowing of swords, which is a part of World Sword Swallowers Day, which tends to, as you might guess, gather a crowd. The quirky museum will once again invite a gathering of steel-supping professionals to keep alive a feat that goes back several centuries. And to make a few onlookers gasp in the process.

    World Sword Swallowers Day is on Saturday, Feb. 23. Things get rolling at 1:30 p.m. sharp. Yes, we said "sharp" there. Thanks for noticing.

    The group sword swallow happens at 2:23, to coincide with the date. The show is free.

    Also of note? The world's tallest sword swallowers'll be in the mix, doing his sword-swallowing thing.

    Now, here's the local angle: If you're a professional sword swallower, and want to participate, you can. (We've never typed that sentence before ever.) Give Andrea Silverman at Ripley's a ring. Phone: 323-466-6335. Surely there are some pros from up the hill, at the Magic Castle, who've practiced this boardwalkian art form for years?

    And surely there will be Oscar lookie-loos who wander over for the show. We like it when the Academy Award lead-up events get a little zany and quirky and have little to do with movies but everything to do with astounding, eye-popping performance.

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