Community Blog: The EDge

Taking a big leap for Idaho public schools?

A winning bidder has committed upwards of $1 million to take a leap at crossing the Snake River Canyon near Twin Falls — nearly four decades after Evel Knievel failed to make the jump.

'Big Ed' Beckley
‘Big Ed’ Beckley

The money will go to public schools, the Idaho Department of Lands said Friday.

The winning bidder is one “Big Ed” Beckley, a Texan who outbid four other suitors.

And here’s how the bid breaks down:

  • Beckley committed $943,000 in a so-called “bonus bid,” securing the rights to the event.
  • He will pay $25,000 a year for two years, to lease 1,147 acres on the north rim of the canyon, where a landing ramp would be installed.
  • Beckley agrees to pay the state a 3 percent cut of revenues from sponsorships TV and Internet broadcasts of the event.
  • Beckley will pay the state a 5 percent cut from all other event revenues.

All of these proceeds would go to K-12, the Department of Lands says.

As winning bidder, Beckley has exclusive rights to the launch and landing site for two years.

Kevin Richert is a reporter and blogger at Idaho Education News (idahoednews.org). Kevin is a former Statesman editorial page editor, with 27 year's experience in Idaho journalism.

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