Grand opening of Skywalk
After a detailed x-ray examination of the welding and the steel structure to assure safety of the platform it was time for the grand opening. In the cool morning of March 28, 2007 the opening ceremony began with the blessing of Hualapai’s spiritual leader. All members of the tribe were there. In the next two days David Jin, the person who gave the idea for Skywalk and representatives of the Hualapai nation welcomed special guests among which the astronaut Buzz Aldrin, who is the second man to step on the Moon and John Herrington – the first Native American astronaut.
For Wilfred Whatoname, Sr., Skywalk is only a part of the big source of pride and economical growth of the Hualapai Nation.
“It is an attempt to show to the public that there are other Indian tribes with different customs.” – Wilfred Whatoname, Sr
For his son Wilfred Whatoname, Jr., Skywalk is a symbol which has an uncertain meaning yet.
“I think we took the right decision. With Skywalk we set the foundation, not for us but for our children and grandchildren.” – Wilfred Whatoname, Jr.
They both agree there should be a balance between development and traditions. And Skywalk is the bright future in front of the future generation.
While Skywalk continues to attract visitors from all over the world, the Hualapai tribe aims at development of other parts of the Grand Canyon for tourism.