Space Needle
2:41 pm
Wed May 9, 2012

Tucson man wins space trip in Space Needle contest (video)

Gregory Schneider of Tucson, Ariz., has won a trip to space in celebration of the Seattle Space Needle's 50th anniversary.

He beat out five finalists in Seattle this week for some final competitions. (Video of the event after the jump.)

The final challenge was a Wednesday morning race around the outer ring of the Space Needle roof. They were wearing a harness for safety reasons. The Space Needle is 605 feet tall and was constructed for the 1962 World's Fair.

The two final competitors walked the ring writing answers on their sleeves to questions and puzzles – such as word scrambles –pasted to the side of the Space Needle. Schneider defeated Sara Cook from Washington, D.C., by answering more questions correctly in the allotted timeframe.

Former astronaut Buzz Aldrin announced Schneider as the winner.

About 50,000 people entered the contest, then it was narrowed though videos posted online for public voting.

Here’s a down-and-dirty video of the event today: