Local Teen Helps Slide To Guinness Record

14-year-old Daniel Baljeu of Gobles displays the special medal he received Saturday for riding down the Howlin' Wolf water slide 173 times.

A Van Buren County teenager has provided a big helping hand to a local Guinness World Record attempt.

On Saturday, 14-year-old Daniel Baljeu of Gobles received a special medal for riding the Howlin' Wolf water slide at the Great Wolf Lodge in Traverse City as part of the Guinness World Record attempt during the World's Largest Slide-A-Thon. Baljeu rode down the slide 173 times beginning at 6 p.m. Friday for a total of 9.83 miles.

The Great Wolf Lodge in Traverse City and 10 other Great Wolf locations across the United States and Canada worked together to try to break the Guinness World Record for "longest distance water sliding in 24 hours at multiple venues." Every slider who descends a designated slide at each property was counted toward breaking the record, which was set in Germany in 2007 with a total distance of 843 miles.

Donations also were collected and included proceeds from a silent auction and public slide rides to benefit the local Big Brothers Big Sisters chapter, Great Wolf Lodge's charity of choice. Great Wolf Lodge is matching the donations received up to $50,000.

There also was live music, games and contests during Saturday's event.