Monday, April 02, 2007

Bello The Clown Reunited With Prized Mini-Bike In NYC

Bello Nock, the daredevil clown, was all smiles Sunday when he was reunited with his lost little bike.

The star of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus thanked Ricky Robinson, who found Bello's shiny foot-high, 6-inch-wide contraption Friday night outside a restaurant on Manhattan's West Side.

"Give me a hug. I need my bike. That is my bike. Thank you, buddy," Bello said, outside Madison Square Garden, where the circus was performing.

In exchange for returning the bike, Robinson, 54, will receive a $1,000 reward, a new bicycle donated by Toys R Us, and free tickets to Knicks games and the circus show named for Bello, "Bellobration."

The bitty bike was taken from a Manhattan street Friday. Bello and two fellow clowns had put on an impromptu show for a passing camera crew, when Bello rested his bike against a street sign and forgetfully walked away.

After reading about the lost bike and seeing a picture of it in a newspaper, Robinson showed up at Madison Square Garden Sunday morning with the bike.

"I didn't know what it was," said Robinson, a native of Bridgeport, Conn. "I didn't know how anybody rides it."

The orange-haired, Florida-born clown had said he couldn't replace his trademark bike, which was built in Mexico City and has been in his family of circus performers for a dozen years.

Without the bike, the man once named "America's Best Clown" by Time magazine would have had to adjust his show.

"I can't tell you how happy I am to have it back," he said. "I wonder how comfortable it would be as a pillow. I may have to sleep on the thing."

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press.

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