Kanye West and his family have spent a lot of the last year and a half in a rather unlikely place for super celebrities: Cody, Wyoming. What have they been up to?
Locals say they’re more or less fitting right in, as much as a celebrities of their caliber could, according to the New York Times. West frequents the local McDonald’s and the Cody Steakhouse. He and wife Kim Kardashian West shop at the stores on the town’s main street.
“There’s not an easier guy to talk to,” said Tony Stonehouse, who works at a local auto dealer and the Cody Steakhouse.
For the most part, locals are showing West and his family the hospitality they’d show any newcomer. Many defended West and Kardashian when a columnist for the Cody Enterprise worried they’d flood the town with “paparazzi, movie stars” and other Hollywood types.
One person wrote in a letter to the editor that the paper shouldn’t “make fun of a new family in our community,” adding that “we do not know the hearts of famous people or non-famous people moving to our town.”
He purchased about 11 acres of commercial property within the town’s limits, and has moved members of his “Yeezy” team into the area. He plans to build a warehouse on Road 2AB. It’s possible, partly because the cost is far lower than the famed mountain town of Jackson Hole.
“He’s doing things up there that would have taken another zero to do down here,” Matt Faupel, a Jackson Hole real estate broker, told the Times.
The Kardashian-West clan has run into trouble with some local authorities, though. West’s proposed 70,000-square-foot meditation amphitheater on his ranch was thwarted by state law protecting a local bird species.
They also got a warning from the Wyoming Game and Fish Department after posting a video riding behind pronghorn antelope on ATVs, which a spokesperson called a form of wildlife harassment.
West has reportedly been in close contact with local leaders to smooth out any issues, according to the Times. Staying on good terms is in the town’s interest too — Mayor Matt Hall hopes the Kardashian-Wests’ presence will boost the economy. [NYT] – Dennis Lynch