Juggling in the Park

Center City Park
I went to Center City Park again to juggle on Saturday from 5 to 6 pm. I don’t have a routine down well enough to call myself a performer, so I tell people that I’m practicing, which is the truth. Even so, a father and his son approached me and watched me juggle 3 clubs for a minute. The the father handed a dollar to the boy, who looked to be about 4 or 5 years old. The boy offered the dollar to me in his outstretched hand. I said, “No, no. I’m not doing this for money.” The boy turned around and looked at his dad and his dad gestured toward me again. I then accepted the dollar and thanked them profusely. It seems silly now, but at the time I said, “This is the first dollar I made from juggling. I’m going to have it framed.”

Later a group of three boys and a girl came by and watched me juggle. I asked if any of them knew how to juggle. I got out all of my balls and rings and let them practice, first with two props and then with three. The three boys, were able to flash 3 balls and on occasion make 5 or 6 catches. They said they might come back next Saturday to practice some more.

Update: I missed last Saturday and I feel terrible, but I had to work an extra shift at work. I’ll get back out there.

7 Replies to “Juggling in the Park”

  1. Juggling has to be the greatest gift you can give a complete stranger, its mad to think that experience may encourage one of those children to juggle for the rest of their lives :)

  2. I do some juggling as well. It would be great to get together in the park sometime to see what we could learn from one another. I haven’t been into it long, but I have a few neat tricks with 3 balls. I haven’t tried rings or clubs yet.

  3. On the topic of juggling being the greatest gift that you can give a complete stranger… If you haven’t yet explored the world of bounce juggling, I highly recommend it. Some inspiration can be had with these two videos from Greg Kennedy (who you might know, if you’ve attended the IJA conventions…)


    Adding yet another dimension to juggling – down as well as up – opens a whole new world of possibilities.


  4. I love Greg Kennedy’s stuff and Michael Moschen, who I learned was Penn Jillette’s original juggling partner.

    I also saw a video of one juggler doing bounce-like throws except instead of the balls hitting the floor they were caught and tossed by his partner sitting on the floor.

    I see that you are a sword swallower, mentalist, hypnotist. Do you ever perform in the southern US? I saw a sword swallower at the North Carolina State fair in 1987 and I’ll never forget it. 20 years ago I didn’t appreciate what I was seeing. Sword swallowers, fire eaters, acrobats, jugglers, etc are living, breathing supermen and superwomen. I like to think that they are the inspiration for the original comic book heroes.

  5. They were indeed juggling partners, and boy did they go ultimately go in different directions with their art! Both are still doing stunning work though.

    I’m glad that you remember having seen a sword swallower live from twenty years ago! Many people only see us on television or in print, and as you know, it’s a *much* different experience live. It’s something that sticks with you. ;)

    I do indeed perform in the South – I’m on the road constantly and perform all over – and chances are good that you can catch me in your area.

    Perhaps we can juggle when I’m in the area!

  6. If you are ever in North Carolina drop me a line. I’ll come see your show. I’d love to juggle, too. My skills are solidly in the beginner / amateur category and my general performance skills are almost non-existent. I know there are other jugglers and variety artists in the state, but they are hard to find. There is a restaurant / club that often has fire dancers, but I can’t afford to eat there :(

    The Bindlestiff Family Cirkus came to Greensboro and I saw Keith Nelson swallow a neon tube among other things. Very impressive. I’d be impressed to see somone swallow a nasogastric tube on stage, not as difficult or sexy as a sword, but still – how many people do you see doing that?


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