June 26, 2007

DonB! is all over the place!

Well, it's been a while since adding info to this blog, so here's what's been happening:

Woodcrest Church
On June 3rd, I presented two programs at Woodcrest Church in Eagan. It was my second time there, and once again, the programs went really well. I even met a couple that were on the cruise last May to Jamaica. What a small world we live in.

Plate Spinning
On the 9th, I went downtown Minneapolis, to the 12th floor of Macy's department store, and spun some plates. I was told it "was a big stage". When I arrived, it WAS big, but only from side to side. The depth, from front to back was only 4'. And, the front row of people, including the man that threw the party, was seated about 24" in front of me.

Usually when I do the spinning plates, I ask for a "buffer zone" of at least 12' from me to the front row of audience members (I don't want anyone getting broken plate in their forehead). In this case, I was given only 4', by moving the head table back 2 more feet. It was a good thing too, as one plate fell and landed on the bench in front of the stage.

The event was a party for about 200 people, and the party was Old Vaudeville themed. Hence, you'll see the picture of me with "Ed Sullivan", brought all the way in from Las Vegas.

I want to thank Loren Daniels, from Mannequin in Motion for inviting me, and Carol, at Moore Creative Talent for thinking of me for this event. It was fun!

California here I come...
On June 11th I flew out to Sacramento, California, for 3 shows. The first two were for Sunset Christian Center's 10th Year Anniversary of camps at Sky Mountain Christian Camp (about 2 hours away). It seems that of the performers they've utilized over the last 10 years, I was voted as one of their favorites. So, I was invited back for this event. Both shows went very well, and I met some great kids and staff while there. Because of the limited space at camp, I slept on the top bunk with some of the staff in a warm, tiny cabin. Some of us snored at night, some talked in their sleep, and someone rolled over and grabbed my leg during the night and made me jump. I didn't get a lot of sleep, but the camp experience was great. Plus, it is one of the most beautiful camps I have ever been to in my entire life. Miles back in the woods, on a steep hill, with a crystal clear (and cold) lake, it was very majestic and awe inspiring.

I want to thank Pastor Sean for the invite, Rob T for the initial contact, and Continental Airlines for not losing my luggage.

I forgot to mention something: This was the first time I have ever flown to a show on an airplane, complete with all of the unicycles. It was an experience, and I loved it.

I rode the Amtrak
After driving back to Sacramento, I then took the Amtrak to Hayward, Ca. On the ride, I looked out the window, and there in the distance stood about 6 huge battleships (see photo). I guess the Coast Guard uses them for training. Interesting.

On the 12th of June, I did a program for Creekside Community Church, the home church of one of my best circus friends, Nicole Portwood. Nicole, along with her gracious husband Rom, and their two kids Tim and Elizabeth, let me stay with them for two days and run around Castro Valley eating In & Out Burgers and ice cream (after all, June 12th was my birthday).

While there, I had the opportunity to go see Nicole do a library show. It was neat to see another 1984 Clown College graduate still performing after almost 20 years of lost contact.

I then flew back to Minnesota, arriving around midnight. I didn't get a whole lot of sleep on this trip, but I don't mind a bit. It was great times of ministry, great times of visiting friends, 2 smooth air flights, a train ride through northern California, a HUGE ice cream sundae on my birthday, and In & Our burgers "animal style" (with everything on it).
We all rode in a parade...
On the 23rd of June, our entire family rode unicycles in the Rogers, Minnesota, parade. Logan, a friend of ours from church also rode with us. We had a great time. As soon as I have the pictures from the parade, I will post them here.

I haven't been in this place since I was 4 years old
Then, that evening I did strolling entertainment for 6 hours at the Minneapolis Depot. It was a surprise birthday party for the owner, and 240 of his friends. It was State Fair themed, so I thought up the brilliant idea of trying to juggle while riding a mechanical bull. From the 3 pictures below, you can see that at first I did fine, but as the bull started spinning and bucking faster and faster, it became so difficult that I eventually just tipped over and fell off.

Back to Rogers, MN

On the 24th, I did a show for High Point Church (they are the reason we rode in the parade). It was an opportunity to share the Gospel with church members and anyone else that showed up after receiving a flyer from the parade. I know some community people showed up, because they told me so afterward. That's the goal of DonB! Ministries: get people into church to hear the Gospel.

That's it for now. But after looking at my calendar, I will have plenty to write about every week through September.

Stay tuned...

June 8, 2007

Praise for DonB! Show

On May 9th, I presented the "DonB! Variety Show", also referred to as the Professional Goofball Show, for Grace Chapel in Bagley, MN. The coordinator of the event, Cheryl Fultz, gave me some comments I'd like to share. Here is a summary:

"DonB! really loves what he is doing & he really loves his audience, enough to share with them the love of Jesus through a wonderful avenue of entertainment. This was great for an outreach program of any kind!
DonB! is wonderful to work with, and very entertaining. The whole audience enjoyed participating too! Very clear Gospel presentation, not just once but several times throughout the program."

Thank you Cheryl for your feedback and comments.

A Short Family Vacation

On June 4th, our family left for a short 4 day vacation to northern Minnesota. It was cut even shorter by constant rain and stormy weather on the 6th.

We took the trip, along with my parents and Debbie's parents, to Duluth. On the way up there, Deb's parent's boat trailer had a blow-out, and blew the tire right off of the trailer, taking the entire wheel bearing with it. We found the tire, with the bearing still in it in the ditch about 3 blocks back. Everything was calm until we started finding woodtick after woodtick on us. All in all, about 20 ticks, from only 3 minutes in the long grass.

On Tuesday we launched the boat into Duluth Harbor and rode around the harbor for a few hours. Duluth is a beautiful city, built on the side of a gorgeous hill. It also has the famous Duluth lift bridge.

We then headed to Tower, Minnesota, and camped there. On Wednesday we visited the International Wolf Center in Ely, Minnesota. It was very informative, and we had the opportunity to view some wolves up close through the glass.

Due to the rains, we strted back to Mora Wednesday afternoon. It was a short vacation, but a really fun one. And, it is one of the first vacations I've taken that wasn't a working vacation. All play this time.

Jim, Lynn, Don, Deanna, Debbie, Dale, Deanna, Dean

And now, back to work...

June 2, 2007

DonB! as Uncle Sam?

Last night I was asked to walk my stilts as Uncle Sam for the NAFSA International Conference Closing Ceremonies here in Minneapolis. Being 9 feet tall, I had many people asking for photos with them.

NAFSA is the International Association of Educators. Their 60th annual conference will take place in Washington DC next year, so the theme for the closing party this year was "Washington DC". Uncle Sam is a political figure, without being particularly political I guess.

It was a fun evening of meet & greet, with people from all over the world. I met folks from The Netherlands, Germany, France, Australia, the Ukraine, The United Kingdom, and of course a few from the United States.