By Jeremy Wallace
TROY — Adults and children alike were entertained by juggling, comedy and ventriloquism.
The Kids Day at the Miami County Fair was held Monday. Along with many other events for children, there was a performance by Mike Hemmelgarn under the entertainment tent.
Hemmelgarn is a comedy juggler and ventriloquist. He performs at schools, corporate events and other types of venues each year around the state with a unique blend of entertainment. His shows also have magic and lots of audience participation.
“When I was young I seen a ventriloquist on TV and it caught my imagination. I have been doing this for 22 years and still enjoy performing,” Hemmelgarn said.
His performance encompassed different forms of entertainment. He used a stuffed squirrel and skunk in his act. These stuffed animals had springs in them which made the look like they were really moving.
“If you have a stuffed animal, bed spring and years of experience you can do exactly what I’m doing,” Hemmelgarn laughed.
A doll named Rosie was a prop he used in his ventriloquist act at the fair. Rosie is in her 90s, she likes to sing and talk to people in the audience. Rosie sung “You Are So Beautiful” to a man Hemmelgarn refereed to “G-Dawg” from the audience.
He lives in Springsboro with his four children and is employed by Wright Patt Air Force Base. Hemmelgarn wanted to be a regional entertainer because he did not want to be far away from his family and job.
“My job gives me a lot of flexibility to do performances,” Hemmelgarn said.
The final part of his act was juggling. He started out with juggling three juggling pins, then started juggling an apple, machete and bowling ball. If that wasn’t enough, he performed it with three bowling balls.
He concluded that part of his act with juggling a lit torch, a bowling ball and an apple. While performing his last feat with the three objects he took two bites out of the apple and didn’t drop any item he was juggling.
“I use ad lib’s and try to evolve my show so my act is fresh for each performance,” Hemmelgarn said.
Some of the sponsors for Kids Day was Main Source Bank, Bruns Reality, Kevin Mote Petroleum Distribution Inc., Miami Valley Steel Service, Piqua Materials Inc. and Bently, Stevens and Jones Dentistry.
For more information on Hemmelgarn, visit www.mikehemmelgarn.com or find him on Facebook at mikehemmelgarnentertainer.
Jeremy Wallace can be reached at 937-552-2199 or follow him on Twitter @TroyDailyNews