Archive for Wednesday, August 3, 2005

Sizzlin’ series deemed succesful

August 3, 2005

As Brian Wendling performed his juggling act to an appreciative audience at the finale of this year's Sizzlin' Summer Program series, Darlene Dean already was juggling ideas in her mind about next summer's program.

The series, which brought various performers to the Lansing Activity Center on Thursday mornings throughout the summer, played to more than 1,100 children during its seven-week run, said Dean, librarian at Lansing Community Library, the series' sponsor. Wendling's juggling show a week ago was the final act in this year's series.

Dean said that while she hadn't had much input about this summer's series as a whole, the individual acts each had their own fans.

"After each event, I had many people - both parents and children - saying they loved this one and that one," Dean said. "I really don't remember getting anything other than good feedback about the acts."

This summer was the second year for the series. Dean said she booked the acts - ranging from musician "Bongo" Barry Bernstein to Salina yo-yo champion Brent Dillinger to juggler Wendling - based on shows she'd already seen and recommendations from the Northeast Kansas Library System.

"I thought we had good variety and great performers," Dean said.

The events drew 1,138 children - an average of 163 per week. Dean noted that swimming lessons, a music camp and family vacations took their toll on average attendance in the final weeks of the series.

As she did this year, Dean said next summer's program would be a mix of new acts and those that already have performed at past Sizzlin' Summers.

"We try not to bring the same ones every year," she explained. "For example, we had a few acts that were very popular last year, but we don't want it to get boring so we try to mix it up. We brought some of them back this year; we may bring the others back next year."

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