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County fair continues to entertain

Published: Friday, July 4, 2014 9:08 p.m. CDT
(Heidi Litchfield –
Pocket Circus performer Juan Friguglietti teaches children from the audience how to spin a plate on a stick during his show Thursday evening.
(Heidi Litchfield –
Magic Matt holds his magic rings in front of Junior Miss Grundy County Sophia Shaw during his show Thursday evening.
(Heidi Litchfield –
Olivia Terry takes a break from the magic show to feed the goats in the petting zoo next to the stage on Thursday evening.

MORRIS – For more than 20 years Juan Friguglietti has been honing his juggling and plate spinning skills to put on the world’s smallest circus – the Pocket Circus.

He brought his circus to Morris for the Grundy County Fair this week and will be pulling items from his suitcase of tricks to entertain those who attend his free show.

“I’m just a one-man show, who juggles and performs,” Friguglietti said. “I have a message that if you try something, and practice a lot, you can get it.”

He brings audience members on stage to participate in his interactive show, which is filled with music and laughs.

He said no two shows are the same and he customizes them based on the audience present.

Reganne Patrick, 12, was picked Thursday to go on stage to learn one of his tricks, balancing a spinning plate on a stick.

“It wasn’t really hard,” Reganne said. “It was fun though.”

Other audience members participated from their seats, tossing in balls as he called out their number.

Friguglietti learned his art in Argentina before moving to the United States 13 years ago.

On a stage facing the tiny circus, magician and balloon artist Matthew Scherer entertained the crowd gathered for Magic Matt’s Family Fun Show.

Scherer has been performing at the fair for more than 10 years and said he is excited to come back each year.

“This is one of the first fairs of the season, and it’s close to home,” he said. “Everyone here is just out to laugh and have fun.”

Kids are invited on stage where they become part of the show, wearing funny hats that expand changing color each time they are unfolded until the face of a green monster covers the face of the unsuspecting child wearing it.

But no magic show would be complete without the art of illusion, which Scherer pulls off using a set of five silver rings that link together and come apart with the twist of the hand much to the audiences amazement.

“I don’t know how he does it,” Anna Johnson said. “It has to be something with his fingers.”

The wonder is part of the magic he performs.

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