Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Orchard Street Pump house educates jugglers in quirky hobby

July 25, 2014

From 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday afternoons, local jugglers hold free juggling lessons for the public at the Pump House.

Juggler and East Lansing resident Mike Marhanka said he and other jugglers are independent, but all show up on Sunday afternoons at the Pump House for the lessons.

The Pump House is Orchard Street’s own community center. It is home to concerts, exercise classes and other social gatherings.

In 1934, the Pump House was built to pump water and house the chemicals that were added to the water system to produce clean drinking water.

When the Pump House went out of use, it was converted to and now serves as a gathering place for a variety of activities — such as Sunday afternoon juggling.

Marhanka said he learned to juggle in 1995 and juggling classes began at the Pump House around 1997.

He added one of his favorite parts about juggling is the ability to juggle clubs back and forth with another juggler.

Passing would be my favorite form of juggling,” Marhanka said. “Passing is what jugglers do once they’ve mastered things a little bit. It makes it more social.”

Prior to coming to the lesson, Daytona Beach resident Domenic Barsotti said he did not know how to juggle.

Barsotti said he was in town for business and decided to stop by the Pump House to learn the new skill.

After spending an hour and a half practicing the trick, Barsotti said he thought he had the hang of it.

Marhanka said he enjoys passing the skill on to others because he feels it is one people will always carry.

“We very gladly teach people how to juggle, it’s a skill that will stay with you forever,” Marhanka said.

Juggler and Lansing resident Brandon Vasos said being a juggling teacher is an enjoyable activity.

“I think it’s really just a matter of desiring to learn how to juggle — anyone can do it,” Vasos said.

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