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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Table hoppers & party strollers » » Advice for busy kids night (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

MikeRaffone
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Anyone work a very busy restaurant where there is not enough time to get to everyone?
I spend about 3 minutes per table and stay mostly with routines that are instant reset. The restaurant wants me to do balloon animals too, but when I stop and do that, kids swarm around me and I end up falling behind.

Thanks,
Mike
Mike Perrello
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magicmanci15
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Reccommend to work longer, get paid more, or just accept the fact that your never, ever gonna get to everyone.

Ivan
MAGICBYTIM
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I had this problem. The restaurant I work at went from about 40-60 guest on a Tuesday night to over 200 guest. I could not come close to hitting all the tables with kids. Parents were waiting 30 minutes for me to get there and I could only do one trick and balloons. The restaurant started getting complaints. We sat down and discussed options. I tried to get them to let me stop doing balloons but they insisted on keeping them. Then I tried to combine tables as best as I could and it still did not work. I am booked for 3 hours. I finally told them that their only option was to hire a second magician. That is what they decided to go with and there has been two of us there for over two years.

I can not really give you any other advice since my solutions did not work.

Tim
Magic_Steve
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Quote:
On 2007-03-02 15:24, magicmanci15 wrote:
Reccommend to work longer, get paid more, or just accept the fact that your never, ever gonna get to everyone.

Ivan


Plain and simple. In my opinion, this is good advice. Also, hiring another magician could work, if they don't take over your job! Smile

Best,
Steve
Motor City
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Once the balloons come out, getting to other tables becomes very difficult. Looks like you handled it the only way you could.
MAGICBYTIM
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I have never had a problem with the balloons. I carry a floor pump with me and make the balloons after I perform magic. The working longer hours may not work. The reason I say this is that most people come in and eat between 5:30 and 8:30. I work 6 to 9 and that has worked out well but if I worked 5 to 10 I would be standing around doing nothing for part of the time.

I would only make the balloons at the kids table. If the kids come up to you while making balloons tell them that you will make them a balloon when you get to their table.

I also have the arrangement with the other magician that I hired him and I pay him. The restaurant pays me and I pay him. This is more work on my part but it keeps me as the main contact for the restaurant. In fact the restaurant does not have his contact information as far as I know.

This has worked for me but may not work everywhere, but this is a good problem to have.
MagicSanta
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I would get a balloon guy rather than another magician. Have him follow you to tables. You do magic then leave and he does balloons. That way the kids are tied up and not following you.
RicHeka
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Quote:
On 2007-03-02 21:01, MagicSanta wrote:
I would get a balloon guy rather than another magician. Have him follow you to tables. You do magic then leave and he does balloons. That way the kids are tied up and not following you.


Tying up kid's will get you into even more trouble than a mis-performed fire effect.

Sorry Santa I couldn't resist. Smile

Rich
RicHeka
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Quote:
On 2007-03-02 20:47, MAGICBYTIM wrote:
I have never had a problem with the balloons. I carry a floor pump with me and make the balloons after I perform magic. The working longer hours may not work. The reason I say this is that most people come in and eat between 5:30 and 8:30. I work 6 to 9 and that has worked out well but if I worked 5 to 10 I would be standing around doing nothing for part of the time.

I would only make the balloons at the kids table. If the kids come up to you while making balloons tell them that you will make them a balloon when you get to their table.

I also have the arrangement with the other magician that I hired him and I pay him. The restaurant pays me and I pay him. This is more work on my part but it keeps me as the main contact for the restaurant. In fact the restaurant does not have his contact information as far as I know.

This has worked for me but may not work everywhere, but this is a good problem to have.


Tim:I agree with your post wholeheartedly.
It is a good idea to make it clear to the back-up performer to hand out YOUR card,when guest's request a biz card....and if it is something you can't do you will pass it on to him.It is your gig!Also,make certain the restaurant understands this.

I only mention this because I had a similar set-up and learned the hard way.

***Oh,wait I don't agree with everything...FLOOR PUMP??? Please tell me you are not serious.Damn..might as well haul around an intravenous unit

Best.
Rich
Eddie Torres
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The restaurant I'm at has two magicians working on the weekends, granted we don't do balloons but it can still get pretty busy, that may be a way to go. The other way to go is to have the balloons pre-made, yes it takes most of the fun out of it but all the kids would get balloons, the table would have their magic, no other magicians get involved, and everyone goes away happy. Or... You can make one balloon animal and then have the others premade. Something like "so this is how you make a poodle, here you go, this is for you and I've got more for the rest of you, right here" as you go into your bag o' balloons. Hope that works for ya!

~Eddie
Eddie Ivan Torres
MikeRaffone
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Thanks for the quick responses.
Just for the record, the restaurant pays very well, which is why I want to make this work.

As some suggested, I would like to try incorporating the balloon sculpting in with the visits to each table to spread the joy more equally.

This brings up another question...

How do you carry the bulk of balloons and pump around and maintain a professional look? One idea I had was to use Q160 balloons which also uses a small pump that fits perfectly in my inner jacket pocket. Would I have to learn new sculptures or can the same 260 sculptures be used with 160s?

Thanks,
Mike
Mike Perrello
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MAGICBYTIM
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When I first started my restaurant I would leave the pump over in the corner. Then I would perform the magic and ask the kids what kind of balloon they wanted. Then I would walk over to the pump and blow the balloons up and take them back to the table. At the table I would make the balloon. I did this until the restaurant wanted me to blow the balloon up at the table and kind of show the kids how I make the balloon. It was also taking a little more time to walk over to the pump and back to the table.

It is also easier to tell what tables you have been to since you make the balloons at the end of the set. This means that any table with balloons has already seen you.

I wanted to try and just have a balloon guy that would make balloons and I would do the magic, but the restaurant wanted one person in each of their two large dinning rooms. That meant I had to get a magician.


Rich, thanks for the idea. "***Oh,wait I don't agree with everything...FLOOR PUMP??? Please tell me you are not serious.Damn..might as well haul around an intravenous unit
"
Josh Chaikin
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Quote:
How do you carry the bulk of balloons and pump around and maintain a professional look? One idea I had was to use Q160 balloons which also uses a small pump that fits perfectly in my inner jacket pocket. Would I have to learn new sculptures or can the same 260 sculptures be used with 160s?

Thanks,
Mike




The same sculptures can be done, they're just a bit thinner.
Alan Munro
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I hand out souvenirs that kids want, that aren't balloon animals. That way it has my contact info on it and I'm not feeling like a factory rat, making balloon animals. Simple tricks, simple advertising novelties and special shaped uninflated balloons can please the kids, if I give it to them just before I leave their table. I find that if I don't get to the magic, I'm not booking as much of the kind of outside work that I want.
Dannydoyle
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Explain the laws of time and space to your boss. You can't possibly get to everyone. No matter how badly they want you too.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Eddie Torres
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Quote:
On 2007-03-03 14:56, Dannydoyle wrote:
Explain the laws of time and space to your boss.


That's funny stuff!
Eddie Ivan Torres
Alan Munro
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Quote:
On 2007-03-03 14:56, Dannydoyle wrote:
Explain the laws of time and space to your boss. You can't possibly get to everyone. No matter how badly they want you too.

Then he would have to explain it to the regional manager. There's a reason that restaurant managers have such high turnovers.
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