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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Ballooning 101 » » Restaurant work (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

MagicB1S
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Knoxville Tenn.
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Are there any dvds that address the How To's of restaurants?
"There are Tricks To All Trades.... My Trade is all Tricks"

"An amature practices until he gets it right. A Professional Practices until he can't get it wrong"

www.Themagicchest.webs.com
bobswislosky@yahoo.com
Kevinr
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What do you wanna know I work Three
Robynhood
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Charleston, SC
166 Posts

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I wanna know things about doing restaurant work too. I want to eventually get into that. What are the best balloons for restaurant work? How should you approach people? Do you just go up to them and ask them if they want a balloon? Should you learn jokes and have material to make it more of a performance rather than just being a balloon factory?
preston eakins
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battle creek, michigan
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I have not done resturants yet however I think I can answer that last part you asked about should you learn material rather then jsut being a balloon factory and I have to say I hope I am never just, a balloon factory
MagicB1S
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Knoxville Tenn.
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Kevin, In your experience do you think it is best to Table Hop or stand in the Lobby and catch them on there way in the door. My thoughts are if you catch them on the way in the door you are accomplishing two things.... 1 you are out of the way of the wait staff and 2 you are keeping people occupied during the long dreaded wait for the table..... on the other hand if table hop it is more of a personal setting and you are entertaining just the table as to the crowd in the lobby..... I have done restaurants for Magic before but never Balloons. I just moved to a new city and want to start to get established here. any help on this topic is much appreciated
"There are Tricks To All Trades.... My Trade is all Tricks"

"An amature practices until he gets it right. A Professional Practices until he can't get it wrong"

www.Themagicchest.webs.com
bobswislosky@yahoo.com
Robynhood
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Charleston, SC
166 Posts

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To Preston: I hope you did not misunderstand me. I know the importance of timing and having to cater to a lot of people so you have to make things fast and efficiently. You see I really want to do birthday parties and eventually I'll be doing them with my fiance who is a magician. We were talking about ways to do balloon magic to segway from the magic to the balloons. In my readings and research in ballooning I've had it impressed upon me to be a performer and entertain when twisting rather than just being silent, or shy and awkward, as I sometimes am, while twisting. And I see this in footage I watch about how twisters engage with people, and the importance of being a people person. So I meant no disrespect and I do not believe you or anyone who is passionate about this art to be a balloon factory.
Kevinr
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Quote:
On 2012-04-03 16:17, MagicB1S wrote:
Kevin, In your experience do you think it is best to Table Hop or stand in the Lobby and catch them on there way in the door. My thoughts are if you catch them on the way in the door you are accomplishing two things.... 1 you are out of the way of the wait staff and 2 you are keeping people occupied during the long dreaded wait for the table..... on the other hand if table hop it is more of a personal setting and you are entertaining just the table as to the crowd in the lobby..... I have done restaurants for Magic before but never Balloons. I just moved to a new city and want to start to get established here. any help on this topic is much appreciated


The worst thing to do is sit in front and not go to the table. Its the biggest problem face painters have.

1. Kids get handed money from mom or dad and then pocket part of the cash.

2. Parents give the child $2 and then never see your balloon work till after the child comes back to the table and never see you perform with all your jokes. I can't tell you how many times I have seen a mom or dad pull out $2-$3 dollars and after I was done they are putting it back pulling out $5 or $10. You can't show value to a person you never meet standing at the side in a corner.

Wait till after a table is served food then go to a table. That way you are not in the way of a waiter.
preston eakins
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battle creek, michigan
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Quote:
On 2012-04-03 16:55, Robynhood wrote:
To Preston: I hope you did not misunderstand me. I know the importance of timing and having to cater to a lot of people so you have to make things fast and efficiently. You see I really want to do birthday parties and eventually I'll be doing them with my fiance who is a magician. We were talking about ways to do balloon magic to segway from the magic to the balloons. In my readings and research in ballooning I've had it impressed upon me to be a performer and entertain when twisting rather than just being silent, or shy and awkward, as I sometimes am, while twisting. And I see this in footage I watch about how twisters engage with people, and the importance of being a people person. So I meant no disrespect and I do not believe you or anyone who is passionate about this art to be a balloon factory.


if I came across wrong or cross sorry I was simply trying to impress the importance of performing over just twisting.
JC Johns
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Annapolis, MD, USA
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The type of restaurant will affect how you proceed.

In larger restaurants, going table to table is typically what works best for me. Someone asked how to approach tables. Generally, after you start making balloons every kid (and many adults) in the restaurant will want a balloon and they will be eagerly anticipating your arrival (so it makes approaching the table extremely easy). Some tables you approach will not want a balloon; when that happens just tell them you hope they enjoy the food and move on.

However, in smaller restaurants I find being in one spot can be helpful. I work a weekly gig at a smaller pizza restaurant and I set up near the front of the restaurant. Everyone in the restaurant can see me working and the kids gather around me. The adults are able to view everything I make, they see me engaging their kids, and they get to enjoy some quite time at their tables (which they greatly enjoy). As was mentioned earlier, many parents give their kids a $1 or $2 to put in my hat (very typical). However, after dinner is over and on their way out the restaurant, most parents generally stop by my stand and put more money in the hat and say they and the kids had a great time. Also, many adults without kids will stop by and tip me on the way out saying how enjoyable it was viewing the whole experience.

Robynhood, you asked about being a balloon factor or performing. I think its important to be both. Pump out some great looking balloons, but certainly engage the the audience as you make the balloons. This can be a joke, magic tricks, your banter with them, etc. People love a great balloon, but it’s the process of making what they want and all the fun stuff you do while making it that they truly enjoy (and gets you hired for future gigs). When I first started out I sought out funny things to do that were recommend by others, but that did not work too well (I forgot what was recommend, did not like it, etc.). What I have found is that overtime, you develop stuff suitable to your personally and style. So, just give it some time and you will figure out your balloon twisting persona.

And, while I just said that developing your own style is important, seeing how other people conduct themselves can be very helpful. One thing I like about Buster Balloon’s DVDs is that he produces great sculptures, but he also tells you some tips on how to get the best audience reaction while making the balloons. For example, if you make his monkey in a tree, you don’t make different portions of the sculpture, put those pieces aside, and then start making other portions of the sculpture. You basically blow up everything, loop all the balloons around your arms, and then start putting everything together. Having 15-20 balloons hanging from different portions of your body as you start to make the structure always gets an audible gasp from many within a restaurant.

Good luck.
Robynhood
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Charleston, SC
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Thank you so much guys, this is very helpful information. I'm so excited to start restaurant work and am practicing diligently to get myself ready. On a side note, I made some big Easter Bunnies and brought them into work and put them in the brake room, and I had two co-workers ask me to make balloons at the kids birthday parties. Both are a few months away so I'll have time to practice, and I'm so psyched.
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