Juggling Club ups the game with flaming torches

Kyle Fosse- Staff Writer

On Friday night, passersby outside of Kuyper Apartments were treated to a unique juggling performance by senior engineering student Eric Rowe and senior digital media student Connor Neal. The two juggled flaming torches before the Fall Music Festival.

“Juggling fire was pretty intimidating at first,” said Neal, who juggled torches for the first time on Friday. “But once I actually started juggling, it was really fun and exciting.”

The event marked the third torch-handling experience while juggling for Rowe, who founded the juggling club on campus last year. Since its inception, the club has grown from one or two regular members to a handful of about eight weekly members of varying skill levels, said Rowe.

Rowe has been juggling since about the age of eight, and he has since developed himself in skill level and various tricks. When he arrived on-campus, he heard that Dordt alumnus (then a student) Chris Geels had juggled torches in the B.J. Haan auditorium as a Talent Extravaganza (TX) act. Rowe and Geels juggled torches together during exam week last year.

“It’s sort of the next level,” said Rowe in regards to juggling flaming torches. When he was twelve, his father and brother passed torches over him, and the image has stayed with him as inspiration.

“It was really fun to watch,” said freshman Alisha Geisselmann. “When you don’t know the people, it’s cool, but when you do know the person juggling, you’re just sitting there cringing the entire time.” She said she would definitely be interested in watching the group if they performed with fire again.

Rowe hopes to juggle again next weekend on Saturday, Oct. 22, with his father, who will be visiting from Washington.

The juggling club meets every Wednesday, from 6:30-8:00pm, in the Science Building lobby near Jacob’s Ladder. The high ceiling space there allows for high throws, says Rowe.

While the Defender Days weekend offers parents the opportunity to watch various sports games, interact with the faculty and staff members on-campus and watch theatre productions, these attractions are now joined by the spectator event of the Juggling Club to offer a fuller, more extensive experience.

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