Balloon Artists, Clowns, & Face Painters
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Balloon Artists, Clowns, & Face Painters
Recommendations for a kids party balloon artist?
I'm thinking about hiring a balloon artist to entertain the
kiddies at my son's upcoming 2nd birthday party. Does
anyone know of a balloon artist they would recommend? Or
what it would reasonably cost to hire one?
birthday planning mom
Twistyman! He's wonderful! He's been at several birthday
parties and the Orinda 4th of July party - the kids adore
him! http://twistyman.com michelle
Twistyman is the best. We hired him for many birthday
parties until the kids grew out of him. He is so good and
great with kids. The pirate theme was great but 2 may be too
young to appreciate.
Karen in rockridge
Hi, I'm looking for face painting recommendations for a 4
year old party. The ones on the BPN now are a little dated.
I'm looking for someone who does this regularly (as opposed
to a teenager, etc). thanks!
We've worked with both Brandy Esparza and Donna Now at the
Point Richmond Music outdoor concerts each summer. Both are
great with children and do wonderful designs. Brandy -
firstname.lastname@example.org Donna - DonnaNow@comcast.net Donna is
also a sign painter at Trader Joe's. Sydney Metrick
Alana Dill (youbecomeart.com) is the best I've come across.
Her designs are beautiful, she uses only the safest
products, and she is a lovely gentle lady who is very good
with children. My 2 year old was almost in a trance while
being painted with a sparkly rainbow butterfly! Rachael
Try Alana Dill at www.YouBecomeArt.com We have been to a
few parties where she has done face painting. She is
Does anyone have
any recent experiences with a party entertainer for a soon
to be 3 year old's birthday? I'm interested in balloon
twisting and face painting for about an hour. Buki the
clown looked good, but she's already booked. I came across
a website called 'Happily Ever Laughter'. Any experience
with this company? Thank you in advance! Tiffany
I'm a face painter myself, and a very good one, but I'm
pitiful with balloons unless you want your balloon animal to
resemble a pile of intestines. :-D
I've heard good things about Happily Ever Laughter, but
don't know any of their cast personally.
Buki is excellent and is often booked well in advance.
Cheryl Ferguson of Bay Area Stars is lots of fun. Violet
the Clown from Vallejo is wonderful. Paula Moors from
Petaluma is a great balloon artist. Twistyman doesn't face
paint anymore, but he rocks the balloons. He's also truly
hilarious. You can easily web-search for any of the above.
I know some of these folks as friends, others only by
reputation among the party entertainment community. I'd be
glad if you just went ahead and hired me, but if you want
balloons - be glad to know you have some options.
Keep in mind that summer is busiest for entertainers! If
you want a party entertainer between Memorial Day and Labor
Day, or on a holiday - book early! For instance, if you want
a July 4th facepainter or balloon artist to help jazz up
your parade float, get cracking now. You'll be saving
yourself some stress (and possibly some money, since some
entertainers have a higher last-minute booking or holiday
Face painting and balloons can bring fun to just about any
event, for any age group. Look around online and see what's
possible now - we are light-years ahead of the 'heart on the
cheek' so common a few years ago.
Last but not least - no matter who you hire, make sure
they're using professional-grade cosmetics - NO acrylics,
Sharpies, or craft glitter on skin! Safety first.
I have videotaped when Celebrity Gems (510) 581-5964 has
provided entertainment for children. They screen and
arrange balloon artists, face painters, puppet shows,
magicians, and jugglers. They say, 'We take the guess work
out of planning since we screen our performers. Learn more
by reading our 180 + blogs, and visiting our web.'
Carla Winter at http://www.partiart.com/troupes/index.html
has a great number of Excellent Face Painters and Balloon
Artists and more than likely one in your area. Check out her
site and best of luck.
Entertainer for 3rd birthday in home
I'm looking for an entertainer for my daughters third birthday
party which we will be having at home with a group of energetic 3-5
year olds. As I also have a 6 month old that needs my attention I
am hoping to find somone who also leads the party activities and
keeps things on track.
Shobi Dobi is one of the finest face painters I know and is wonderful
with small children she always comes as a clown and also does clowning
workshops she also is responsible for the hospital clown
This is worth checking out.
Editor: recommendations were also received for
Hi - I am looking for a REALLY good balloon artist for a party
at a senior care facility. Anyone out there hire someone
recently that might work well with adults? Looking for someone
who will be kind but not condescending, communicate clearly and
take their time, and who can make really great balloon jewelry
and hats. Kind of like the guy you see if you google 'balloon
man visits the nursing home'. Thanks!
I saw a recommendation a few weeks ago for this guy:
I found a really easy-going, relaxed balloon artist who I used for
my daughter's 5th birthday party. Her name is Melissa Contildes
email: balloonstar@aol) she has a website at www.balloonstar.com
She isn't as frenetic as some of the ballon artists I have met.
Her personality would be a good match for the situation you
describe of elderly folks.
East Bay mom
We saw a balloon artist named Brian Asman at the Marin Farmers'
Market last year who was quite good. We picked up his business
card for reference but haven't yet hired him for anything. His
phone number is 415-775-9975 and his email address is
We saw the this guy at the CA Academy of Sciences opening. By the
time we got to the head of the line, he'd been there for four hours
already and he was still cheery as can be, he's great with the kids.
Not sure if you're looking for a children's entertainer but we
just worked with our first ''children's entertainer'' and it was
great! We just celebrated a joint birthday party for our 6 and 4
year old boys. Magic Dan (415/337.8500) came to our home and
entertained 25 young children (and their folks). He engaged the
kids, held their attention for the entire show, and even got some
laughs from the parents. Dan is very professional, respectful, and
a pleasure to work with. We highly recommend him.
I'm looking for a talented face painter, preferably not a clown, for my
girls 4th birthday party. Does anyone have recommendations?
Thanks so much!
Sarah Stand is wonderful. She did my 5-year-old's party, and is quite
I would like to highly recommend Oliver Twist, we just had him at
our son's 3rd birthday party and he was great!
Re: Birthday Party Entertainer for 3-year-olds
check out local berkeley artist, twistyman, who did our
daughter's 3rd birthday party last year!! he is a great
entertainer and creates some amazing balloon art! check him out
I'm looking for a person to do some face painting and balloon
art for our son's first birthday party. The recommendations in
the archives are fairly old so I'd love some updates
suggestions for a ''gentle'' clown who can entertain the little
keep in mind that face painting is probably not all that much
fun for a 1 yr old, and many tykes younger than 4 find clowns
and painted faces scary.
i have a great kids entertainer, theresa castro with ''for kids
only and big kids too''. she's great with kids big and small,
what ever budget you have she'll tell you exactly what you
can get, many characters to choose from and she's not one
of those ''scary'' clowns. i've referred her to many and they
keep using her year after year for thier parties. theresa
I recently met Buki the clown at the emeryville Ikea. On a
weekend she was tending to a HUGE line of kids who wanted faces
painted (they could look at a binder and select a theme) and to
get balloons tied. Now, I am not a huge fan of this sort of
entertainment but my kids sure are and they loved it. Though
completely inundated, Buki spent time with each child handing the
child a mirror once face was completed and making sure the child
liked their face. She made each child feel special and truly took
balloon tying to an art form with elaborate multiballoon pieces
finished in seconds. I was so impressed, I took her card- she is
talented, great with children and fun. Buki the Clown: 522-2229.
I'm an event coordinator in SF and just worked on a company
picnic where they had an amazing children's entertainer. She
does beautiful face painting. She didn't do balloon tying at the
event, but I know she offers it. You also have a choice of a
wide variety of costumes she can wear that are very cute (clown,
fairy princess, etc.). While kids were waiting to get their face
painted she had stickers, crayons, etc. out on a table for them
to play with. She did some really neat face painting for the
older kids too. She also offers the service of having someone
take polaroids of the kids to give to them.
Her contact info:
Susannah ''Sunny'' Simmons
sunnydays at joimail.com
Give Theresa Castro 510.697.9734 a call. I got her name from
BPN. She did a wonderful job with face painting and she also
made balloon animals at my son's first birthday party. She can
come dressed as a clown or other characters, and she offers
additional activities, e.g., treasure chest, lollipop tree, etc.
I need to find an entertainer for my 5-yr-old's birthday party.
I contacted the magicians recommended in the Archive, but they
charge around $200-300.
What I would like is someone who would keep the kids occupied
for 45 minutes, for under $75.
Although I would prefer a good show (magic?) or face painting
and baloon making, I really cannot afford any of those magicians
with reviews in the Los Angeles Times.
Do you know any reasonably priced, but fun, entertainer?
When my daughter turned 5, I hired Dalia Vidor. She comes
dressed up as a clown, performs magic and then makes balloon
animals for every child in the second part of her show. We were
all very pleased. It was just the right thing! The show was 45
minutes long and I paid $75. That was two years ago. Dalia can
be reached at d_vidor AT yahoo.com
You should try Theresa Castro at ''For Kids Only and Big
Kids Too!''. She's a great kids entertainter. She has various
characters to choose from, does balloon animals, face
painting, treasure chest, lollipop tree. She's also very aware
when some children are afraid of characters. She also gets
the adults involved. She works with whatever budget you
have. Her number is 510-521-2495.
Check out this guy: www.donotheclown.com
We hired him for a parish event with small children (5 and
under) and he was great -- very gentle with the kids and
careful not to get in their faces. (Some children are very
frightened by clowns). I think we had to spend $200 for 1.5
hours ... you might be able to negotiate the price you have in
Also recommended: Teen Magicians
I am looking for a birthday party entertianer for a joint party
for my soon to be 2 year old and five year old, so I need
someone who is little kid friendly. I am looknig for a
balloonest or magician /clown. The party is in San Francisco.
Chevy's in Alameda has several balloonist that are also students
at UC Berkeley. We asked one of them to entertain for a
birthday party (sorry it was two years ago so I don't remember
her name and I'm sure she has since graduated) and she was great
with the balloons, kids and adults. We felt better too knowing
we supporting a starving student. I would recommend checking
them out at Chevy's--it's right on the estuary so you can have
decent food and a great view (also offers indoor/outdoor dining)-
-and then ask them then and there if they'd do your party. I'm
not sure which nights of the week/weekend the balloonist are
there so you may want to call ahead to check. Have fun!
We have used ''Cool Cat'' to entertain at my daughter's 3rd and
4th birthday parties in our home (over the past two
years). ''Cool Cat'' (Alan) was very fun, and my daughter had a
great time. Alan provides balloons (shaping them into animals
or objects, depending upon the child's desire), does incredible
face painting, and sings songs accompanied by his guitar. He
can also dress up in various outfits (my daughter was scared of
clowns, so Alan came both years as ''Safari Sam''). He is just
wonderful with the children, very patient and warm, and we had
almost 20 kids here each year. I highly recommend him. His
website is www.coolcatkid.com. He is based in San Francisco and
can be reached at 415-586-4254.
I have seen previous posting for balloon artists, but I would like more
updated suggestions for a balloon artist for a birthday party for ages 3-
We are also wondering if anyone has used ''Sir Lantz'' at their parties?
And if so, would you recommend him?
Sir lantz did a school party at my son's preschool, they all
seemed to enjoy it and he's made balloon animals, crowns, etc
when we've dined out at a local restaurant on kids night. He
seems nice and kids are fascinated. I'm not sure what he
charges for home parties, but I think he has web site..try
Twistyman is a young cute happy bright creative party & fair
balloon guy who also plays a variety of musical instruments &
does many kinds of creative work. I've seen him in action at
events & he always gets raves from adults and kids alike. VERY
good, five stars. (He often plays at Starry Plough Irish music
sessions on Sunday nights at 8.)
Email him: twistyman3 at earthlink.net
Berkeley resident Twistyman studied at the San Francisco
State School of Creative Arts, where he graduated with honors
and received an award from Francis Coppola for Directing and
Producing..... he has lived in Ireland and traveled
extensively throughout Europe, Peru, and the southwest U.S. ...
(to seek) his spiritual heritage and learn about indigenous
traditions of other lands.
~ Christine V.
Check out The Buddy Club, through which you can hire any type
of kid entertainer, including balloon ''sculptors.''
I would like to follow up on the recommendation in the last
newsletter for the balloon artist from the Buddy Club.
Every year my family attends Berkeley Tuolumne camp at the same
time several Buddy Club performers are there.
From what I have seen, their Balloon Guy would NOT be a good
performer at a party for children under 6. He is a real expert
who connects with older kids who have detexterity and patience.
His creations are great. But if your child is younger than 6
another balloon artist would be a better choice.
Also, I would like to say if you're looking for a magician for
your party, the Buddy Club's Jay Alexander is incredible. His
tricks would probably be better understood by older children
(not that he's bad with little kids, the tricks are just a
Please contact me if you'd like more specifics.
We're looking for recommendations for a Balloon Clown for a
child's 5yr. old birthday party. Looking for someone to come in
costume and create balloon hats, animals etc. for the kids.
We're located in North Berkeley.
Thanks in advance.
I used Lulu the Clown (Lori Soto) for my son's 3rd birthday.
She was great. She made really creative balloon hats that even
the adults had fun with. She even did face painting. Her
rates were $125/hr 1.5 yrs ago.
Lulu the clown is a great ballon clown, her number.
I viewed her in action at a YMCA Health Fair - very
[Editor] phone number for LuLu as of March 2004 is (510) 253-6598
I'm planning my 3 yr old's birthday party for the end
of the month and I'm looking for someone who makes
balloon hats. My sister had someone for her son's
birthday several years ago but can't remember who it
was. He make really fun hats out of the long narrow
balloons used to make balloon animals. It would be
great to find someone who also sings songs or does
tricks or something, too.
The funniest clown I've ever seen at a kid party does
excellent balloons and great gag magic:
Warning: he's not cheap.
Also, fairly recently, my son got an elaborate balloon
hat and sword from a clown guy who hangs out in front
of FAO Schwartz in SF on the weekends.
See my 1999 recommendation for Lance Sneed at the
ucbparents website under arts/partyentertainers. He
made all kinds of complicated things using balloons,
including pirate hats, I recall. Someone else has a
2001 recommendation for him there, with contact info.
I've hired Nicole Portwood in the past for a corporate event, but she does
birthday parties, too. She is a clown that does juggling, face painting,
balloons, etc. 510/538-9390 or portwoodjr AT aol.com.
A friend of mine, Dalia Vidor, is an experienced (10 years) party
entertainer and, yes, balloon specialist. Her standard party "package"
is one hour's entertainment including balloon animals. She has worked as
a clown as well. Here's her pager no.: (510) 297-1427. Good luck!
We hired "Sir Lantz" (I believe this is the same person as Lance Snead), to perform at
our son's third birthday party. He was absolutely wonderful! Extremely professional,
very conscientious (I think he made a test drive out to our remote home a day or two
before the party to make sure he knew exactly were to go on the day of the party). The
kids and parents loved all his balloon creations. After balloons he did a little bit of magic (~10 minutes), but the 2-3 year olds didn't really pay attention. The few four and five year olds present did like the magic though. We had approximately 15 children at the party ranging in age from 2-5 and he was able to keep the whole group entertained during the balloon show (~50 minutes).
Visit his very informative web site for more information (www.sirlantz.com) or call him at
(925) 280-0112. Feel free to contact me if you want more specific information regarding
our experience with him. S.Jenkins
Happy the Clown, aka Dub Blackwood, (510) 525-0251. His shtick is not
polished--it's deliberately low-key and transparent--and kids have a
wonderful time both playing along with it and seeing through it.
We hired Lance Sneed, who advertises in Parents' Press, for our son's 5th
birthday. I think his title was "Sir Lance". He mostly made balloon animals
and such--he said kids that age aren't really into magic. He did do a few
magic tricks, which the kids liked, but they *really* liked the balloons.
Warning: one balloon artist/magician I spoke to when I was looking warned me
that balloons break easily on grass: the grass is very sharp to them. Our
party was at a park and I saw that this was true. So expect it if your party
is on grass. Fran
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