PITTSBURG — Children and adults watched in awe as an agile juggler tossed balls from one hand to the other and through the air with precision and fluidity.

Brian Wendling is a comedy juggler from Kansas City, Missouri, and he has been juggling for over 40 years.

Wendling is a travels across the state, his most recent stop was at St. John Lutheran Church in Pittsburg on Friday.

Pittsburg Public Library hosted the event as part of their “Build a Better World” themed summer program.

“Libraries are positive places, used for many purposes,” Wendling said. “It’s like a community center in sense.

“It is a place to get out of the heat, a safe place for children and a place to learn.”

This is not the first time Wendling has come to Pittsburg, and won’t be the last according to PPL Director Bev Clarkson.

Clarkson said he had always been a big hit with the children and the adults. She said he has a good personality and works well with big crowds.  

“He is talented and shares the message of keep reading as he performs,” she said. “He is good with kids and encourages them to keep going — and reading.

“We will definitely bring him back again.”

During his performance, Wendling interacted with the children. One of his first acts included juggling a ball using a drum. The children were instructed to clap with the beat of the drum.

He climbed and balanced on a ladder and asked the crowd if he should go higher on the ladder and the children yelled ‘yes!’ and ‘don’t look down!”

Wendling picked children from the crowd and had them jump through a twirling lasso. The crowd filled with laughter when one of the children continued to crawl under the lasso — unknowing that it wasn’t over him anymore — he just kept crawling across the gym floor.

His balancing act on a ball brought shocked looks on the children’s faces as he balanced a few feet in front of them while juggling.

Pittsburg resident Jessica Brown was one of the adults he interacted with during the performance. He juggled ping pong balls by blowing them in the air with his mouth.

He filled both cheeks up like a chipmunk and walked over, through the crowd, to Brown — making her laugh with his silly face.

“This was great! I love how the library does so many programs that entertain the kids,” Brown said. “It is easier to have a fun summer with my kids.”

 — Stephanie Potter is a staff writer at the Morning Sun. She can be emailed at spotter@morningsun.net or follow her on Twitter @PittStephP and Instagram @stephanie_morningsun.