Juggling convention

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Many countries, cities or juggling clubs hold their own annual juggling convention or juggling festival. These are the backbone of the juggling scene, the events that regularly bring jugglers from a wide area together to socialize. The attendance of a convention can be anything from a few dozen to a few thousand people.

Typical activities[edit]

The principle focus of most juggling conventions is the main hall - where any participant can juggle freely, share and learn tricks, and try out multi-person passing patterns. Additionally, more formal "workshops" are often organized, in which expert jugglers work with small groups on specific skills and techniques. Most Juggling Conventions will also include a big show (open to the general public), competitions and juggling games. Many juggling conventions host some kind of Renegade Show, an open stage where anyone can, at short notice, get up and perform just about anything.

The Juggling Edge maintains a searchable database of past and upcoming juggling festivals and events.

Types of juggling conventions[edit]

Conventions can be split into three distinct types, though all call themselves "Juggling Conventions":

"Festival"[edit]

These last three to ten days and can attract between 150 and 5,000 people. Most attendees camp, pitching tents within the convention site, and this is covered by the cost of attendance. Onsite there are usually food tents, bar tents, various sports halls or large bigtops for juggling space. During the day there can be shows, workshops, games, parades and exhibitions. Every night there is entertainment provided in the forms of professional shows, open stages, late night stages, live music, parties and more. The largest festival style conventions are held in Europe.

Some notable festival style conventions are:

  • The European Juggling Convention - The world's largest convention visits different European countries each year. The first EJC was held in 1978 in Brighton, England and attracted 11 jugglers from five different countries (England, Ireland, Scotland, Germany, USA). The convention lasts 7 to 9 days. In 2011 it was held in Munich, Germany and attracted over 7200 jugglers from all over the world, making it the biggest EJC since the start of this convention. The 2014 EJC was held in Millstreet, Ireland for the second time after an earlier edition in 2006. Next year, 2015 EJC will take place in Bruneck, Italy and after that 2016 EJC in Almere, the Netherlands.
  • The British juggling convention - a 5-7 day juggling convention in the UK, now attracts between 750-1,000 each year.
  • Israeli Juggling Convention - runs for 5 days over the Passover holiday and is held in a national park in the north of Israel. It attracts between 1200-1400 jugglers.
  • Berlin Juggling Convention - Germany's largest juggling convention, about 600-800 people attend each year. It is very cheap and some food is included.
  • Circulation - A 3-5 day multicultural juggling festival in New Zealand currently in its fifth year of operation attended by up to 300 people.
  • The Dutch Juggling Convention - Runs each year in a different city in the Netherlands and is attended by about 500 jugglers.
  • Broxford (formerly The Bristol Juggling and Circus Skills Convention) - a 9 day convention held in southwest England. It isn't very large (about 300 people) but has a very dedicated core group that return year after year.
  • The Bungay Balls Up - a 10 day convention held in Suffolk, UK - small and friendly, held on a working farm.
  • The Turkish Juggling Convention - From now on this convention will be 7 days in Sundance-Antalya (more than 300 people)
  • The Swedish Juggling Convention - Four day convention inside a gymnastics hall. Always held over the Easter holiday, in Partille, outside of Gothenburg, Sweden.
  • Sydney Juggling Convention - Sydney, Australia - a four day convention held over the Australia Day long weekend in late January each year.
  • Brianza Juggling Convention - Imbersago (MI), Italia - a four day convention held over the long weekend in May each year (about 1000 people)

"Conference"[edit]

These are held in city center hotels or conference centers. They are invariably in North America and slightly more expensive than the European Juggling Convention. Camping is only rarely an option, as most are held in hotel convention centers. Notable conference-style conventions are :

  • The IJA Summer Festival - The first and longest running juggling convention. It is held in different cities each year, with the largest attendance in the 1990s with up to 1,300 jugglers. In 2004 it was held in Buffalo, New York, and attracted about 800 jugglers.
  • The World Juggling Federation Convention - the first WJF convention was held in Las Vegas in December 2004 and attracted 150-200 jugglers.

"One Day"[edit]

Small, regional conventions that can actually last up to two or three days. These usually attract between 25 and 250 people, have workshops throughout the day and a show in the evening of the main day. At these conventions accommodation and food is not normally provided. They are usually held in sports centers, schools or universities. Some notable one day conventions are:

The four largest conventions[edit]

The most well attended convention is the European Juggling Convention (EJC), along with the British Juggling Convention (BJC), the Israeli Juggling Convention (IJC), and the IJA Festival (IJA), and they all take place annually.

The BJC occurs every spring, the IJC is staged over Passover, and the EJC and IJA are summer festivals. The BJC takes place in Britain, the IJC in Israel, and the EJC in Europe, as one might expect, but the IJA Festival has so far proven to be an exclusively North American event, despite it being the principal date in the calendar of the International Jugglers' Association.

Dates and locations of the four largest festivals[edit]

This list was compiled from data provided by Mike Armstrong at UK_Jugglers, a Yahoo! group. A Yahoo! login will be required to view the source material.

Year British Juggling Convention European Juggling Convention IJA Festival Israeli Juggling Convention
2016 EJC 39: Almere, The Netherlands
2015 BJC 28: Darton EJC 38: Bruneck, Italy IJA 68: Quebec City, Canada IJC 22: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2014 BJC 27: Darton EJC 37: Millstreet, Ireland IJA 67: West Lafayette, Indiana IJC 21: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2013 BJC 26: Pickering EJC 36: Toulouse, France IJA 66: Bowling Green, Ohio IJC 20: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2012 BJC 25: Southend EJC 35: Lublin, Poland IJA 65: Winston-Salem, North Carolina IJC 19: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2011 BJC 24: Nottingham EJC 34: Munich, Germany IJA 64: Rochester, Minnesota IJC 18: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2010 BJC 23: Huddersfield EJC 33: Joensuu, Finland IJA 63: Sparks, Nevada IJC 17: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2009 BJC 22: Norwich EJC 32: Vitoria/Gasteiz, Basque country, Spain IJA 62: Winston-Salem, North Carolina IJC 16: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2008 BJC 21: Doncaster EJC 31: Karlsruhe, Germany IJA 61: Lexington, Kentucky IJC 15: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2007 BJC 20: Nottingham EJC 30: Athens, Greece IJA 60: Winston-Salem, North Carolina IJC 14: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2006 BJC 19: Bodmin EJC 29: Millstreet, Ireland IJA 59: Portland, Oregon IJC 13: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2005 BJC 18: Perth EJC 28: Ptuj, Slovenia IJA 58: Davenport, Iowa IJC 12: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2004 BJC 17: Derby EJC 27: Carvin, France IJA 57: Buffalo, New York IJC 11: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2003 BJC 16: Brighton EJC 26: Svendborg, Denmark IJA 56: Reno, Nevada IJC 10: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2002 BJC 15: Whitstable EJC 25: Bremen, Germany IJA 55: Reading, Pennsylvania IJC 9: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2001 BJC 14: Cardiff EJC 24: Schiedam/Rotterdam, Netherlands IJA 54: Madison, Wisconsin IJC 8: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
2000 BJC 13: York EJC 23: Karlsruhe, Germany IJA 53: Montreal, Canada IJC 7: Gan HaShlosha National Park (Sachne)
1999 BJC 12: Durham EJC 22: Grenoble, France IJA 52: Niagara Falls, New York IJC 6: Yafit, Jordan Valley
1998 BJC 11: Bristol EJC 21: Edinburgh, UK IJA 51: Primm, Nevada IJC 5: Kibbutz Tuval
1997 BJC 10: Nottingham EJC 20: Torino, Italy IJA 50: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania IJC 4: Hebrew University, Givat Ram, Jerusalem
1996 BJC 9: Edinburgh EJC 19: Grenoble, France IJA 49: Rapid City, South Dakota IJC 3: Hineni Center, Downtown Jerusalem
1995 BJC 8: Norwich EJC 18: Goteburg, Sweden IJA 48: Las Vegas, Nevada
1994 BJC 7: Manchester EJC 17: Hagen, Germany IJA 47: Burlington, Vermont
1993 BJC 6: Birmingham EJC 16: Leeds, UK IJA 46: Fargo, North Dakota
1992 BJC 5: Coventry EJC 15: Banyoles, Spain IJA 45: Montreal, Canada
1991 BJC 4: Leeds EJC 14: Verona, Italy IJA 44: St Louis, Missouri
1990 BJC 3: Exeter EJC 13: Oldenburg, Germany IJA 43: Los Angeles, California
1989 BJC 2: Bath EJC 12: Maastricht, Netherlands IJA 42: Baltimore, Maryland IJC --: Eilat
1988 BJC 1: London EJC 11: Bradford, UK IJA 41: Denver, Colorado IJC 2: Eilat
1987 EJC 10: Saintes, France IJA 40: Akron, Ohio IJC 1: Eilat
1986 EJC 9: Castellar, Spain IJA 39: San Jose, California
1985 EJC 8: Louvain la Neuve, Belgium IJA 38: Atlanta, Georgia
1984 EJC 7: Frankfurt, Germany IJA 37: Las Vegas, Nevada
1983 EJC 6: Laval, France IJA 36: Purchase, New York
1982 EJC 5: Copenhagen, Denmark IJA 35: Santa Barbara, California
1981 EJC 4: London, UK IJA 34: Cleveland, Ohio
1980 EJC 3: London, UK IJA 33: Fargo, North Dakota
1979 EJC 2: Edinburgh, UK IJA 32: Amherst, Massachusetts
1978 EJC 1: Brighton, UK IJA 31: Eugene, Oregon
1977 IJA 30: Newark, Delaware
1976 IJA 29: Los Angeles, California
1975 IJA 28: Youngstown, Ohio
1974 IJA 27: Sarasota, Florida
1973 IJA 26: Livingstone, New Jersey
1972 IJA 25: Rocky Hill, Connecticut
1971 IJA 24: Rocky Hill, Connecticut
1970 IJA 23: Los Angeles, California
1969 IJA 22: Los Angeles, California
1968 IJA 21: San Mateo, California
1967 IJA 20: Fallsburg, New York
1966 IJA 19: Salem, Massachusetts
1965 IJA 18: Bronx, New York
1964 IJA 17: Wheeling, Virginia
1963 IJA 16: Wickford, Rhode Island
1962 IJA 15: Erie, Pennsylvania
1961 IJA 14: Bristol, Tennessee
1960 IJA 13: Madison, Wisconsin
1959 IJA 12: Wickford, Rhode Island
1958 IJA 11: Ashtabula, Ohio
1957 IJA 10: Chautauqua, New York
1956 IJA 9: Norwalk, Ohio
1955 IJA 8: Lancaster, Pennsylvania
1954 IJA 7: Elkhart, Indiana
1953 IJA 6: Erie, Pennsylvania
1952 IJA 5: Altoona, Pennsylvania
1951 IJA 4: Williamsport, New York
1950 IJA 3: Jamestown, New York
1949 IJA 2: Jamestown, New York
1948 IJA 1: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania