I have a great birthday gift idea for your kid’s next birthday party. My sister and her husband hired a Mad Scientist here in Los Angeles and he, surprisingly, kept the attention of 20 kids for 2 hours on a hot sunny California afternoon.
At most birthday parties, my sister rents a giant waterslide that is perfect for the summer weather and is a constant joy for both kids and parents. The kids love the slide because they keep wet and bond with each other for hours. The parents love it because their kids expend hours of energy and are easy to get to sleep at night. And the parents get to sit in the shade, talk, eat and sip sodas.
That’s why it was so surprising that the Mad Scientist – www.madscience.org – was able to keep the kids interest. There was no water (other than the water used for his experiments – and the kids didn’t really move around a lot. They sat, instead, wide-eyed for his experiments and jokes, willingly for a long time. Note: they did have a few small pools to get the lids a bit of exercise and lots of food.
The Mad Scientist began with a few jokes and as he got into his experiments explained the details of each. He performed experiments with dry ice (creating fog), with an egg and a beaker glass (using oxygen and lack of oxygen to encourage an egg through a small opening) and taught the kids to make slime (yup, the same kind they used in Ghostbusters (www.fast-rewind.com/ghostbust.htm). The Mad Scientist was funny, told great jokes and even tried his hand as a ventriloquist with Eggbert (the Mad Scientist is, of course, bald himself), the infamous hardboiled egg, as his partner. Each had the kids laughing for two solid hours.
His finale was a double rocket launch where the remains fell back to earth with the help of a parachute.