The International Jugglers’ Association was founded in June of 1947 at an International Brotherhood of Magicians convention in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (USA). Twenty jugglers met together and had a memorable juggling session, highlighted by Bobby Jule’s introduction of the Chiesa Brothers, who showed off 8 and 9 ring juggling and other skills that they presented in their act with Ringling Brothers.
After the juggling session, eight of the jugglers, led by Art Jennings, Roger Montandon, Harry Lind and Jack Greene, met at a local restaurant and decided that a separate organization just for jugglers would be beneficial. They chose a name, drew up bylaws and selected the organization’s first officers. Other founding members at the meeting were Bernie Joyce, George Barvinchak, Bill Dunham and Eddie Johnson. Other jugglers in attendance at the convention became charter members of the IJA. They included Bobby Jule, Vin Carey, Doc Baldwin, Teddy Ray and Joe Fleckenstein.
We salute our founding fathers who created the IJA to answer the need for an “organization for jugglers that would provide meetings at regular intervals in an atmosphere of mutual friendship”.
To learn more, please visit juggle.org.