Originally from Yakima, Kevin Holzer lives in Oregon but returns several times a year to visit his family. This year he returned for the Central Washington State Fair – as a performer.
Holzer is a magician and made his stage debut as a student at the former Carroll High School in Yakima. It was around this time that he took part in the school’s annual Follies show after performing tricks on his six siblings.
“I’m still here and coming home to play,” the 1975-graduated, semi-retired Carroll signmaker said in an email ahead of his first stage show Friday. The fair continues until Sunday.
Holzer has spent 40 years entertaining audiences across the Pacific Northwest, but this is his first time performing at the fair in the town where he grew up.
Last Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Holzer was on the community stage early each afternoon and on the gazebo stage later. That was also the plan for Monday, but Holzer rained. So he decided to stay one more night, instead of going back to Gresham. He took his little rolling table with a few tricks on Tuesday afternoon, although he’s not expected to play again until Friday.
Ready for magic
When he’s not on stage, Holzer enjoys taking this scaled-down version of his magic show on the road, so to speak. The table, with the words “The Magic Touch of Kevin Holzer”, has a compartment for storage. This gives him the opportunity to promote his shows and have fun meeting the fairgrounds.
On Tuesday, Holzer stood by the community stage as he prepared to move his table closer to the entrance to the SunDome. Accessories included two sizes of Rubik’s Cubes, red foam clown noses, steel rings, glitter and Starburst candy.
“I go through a lot of glitter,” Holzer said of the trick where a handful of colorful sugar cubes mysteriously transform into Starbursts. “It’s easy here. I’m just moving my table and I’ll say, “Did you get your waterings?” “
Clown noses are multiplying exponentially in closed fists – much to the surprise of onlookers who thought they were only holding one or a few – and the two Rubik’s Cubes sort of end up with matching designs of each. side.
Holzer also likes to confuse with numbers. His business card has a column of numbers that gives a total adding the column, with a different total adding it. The serial number on a dollar bill he borrowed from a spectator, then put in an envelope, sort of matched the total some kids got after multiplying seemingly random three-digit numbers on a calculator. .
Wielding the inflexible steel rings is one of Holzer’s favorite magic tricks. When featured in the Yakima Herald-Republic 33 years ago, Holzer was pictured demonstrating his skill with the rings. At the time, he bought most of the items for his shows from mail order catalogs. Some were from a trick and puzzle store in downtown Yakima, Holzer said.
In addition to working as a sign maker for Dwinell Central Neon and then a large sign company in Portland, Holzer has served as Minister of Youth since 1980. “Most of my shows in Portland are for groups of young people.” did he declare.
Holzer’s next shows will be Friday at 1:30 p.m. (community stage) and 3:30 p.m. (gazebo stage). On Saturdays, he performs at 3:30 p.m. on the belvedere stage and at 6:30 p.m. on the community stage. Sunday show hours are 5:30 p.m. on the gazebo stage and 7:30 p.m. on the community stage.