With the joyful screams of children on carnival rides in the background, circus performer Dizzy Diamond focused himself for a moment before hurling knives at his wife, Trixie Turvy, who was strapped into a spinning wheel.
When the wheel slowed, two neat rows of blades stuck out of the wood on each side of Turvy’s torso.
“It gets me every time. It freaks me out,” show manager Tommy Breen said after the show.
A performer himself, Breen swallowed half a dozen swords and leaned forward to allow the gawking children in front to watch him pull them out.
“I think that people like that (the show) is big and it’s flashy and it’s weird,” Breen said.
Running from Tuesday, July 3 to the following Saturday, the Berlin Freedom Fest brought more than daring circus performances to the Berlin Lions Fairgrounds. It also featured a towering Ferris wheel, games, classic fried festival foods, and fireworks displays.
With seats so close to the fireworks they reverberated through one’s chest, Chloe DiCosimo and Colton Little said the Freedom Fest fireworks surpassed the displays in larger cities nearby.
“It felt like a rock concert,” DiCosimo said.
“That was the best fireworks I’ve ever seen,” Little said. “This was such a great experience, I’m so glad I came.”
While the Berlin Fair draws big crowds each fall, Jack Rudy, director of the Berlin Parks and Recreation Upbeat program, said the town lacks “a traditional carnival with rides” in the summer.
The Freedom Fest fit the bill.