Friday, July 23, 2010

Dancing Man

For more than twenty years we sold "limberjacks" at the Village Craftsmen. These jointed wooden dolls with a dowel attached at the back can be made to dance on a thin wooden paddle. Of all the items we've ever carried, this one is most remembered by children and adults alike. Unfortunately, they sold well only when I demonstrated them...and after thousands of demos (probably more than one hundred thousand demos by my calculations) I just had to put the dancing man away. Then last year I brought my limberjack out of retirement and took him to the Wednesday evening Opry where I made him come alive during our final performance. He is now a regular feature of our show.

Wednesday night I met Bisse Bowman at the Opry and she sent me this link to a video she made last year:

Many thanks to Bisse for the link. I hope you enjoy the dance...and be sure to join us if you are on the island Wednesday nights during the season.

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the 1913 wreck of the George W. Wells. You can read it here:


  1. bill kostar7:47 AM

    You certainly don't want to go down in the Guiness Book of Records as the only person in the world with carpal tunnel syndrome caused by demonstrating "the dancing man"!
    The Kostar/Nunn families are heading for the island the first week of August and can't wait to visit old friends, visit our regular haunts, and make lots of new acquaintances.
    See you soon!

  2. Anonymous10:38 AM

    I am not a marketing major but your video could go viral . Also Zig Ziglar a noted top marketing guy has a method called the puppy dog something or other you demo -- but do you not let the customer try the "Dancing Man" let the customer bond with the product and want to bring it home?? also perhaps If you "owned " this thing give it a hipper name. a Nautical Wheeler which would be a great name for a square dancing group located on an island The Ocracoke Nautical wheeler doing the dog paddle dance perhaps Lachlan could be the new product spokesman children cute little kids sell well

  3. A.Bailey6:06 PM

    We bought one of those from you when I was a kid. I even remember you giving the demo...and you are right - after the demo I had to have one. :)

    We just returned from two weeks down there and miss it already. I realized on the way home that I've been going there for 39 years. My kids want to go nowhere else...the magic has been passed to a new generation.

    Thanks for all you do to keep the history reading your updates, historical facts and perspective.