Pardon me while I rave about Marcus the balloon artist

Back in August, I wrote about the family-friendly atmosphere at IHOP, and I briefly mentioned Marcus the balloon guy.

We don’t go to IHOP every week, but we go often enough that we could be considered regulars. Marcus, the balloon artist, is there every weekend. Not only is he a great balloon artist and a friendly guy – he talks with both the parents and the kids – but he remembers us. He always remembers TJ, and he asks him what kind of balloon he’d like.

Yesterday, TJ didn’t have an answer for what kind of balloon he wanted. Marcus asked us what he’d already gotten. When we listed that he’d gotten two kids of dinosaurs, a monkey with a banana, and both a puppy and a monkey on a motorcycle, he offered something special. Because it was slow in the restaurant, he asked if TJ liked Blues Clues. When he answered yes, he proceeded to make a really cool Blue balloon. Marcus said that’s one of the things he makes for birthday parties, and he was willing to make one for TJ because we’re super preferred customers because we always ask for balloons and we always tip well.

Blue was a hit.

Not only that, but Marcus came back to our table before we left. He offered to make TJ a sword “on the house.” He wouldn’t accept even a dollar; he insisted it was “on him.” Not only that, but he made a sword for Tom, too. So “Daddy can defend himself.” He pointed out that he figured Tom would be game for that because he was wearing a Big Dogs Pirates of the Caribbean shirt. Generous and observant!

Other diners were getting a chuckle out of TJ and Tom having a low-key sword fight at the table.

Marcus told us that, anything he makes at IHOP, he can make behind his back. He added that he can make anything he makes at birthday parties behind his back, too, but he can’t guarantee not to pop all of those. Tom thinks he’d like to see him make the monkey on a motorcycle behind his back sometime.

If we have a birthday party for TJ’s friends next year, instead of just family, I think we’re going to see if Marcus is available for the party!

If anyone else is from the New York Capital District, Marcus from A New Twist is highly recommended. He doesn’t know I’m writing this, so feel free to let him know who sent you if you get in touch with him!

Update June 2010: Marcus moved back to California sometime last year. IHOP occasionally has a different balloon guy come in on the weekends, but it’s not every week. We miss Marcus!

Christina Gleason (975 Posts)

That’s me: Christina Gleason. I’m a professional copywriter, editor, and blogger. My company is called Phenomenal Content. (Hire me!) I'm a multiply disabled autistic woman doing my best in this world built for abled people. I’m a geek for grammar, fantasy, and select types of gaming, including Twitch Sings and Plants vs Zombies 2. I hate vegetables. I have an intense phone phobia, so I’ll happily conduct business over email or IM instead.

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