MANCHESTER CENTER - Sam Johnson, a.k.a "Slackwire Sam," will be on hand to entertain StreetFest goers this evening.

In season 8 of "America's Got Talent," Johnson of Vermont made it to the quarterfinal round of the TV show with his feats of acrobatic skill on a slackwire. Juggling and unicycle riding atop the wire along with his humorous dialog will have onlookers gasping for breath and laughing at his antics.

The StreetFest will be held on Main Street from 6-9 p.m. Admission is free. Live music, performances, food, wine and beer, displays of craft and specialty products, and a display of the restored antique fire pumper of the Manchester Historical Society are just some of the attractions that will be featured.

"Slackwire Sam," quarterfinalist on season 8 of "America’s Got Talent" brings his act to the StreetFest, which will be held on
"Slackwire Sam," quarterfinalist on season 8 of "America's Got Talent" brings his act to the StreetFest, which will be held on Main Street on Friday, Aug. 15, from 6-9 p.m. (Courtesy photo)

At the age of 14, Johnson ran away from his Burlington home and joined a circus (during the summers, with his parents' permission). There he was mashed and molded into a performer by coaches from the famed Moscow Circus.

Soon Johnson found himself performing dangerous stunts atop an 80-foot sway-pole. His appearance at the StreetFest marks his return to an active schedule of street performances.

Joining Johnson on the Main Street stage will be the six-piece Irish band, Get Up Jack. The band began as a special celebration to commemorate the 40-year musical partnership of Mike DeAngelis and John Haggerty, both founding members of The Porters and Hair Of The Dog.


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Called a joyous, retro-romp of energetic and charismatic performers in Irish music, their soaring vocals and enthusiastic performances have drawn comparisons to the old- school groups of their youth (like The Dubliners, The Clancy Brothers and The Wolfe Tones), yet it is their own unique instrumentation, style and delivery that makes them a one-of-a-kind experience.

Lining the street will be booths featuring the works of artisans Misa Sol and Dorset Daughters Fine Soaps. Activities just for kids will be provided by The Downtown School, Northshire Day School and Bogate Studio.

For more information email t.hayes @manchester-vt.gov or call 362-5333.