Jill Schmidt, aka "Silly Jilly", of Webster Groves, will be one of the featured balloonists at an international balloon convention called Twist and Shout, set for Jan. 30 - Feb. 3 at the St. Louis Airport Marriott Hotel.
Twist and Shout will welcome more than 350 balloon artists from around the globe.
Other local balloon twisters and artists include Brian Styles and Robin Martens, of Premier Entertainment, St. Charles, Joe Tierney, of St. Charles, Brian Peck, of Creve Coeur, Dave Brannon (Taterbug the Clown), of Lake Saint Louis, Donna Wiles (Spunky Beans), of St. Charles, Pam Mullhall (Pokey the Clown), of St. Louis and Thad James (Sammy J) of Fenton.
Twist and Shout is said to be the largest annual gathering of balloon artists and entertainers in the world.
James said Twist and Shout began in 2000 as an entertainer-based convention specializing in balloon figure making. The convention is held in a different city each year. This is the second time it has been in St. Louis. The annual event has grown to include classes in marketing, customer relations and show performance. Attendees can participate in competitions including: small, medium and large figure construction, timed figure-making, balloon fashion designs and stage act performances.