No clowning around, here’s your pie

Tom Myers runs the pie walk at the River People Farmers Market Thursdays in Astoria, where he hands out one of his wife's pies to a couple lucky participants each week.

On Thursday afternoons Warrenton resident Tom Myers gives out his wife’s homemade pies at the River People Farmers Market in downtown Astoria.

“I like all her pies,” he said. “She makes fine pies.”

There not quite given out to just anyone. His wife, Merianne Myers, is board president of the North Coast Food Web, which runs the market during the summer months. At 4:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. every Thursday afternoon through early October, a pie walk gets underway for participants who buy a raffle ticket. Tom Myers’ booming voice directs them around a circle with numbers etched in the pavement with chalk as they hope to land on the right one when the music stops.

“I’m the loudest one,” Myers said, about his role as host. “I don’t do magic shows anymore, so this is fun for me, but it’s all for the pie walk. It’s a win-win situation.”

Myers happens to be well-known beyond the North Coast among magicians, clowns, jugglers and face-painters. In 1982, he and Merianne – performing as duo around the country – began a business selling supplies to entertainers like themselves. The two traveled around doing everything from street performances to picnics and local fairs. Their honeymoon, Myers said, even included time to perform on the street, passing a hat around for tips.

Myers is also known for inventing a pump in 1985 that is used by performers for quickly blowing up stretch balloons used for creating animals and objects for kids. Myers and his wife traveled around the country doing lectures and workshops.

“We spent eight years on the road going around teaching people how to do it at clown and magic conventions ,” he said.

T Myers Magic Inc. is now a mail order business and online at tmyers.com. Myers has since sold the Austin, Texas-based company and is retired along with Merianne. Myers said they are both happy to be on the North Coast and spending their time in one place.

“This is beautiful,” said Myers. “I love it up here. I love the weather. I love the rain.”

Myers also manages a community garden in Warrenton. His main hobby, he said, is shooting pool and he belongs to three groups that play at places in Washington and in Seaside at the Relief Pitcher Tavern.

“We’re so happy to be here,” he said, about their home in Warrenton. “There’s a lot of characters up here and I’ve found a lot of friends.”

—Ted Shorack

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