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Hypnotic Dare

Ellsworth -- The outside world is fading, fading, pleasantly fading away, you hear a woman say.

The next thing you know you're in a deep state of relaxation and you're ready to indulge your imagination. You might go fishing or you might drive a racecar. You might even become a Martian.

Then snap, you're back to normal and you go back to your seat. You've just been a participant in Sami Dare's comic hypnotist show.

Dare -- a Red Wing resident for the past year, whose real name is Sarie Bohmbach -- is performing this weekend at the Pierce County Fair, including shows today at 12:30 p.m. and 3 p.m.

"I love hypnosis because I know its real," Dare told a crowd at the fair Friday. "And every show is different."

That's because her show involves audience participation and, of course, every audience is different.

Dare moved with her husband, Jim, to Red Wing from Minneapolis last year, but spends much of her summers traveling the country performing at various county fairs. And this summer has been her best, she said.

"I just feel like I'm hitting my stride now," she said.

Dare defines success by making sure her entire crowd is having fun, and she says her routine has been a hit all summer.

Dare's show involves her hypnotizing a group of audience members and then encouraging them to perform in various ways.

Friday, her volunteers pretended they were meeting celebrities, being pulled over by a cop and giving an excuse for speeding and even translating a Martian language. But Dare is quick to note that her performances don't involve embarrassing people.

Dare has been working as a comic hypnotist for 16 years. After seeing a hypnotist perform, she became so interested that she worked as his apprentice for a couple of years before striking out on her own. At that time there was a large demand for a female stage hypnotist, she said.

In the winter months, when the fair circuit is over, Dare works a lot of corporate gigs, and visits high schools and colleges. In the spring she performs at proms and graduation lock-ins.

"It keeps me busy all year long," she said.

Hypnosis can be used for more than entertainment, however, Dare says. She says it has the power to help people overcome obstacles, like smoking or overeating. She added that while it's not a magic cure, it is an effective tool.

"The subconscious mind is a very powerful thing," Dare said. "It can really boost your ability to succeed in life."

Dare is scheduled to do some work with Red Wing Community Education and Recreation this fall, she said. For more information about Dare call (612) 360-7859.