Magi-Fest to Ends 80 Year Run

Magic-Fest Logo

We received the sad news today.  This was one of the best conventions on the calendar.

Dear Friends:

The Columbus MAGI-FEST has had a great run of 80 years (81 conventions). And while we hoped to see the 100th, for now we’ve decided it’s time to retire the convention.

This decision did not come easily; there were several factors. The Redcoats have a strong friendship—we are like a second family to each other. We’ve all watched our kids (and even some grandkids) grow up at MAGI-FEST, and we thank you for being a part of their lives and for the wonder that we and they got to experience these many years. We finished the convention in the black, able to pay all our bills and refund money to those who pre-registered for 2013.

While we wanted to have our 82nd convention in 2013, we decided to change those plans after further reflection. We see some potential headwinds that could affect the quality and financial health of future conventions. These include:

Long-time, loyal attendees who are aging out faster than younger registrants are coming in

The downturn in the economy over the past few years

Financial pressure on the convention due to increasing costs and insurance requirements, while keeping registration, food, and lodging costs affordable to attendees

We are all very sad to retire MAGI-FEST, but we want to do so on our terms as a quality, family-friendly convention, at an affordable price, that was fair to all who participated.

We also wish to thank our wonderful staff: Tony Dolciato, Randal Fath, Mike Heniken, Steven Kline, the Krech kids, Glenn Mackie, Red Penley, and Mike Sanderson. We appreciate their tireless dedication and support more than they know. They are the ones who made it happen at “show time”.

Thank you again for all your support, love, and friendship for these many years. We hope our paths will cross again in the future and that perhaps we’ll see many of you at other magic-related events.

With warmest regards,

The Board of Directors of the Columbus Magic Club, Inc.

IBM 83rd Convention Kicks Off

Inside Magic Image of IBM Convention LogoThe headline to this post took about seven hours to work, market-test, evaluate, re-focus, right-size and streamline.  Assuming, arguendo, we are paid $700.00 per hour for our legal work, the article has cost close to $5,600.00 already.  (Yes, we know seven hours times $700.00 per hour is $4,900.00 but we tend to round up in our billing so we can afford to attend fine conventions and kill nearly eight hours (practically eight hours) writing just the headline).

And that really is the point of this post and the convention.  Lots of preparation to make things look incredibly normal.  Sitting here in the little alcove off the wonderfully appointed main lobby at the Dallas Sheraton, we have a prime seat (or so we have been told by sailors the world ’round) for the comings and goings of our magic brethren and cistern as they prepare to perform mysterious things in a manner so well-rehearsed that it looks normal, ordinary.

In a few hours, these common looking folk with be adorned in fine clothes packed with loads of animal, vegetable and silk that would be sufficient to inhibit the range of movement of even a ballet star and yet move smoothly through routines so well-rehearsed that they look spontaneous and fresh.

We think it was Harry Houdini who once observed that “99 percent of magic is normal but the trick is to make it look 100 percent.”

This has been a trying year for the economy, for families, for the world.  The acts planned and readied for this week will not be witnessed by even a slim fraction of the world and yet the positive energy released after years of rehearsal and refinement will have a demonstrable, real effect.  Not merely a psychic or ethereal augmentation of the human spirit that cannot be measured by “non-believers” but a concrete uplifting of attendees spirit, aspirations, and intentions.

The bonds formed and re-affirmed here may or may not hold longer than the convention’s duration,  but the experience will surely lower the guard of participants; allowing them to be more aware and open to forming such friendships in the future.  Young people will learn, more experienced will teach, and the dynamic shift that effortlessly propels our art through history intensifies.

This is a special place at a special time.

You can check out the IBM official coverage here:http://www.magician.org/

Follow the official IBM Twitter Feed at www.twitter.com/ibmconvention.

And read the Inside Magic Unofficial Twitter Coverage by following @insidemagic or checking out the unofficial convention hash tag #IBM_Magic