Welcome to Ring 211

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“The Whole is more than the sum of its Parts.” Aristotle, Metaphysica written circa 350 B.C.

Welcome to the Web site for Ring 211! Our aim is to offer a more informative, more interactive site to help everyone better promote our shared love of magic. We sincerely hope you will join us in this ongoing goal.


Our Next Meeting

Our next meeting will be November 27, the Fourth Monday as usual. We’ll meet at at Brann’s. Arrive at 7:15 pm starting time, or 6:00 pm for those wanting to eat dinner with friends.

Workshop: TBA

October 2017 Program: Hocus Pocus Table-hopping Round Robin

We’ll be looking for performers who would like to try out their walk-around routine for club members. Since many of us are performing tableside at Hocus Pocus, we don’t always get to see each other’s magic. EVERYONE intending to perform at Hocus Pocus is invited to first do their thing for fellow Ring 211 Members.

Please be prepared to do about five minutes at each of four to five tables.

Please contact Ron Carnell if you would like to perform or MC.

November 2017 – Ring 211 Flea Market & Auction. Stay tuned for more information on time and other details.

For more information and a map to Brann’s, please check the Events Page


Coming Soon!

Want to get ready for next month’s Magic Theme?

November 2017 – Ring 211 Flea Market & Auction

December 2017 – No Meeting

January 2018 – May the Force Be With You We’re looking for any trick or routine that depends on a force, i.e., a volunteer unknowingly makes a choice that has been dictated by the magician. This doesn’t necessarily have to be a playing card, of course. Other items can also be forced. Be creative! (HINT: Magician’s Choice, or Equivoque, is also a force.)

Complete list of all Monthly Magic Programs for 2018

Monthly Magic Programs for 2018

January 2018

May the Force Be With You

We’re looking for any trick or routine that depends on a force, i.e., a volunteer unknowingly makes a choice that has been dictated by the magician. This doesn’t necessarily have to be a playing card, of course. Other items can also be forced. Be creative! (HINT: Magician’s Choice, or Equivoque, is also a force.)

February 2018

A Tribute to Couples

Break out all those special effects you always save for Valentine’s Day. Anniversary Waltz is probably one of the most famous (and strongest) tricks designed for two people in a relationship, but it’s certainly not the only one. This month Ring 211 will celebrate the magic of, the magic about, and the magic for couples.

March 2018

Comedy Magic

Get ready to tickle your audience’s funny bones with a trick or routine designed to make them laugh. Cards, coins, silks, anything at all flies as long as it’s funny. And if you can amaze them at the end with some really strong magic, that works, too.

April 2018

Money Magic

With April 15 fast becoming a National Day of Mourning, it’s only natural that our April Program focus on our continuing love/hate relationship with MONEY. Your trick or routine can center on money, or address it only obliquely, but it should definitely bring out the cash at some point.

Note: We’re setting up a special Escrow Account for anyone who wants to burn a volunteer’s hundred dollar bill this year.

May 2018

Magic With a Message

EVERY magic trick tells a story, but some are clearly more explicit than others. Perform a trick or routine that delivers a message to your audience. Gospel magic certainly qualifies, but there are many other possibilities as well. Your message can be a serious one, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be.

June 2018

Magician In Trouble

It’s a common theme in magic, and one that audience’s always seem to enjoy. They love to see us stumble and prove we, too, are merely mortal. Perform a trick or routine where failure appears imminent — just before you turn it around and once again do the impossible.

July 2018

Mentalism or Mental Magic

Dust off those Zener cards and multiple-out envelopes, as you prepare yourself to utterly amaze your Ring 211 audience with a demonstration of your mental prowess. Telepathy, clairvoyance, telekinesis, it’s all fair game in July.

What’s the difference between Mentalism and Mental Magic? Mentalism can be too long and potentially boring because the performer wants us to believe he’s really psychic. Mental Magic is usually faster paced and more fun because we all know it’s just a trick. You can pick which one you want to do at July’s Ring meeting?

August 2018

Annual Picnic

September 2018

This Case is Open & Close

There are thousands of routines we can put into the middle of a show, but only a select few are strong enough to be Openers or Closers. Your Opening trick has to immediately grab their attention and set the tone for everything that follows, while your Closer needs to be powerful and memorable (because it WILL be the thing they remember the best). This month, we focus on the best of the best.

October 2018

Hocus Pocus Table-hopping Round Robin

We’ll be looking for performers who would like to try out their walk-around routine for club members. Since many of us are performing tableside at Hocus Pocus, we don’t always get to see each other’s magic. EVERYONE intending to perform at Hocus Pocus is invited to first do their thing for fellow Ring 211 Members.

Please be prepared to do about five minutes at each of four to five tables.

November 2018

Ring 211 Flea Market & Auction

December 2018

No Meeting

Ring 211 October 2017 Report

Our Ring President, Jeff Brodrick, presented the workshop, eighth in his series of Television Magic. He showed the following clips: Harry Blackstone, Sr, in a cereal commercial in 1957; Marvin Roy and Carol, 1960; Mac Ronay, French mime-magician, 1961; Rene’ Lavand on the Ed Sullivan Show, December 29, 1963, and then also on the Paul Daniel’s Christmas Show, 1987; and Jerry Lewis performing as Dunninger, spring 1989. These are very interesting clips. Magic sure has a strong history.

Tonight was Hocus Pocus Table-hopping Round Robin since our annual Hocus Pocus Party was a few days away. MagicBob Zoerman intrigued us with his revealing of Pi memorization and reveal. An audience member gave MagicBob the page number of the booklet he had which had a of listing the continuous digits of Pi. MagicBob could call out the digits. He even could have the person run a few digits off from anywhere on the page or any of the pages and then MagicBob continued calling the digits of Pi. Randy Baker displayed his Iraqi deck of playing cards. Bruce Wehr impressed us by having four aces moved up and down and turned over in the deck. Then he did a prediction using two decks, red and blue. Three prediction cards matched the three red cards left from the three piles. Gary Laundre’ gave us laughs with his revealing of the three and a half card from a spectators selection of a card from a die. Next he performed a wonderbar routine and the gem turned pink. Dave Bogdan enticed us with some palm reading. Jeff Brodrick had a card selected and his cell phone (Sirius) called out the name of the card. Steven Elkowitz dazzled us with a card prediction with Out of This World.

Another night of fun! Thanks to our performers. Remember to register for the I.B.M. 2018 Convention Grand Rapids! July 4 – 7! It is going to be Grand!

Ring 211 September 2017 Report

Our September workshop was presented by Jeff Brodrick. This was part 7 of “A History of Magic As Seen On Television.” He started out with a tribute to actor, director, and comedian, Jerry Lewis. On a long list of films, Jerry Lewis’ “The Geisha Boy” is likely his own tribute to magic and magicians. Jeff discussed the film’s plot and showed a couple of magical moments from it. See the Jerry Lewis Unauthorized site (jerrylewisunauthorized.com) for much more information. Following the Jerry Lewis tribute, Jeff showed part of the television program “This is Your Life, Harry Blackstone Sr.” This episode first aired March 9, 1960. This one is surely representative of a bygone era of magical greatness. We will stay tuned for even more television magic in the future. Big Thanks Jeff.

Tonight’s program was described as a “spook night.” and written on the club’s web site as “Something Wicked This Way Comes — With Halloween just around the corner, it’s time to bring out the spooky stuff, the magic routines guaranteed to raise hairs on the back of your audience’s neck. Jason and Freddy Krueger can step aside and make room for Ring 211’s seriously scary sleight of hand.” Marc Denton was our first perfomer and chilled us with a card trick in which the victims find their killers. Jeff Brodrick performed a variation of Ron Frost’s “Colorful Choice.” It involved color coded skulls. When a number thought of by the spectator was called out, the color of their number matched the color of the skull Jeff had earlier predicted they would match. MagicBob Zoerman spooked us by having a miniature bone rise in the palm of his hand. Then he comforted us with the explanation of “The Valley of Dry Bones” as focused in Ezekiel 37 from the Bible. Julian, five-year old grandson of Randy Baker, successfully used the finger chopper on P. J. Weber . . . and he had us laughing with his witty patter. The grandpa followed by unlocking a rubber band from a paddle lock using SuZie Zoerman’s birthdate as a code. He also amused us with a hopping rubber band between his fingers and “rubber band glorpy.” Wayne Ramsdell put the final creeping on us by displaying a flower box of skulls and in which he had appear out of a bag with a skull emblem, many bones and skeleton parts.

Another night of magic a fun. Thanks to the performers. Thanks to Jeff Brodrick for his contribution to this report. Reminder to all to register for the I.B.M. 2018 Convention Grand Rapids! July 4 – 7. Register now to avoid the final tier level increase! Going to be Grand! Details on the I.B.M. web site, magician.org.

Ring 211 August 2017 Report

In August, we do not have either a board meeting nor a regular meeting because we have our annual picnic. Once again, it was held at Dr. Jack Vander Wal’s back yard which blends into Crystal Lake. Members, their friends, and family members arrived just past 2 PM on Sunday, August 20, which happened to be a beautiful sunny day. Members brought salads and desserts. The club furnished the dinnerware, soft drinks, burgers, and hot dogs. Those who attended chatted among each other about their summer activities, the latest on the magic scene, and a few magi performed a close-up trick or two. Jennifer Elkowitz and her sons Steven and Robert cast their fishing poles upon the lake and caught many. In fact, Robert beat Gary Oisten’s record of a fourteen inch Bass. Randy Vander Wal grilled the burgers and hot dogs. Jesse Shira assisted in the grilling and in the serving. The food was delightful and enjoyed by all. After the meal, an impromptu show was put on.

P. J. Weber opened the show with an impressive ESP symbol prediction. There was a free will choice on three matching symbols. Randy Vander Wal presented Jokers Are Wild. MagicBob Zoerman performed a thought of number and card routine using Bill and Julie Rasmussen. Gil Scott amazed us with a mystery box. The chosen card appeared inside the box. Dennis Favreau performed to music a smooth cut and restored rope routine involving knots and moving ends which included a Professor’s Nightmare. Hank Slaghter humored us with his patter as he correctly revealed three chosen cards selected from Steven Elkowitz, his brother Robert, and Michele Parkes. Wayne Ramsdell dazzled us with a card prediction and revelation routine from Duane Laflin. Steven Elkowitz showed a little flashiness by having one card among three flip over and then further enticed us by having that card’s back change color. Christian Rasmussen closed the show with a nice zombie routine.

As of this writing, PIP June Horowitz has will be turning 104 years young! Happy Birthday June!

Special note: I thank P. J. Weber for encouraging a group prayer lead by MagicBob Zoerman for my father, Dr. Jack Vander Wal, who at the time of the picnic had to be brought into emergency at a local hospital. Unfortunately, my dad passed a few weeks later and entered the Pearly Gates of Heaven to join other magi who have passed and are sure performing magic tricks there! He was a chartered member and loved Ring 211. He has allowed his back yard to be enjoyed for Ring 211 picnics ever since the mid 1990s. Thank you dad. A Broken Wand notice on him has been sent in and may be in this issue.

Once again, it was a great fun time at this picnic. Thanks to all who came and also for bringing their edibles. Hocus Pocus Party is Saturday, November 4. It is the 31st edition. All details on our web site. Also, it is highly recommended to register for the I.B.M. 2018 Convention in Grand Rapids! Dates are July 4 – 7. Lance Burton Teen Seminar is July 3 and 4. Lance says that this convention will be GRAND! All details at magician.org under the convention tab.

Broken Wand Notice — Dr. Jack Vander Wal

Dr. Jack Vander Wal passed away on August 26, 2017. He was a charter member of Ring 211 — The June Horowitz/John deVries Magic Club in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He enjoyed magic and the many magic friendships he made over his life. He caught the “magic bug” around eight years old. His father came home with a magic trick from staying in a hotel in Holland, Michigan (His dad worked for the Heinz Company and sold soup to supermarkets. — Had to stay over one time because of gas rationing during WWII.) This may have been the one which caught his first interest. Later, magic tricks were brought home from Abbott’s Magic and Manufacturing Company from his father. This lead to trips to Colon, Michigan. Percy Abbott, himself, taught my father, both his version of the Egg Bag and the Linking Rings (eight rings). My father then would attend the Abbott Magic Get Togethers. My father and mother’s honeymoon was the Abbott Magic Get Together in 1958. He and she attended many. Then he took the family in 1983. He and I then went continuously since 1991. For a good many of those years up to my mom’s passing in 2001, my younger brother and her would join us. Since 2007, my nephew who also caught the “magic bug,” Jesse Shira, joined “Pa Pa Wizard” and me at the Get Togethers.

My dad met the Late Earl Ray Wilcox through his father (when his father later was in the restaurant business as well as Earl). This lead to joining the local magic club in 1969 and being part the club as it became a Ring. He held every office, except for Treasurer. He was the Ring President five times, was the Ring Scribe back in the early years, received the most awards presented by the Ring, offered many a time to perform at club meetings, for a long time was the Workshop Chairman, played the organ for all fourteen Ring 211’s Annual Installation Banquet & Shows and the first few of Ring 211’s Annual Hocus Pocus Parties. Dr. Jack performed an act on the cabaret show of the first twenty-two Annual Hocus Pocus Parties. He performed his close-up at each of the fourteen Annual Installation Banquet & Shows and strolling close-up at each of the past thirty Annual Hocus Pocus Parties. When the club held its board meetings at members’ homes, he volunteered his home. Many great magi presented lectures for the club in his basement known as the “magic cellar” from the 1970s to the late 1990s. Since, the mid 1990s, he offered his back yard for the annual club picnics. He was also a member of the Society of American Magicians in the 1970s to the mid 1980s. He volunteered to sell ads in the S.A.M. 1983 Convention Program when the S.A.M. held their convention in Grand Rapids. He also was an honorary member of the club known as a “hall of famer.” Just recently, in May, he was inducted into the Michigan Magic Day Hall of Fame at this year’s Michigan Magic Day. He was an Order of Merlin Shield and held I.B.M. number 23507.

In the seventies his wife was his assistant and they performed Abbott Magic illusions such as the Temple of Benares and the Zig Zag Lady as part of his banquet show. This act was also featured on one or two of the Installation Banquet & Shows. In fact, he even was performing these two plus the Sword Basket with an assistant for a few Ring 211 events in the mid 2000s.

He was my main mentor in magic. I would not know any other magician nor even be part of this wonder art known as the performance art of magic, if it was not for him. I am very thankful. Thank you, Dad! He will miss the I.B.M. convention in 2018 when it comes to his home town . . . no, he will just have view from above! A Broken Wand Ceremony was presented by Gil Scott and Jeff Brodrick with the wand being painted and prepared by Bill and Julie Rasmussen.

Full Obituary as follows:

Vander Wal, A. Jack. Andrew “Jack” Vander Wal, 82, of Jenison, MI, went to be with his Living Savior and reunite with his beloved wife on August 26, 2017. Jack was a faithfully devoted husband, father, and Christian who had many talents, a zest for life, and a propensity to make others laugh. Jack was born on September 3, 1934 in Grand Rapids, MI. He graduated from Grand Rapids Christian High School (1952), Calvin College (1956), and the University of Michigan School of Dentistry (1959). He married the love of his life, his “Continuous Joy,” in 1958 and they had 5 children across 3 decades, or as he liked to say, “one a decade.” Jack was passionate about and continuously pursued excellence in dentistry, magic, and accompaniment on the piano and organ in church every Sunday. Jack cherished his work as a dentist, practicing 55 years and never officially retiring but transitioning to part time on a mobile unit that served those in elder and foster care communities. Always learning, he took pride in offering specialized services beyond that of general dentistry. Perhaps what he enjoyed most though, were the friendships he made over the years with his assistants and office staff who he affectionately called his “office girls,” relationships he continued up to his passing. As a young boy, Jack became interested in magic and was known to reward neighborhood kids with a magic trick if they could show they didn’t have any cavities (after checking their teeth with his mother’s knitting needles). When he was 12, Jack had his first paid show and has received numerous awards over the years, most recently being inducted into the Michigan Magic Day Hall of Fame. Jack was a founding member of Ring 211 of the International Brotherhood of Magicians and held various roles in the “magic club,” still actively participating until his death. “Happy Jack,” as his son Randy called him, made magic a family affair, taking pride in teaching this passion to Randy and grandsons Jesse and Joshua. Jack was equally passionate about playing music, a talent that also began at a young age and continued throughout his life. He began piano lessons when he was 9 and from junior high through college, played the drums in the school band. He had a long history of playing for church functions, weddings, and funerals, but was the most fulfilled on a weekly basis in worship with his church community playing either the piano or organ. Jack’s commitment often included music at 3 Sunday services and he was well known for his thunderous rendition of “Onward Christian Soldiers” where it was common for fellow congregants to stop him after the service to offer their amazement. Family members are heartbroken to lose their “Jack” of all trades but are grateful for their time with him on earth, and are at peace that he is no longer in pain. Jack is preceded in death by his parents, Gerald and Evelyn, and his wife of 43 years, C.J. He is survived by his children Jamie (Jerry) Shira, Randy Vander Wal, Chellie (Karl) Schmitz, Bonnie (Karen) Vander Wal, & Jordie Vander Wal; grandchildren Jozie (Jay) Hayes, Gracey, Jesse, & Zion Shira; Joshua, Chaiah, Bekah, & Amira Schmitz. He is also survived by his sister Billie (Rudy) Prins and brother Jerry (Sue) Vander Wal, as well as nieces, nephews, and cousins. The family is looking forward to welcoming others to celebrate in Jack’s memory on Thursday, August 31 from 2 – 5pm and 6 – 9pm, with a Broken Wand ceremony beginning at 8:30pm at Matthysse-Kuiper-DeGraaf Funeral Home (Grandville) 4145 Chicago Dr. SW. Funeral service will be held on Friday, September 1 at 1pm with the family greeting visitors an hour before at New Community Church, 2340 Dean Lake Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49505. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the ALS Association of West Michigan in honor of Jack’s wife, C.J., who succumbed to the disease in 2001. Condolences may be sent online at www.mkdfuneralhome.com.

Ring Event: Trevor Duffy Lectures to Ring 211

On Sunday, July 16, the day after the I.B.M./S.A.M. Combined Convention ended in which Trevor had a dealer booth, he began his U.S. lecture tour and Grand Rapids was his first stop.

Trevor Duffy is a professional magician and innovator of magic, who has performed in the United States, England, Australia, parts of Africa and now resides in Johannesburg, South Africa. He has received Gold medal awards in South African National championships. In 2002, he won a Gold medal in the category of invention, for his and Denton Cooley’s card trick, Minds in Focus and later in the year, placed second place in the Australian I.B.M. Close-up competition.

Ring 211 member Bill Rasmussen briefs us what Trevor’s lecture was all about in the below paragraphs.

He performed many effects such as: Double Your Money. Here he took a $5 bill from an audience member and right before us in his hands he folded it into a $10 bill and returned it to the audience member, handing it back with the comment that he learned early in life that “it is better to give than to receive.” Nice routine, very understandable, without any noticeable props.

Signed Card to Both Pockets. Here he had me select a card at random, sign it, and hand it to him. Within a few moves, he displayed that it was in his “right” trouser pocket! Then, after some more moves, it vanished! He removed the card from his “right” pocket and, surprisingly, it was a different, unsigned card! What happened to “my” card? Astonishingly, he removed a card from his “left” front trouser pocket and it was “my” signed card! Whew!

Invisible Deck. I have seen this trick performed many times by others and, in fact, Christian and I perform it sometimes. But, Trevor has a completely different twist to the trick. He starts with his hands empty. And I mean completely empty! Then, he goes through the “normal” routine of “throwing the invisible deck” out to a spectator having the spectator doing the “normal” twists and turns of “turning over” one of the cards, returning the card to the “invisible deck,” and throwing the deck back to Trevor. Then, out of nowhere, the deck turns “visible” in his hand! Astonishing! Then, after the revelation of the reversed card (the spectators selected and reversed card), he is able to make the deck vanish again, right before our very eyes! Incredible. Besides these three gems, he demonstrated other great tricks, as well. One of the great feats was his ability to make a deck of cards (and I mean an “ungaffed deck of cards”) smoke right in his hand before us “on his command!” I was mystified! At the end of the show I spent $195 for his complete package. This package included his unique creation (which, by the way, he builds and sells) that makes any deck (or other object) smoke right in his hands!

As is usual with great lectures such as this, I went away broke. Quite a bit of magic by him!

This was a splendid lecture. We thank Trevor and recommend him to any club. We thank our lecture chair Dave Bogdan (bogsmagic@comcast.net) and Bill for submitting what happened. For more information and video visit these links: More info and video visit these links: http://trevorduffy.co.za/products-page and www.trevorduffy.co.za.