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 October meeting will be the Fourth Monday on the 27nd at Brann’s. Arrive at 7:15 pm starting time, or 6:00 pm for those wanting to eat dinner with friends.

Workshop: Magic Web Sites – Part 2 by Ron Carnell

October 2014 Program – Kiddie’s Corner Perform a suitable routine for those under the age of eight years old. Contact Peter Stobie @ peterstobie@gmail.com if interested!

If you would like to MC future programs, please contact Pete at peterstobie@gmail.com.

Upcoming Programs.

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

Coming Soon!

Friday November 21st WAYNE HOUCHIN 7:30 at Brann’s

flyer01-smallTickets for Hocus Pocus are now available (and going fast). Tickets are still $20.00.

Click small picture to see full-size flyer. Please print off a few and pass them around to friends and family. We also have a full-size PDF available for printing.


Ring 211 September 2014 Report

Ron Carnell presented our September workshop. It was on magic web sites. Ron creates web sites and has extensive knowledge in this field. He also is the web master of our club’s web site. For detailed information, visit Better Magic Sites.

He talked about “building a solid foundation” (Act 1), “marketing” (Act 2), and “sales” (Act 3). Each of these acts have an opener, middle, and a closer of what one needs to have for a successful web site. Next month will be part two of this huge topic. We thank Ron for sharing this information.

Tonight was Round Robin Night. Gil Scott, Ron Carnell, Steven Elkowitz, and MagicBob Zoerman strolled among four tables.

Gil Scott amazed us with by having the drawing of a deck of cards on the back of a deck of cards display the chosen card to rise. Next, he amused with a sponge ball routine which included multiplying balls and “two in one hand and one in pocket” scenario. A color changing card routine involving the chosen card to switch with his card in an Altoid box and a chop cup routine with a bigger ball finish concluded his act.

Ron Carnell had a card selected, lost in the deck, and shuffled inverting faces and backs, and somehow the deck magically changed into new deck order except for the chosen card. He followed with two more card routines. One involved a written prediction on back of the chosen card and the other involved two cards matching.

Steven Elkowitz (one of our youth members) impressed us with an “Out of this World” card routine, an ambitious card routine which had the card finally appear from his mouth, and having a chosen card be revealed by feeling one’s pulse.

MagicBob Zoerman amused us with a fork suspension in hand, intrigued us with a penetration of two bills through each other, and followed with a sugar packet in hand vanish and his famous vanish of a coin into a mini character nun effect.

We thank our performers for sharing some magic and fun. June Horowitz also informed the club a little about the Jewish holiday Rosh Hashana (The Jewish New Year). She reminded us that David Copperfield, Max Maven, David Blain, Malini, Harry Houdini, and Uri Geller were not just all great magicians but happened to be Jewish. Visit us on our web site.

Photo Gallery
Photos by Michele Parkes

Ring Event: Barry Mitchell & Karl Hein Lecture

In September both Barry Mitchell and Karl Hein lectured to Ring 211. Barry was in early September followed by Karl in late September.

Barry MitchellBarry Mitchell was formerly a street magician in the New Orleans French Quarter. He was formerly a regular opening act for country music stars and the featured comedian at Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede Dinner Attraction. He was formerly the Oreo Magician for the Southeast, a lecturer at the world famous Magic Castle in Hollywood, and the Magic Circle in London. He has formerly performed in almost every state plus England, Denmark, Australia, and the Bahamas. He has formerly invented magic tricks, written stories, books, and DVDs. He has formerly presented children’s ministry programs such as Upward, VBS, Awana, and Kid’s crusades in churches all over the United States. He has formerly spoken for large corporations, public schools, and civic organizations. All this former experience means he just can’t keep a job. Actually, he has been successfully unemployed as a humorist and children’s entertainer for over three decades. View more at www.barrymitchell.com. Also search “Barry Mitchell” on Google and watch You Tube videos of his magic.

The lecture was his “Think Different Magic Tour” His advertising for this lecture states the following:

“Get ready to think different about your magic. Look into the creative mind of Barry Mitchell for his unique ideas with children’s and family entertainment. Whether you are a beginner or a full time pro YOU WILL FIND USEABLE TECHNIQUES AND MAGIC here. Included are: Think Different effects for sponge magic, silk magic, and simple card magic. It’s all part of a fun and funny presentation that won’t just inform you but it will entertain you. Barry is also known for dollar store creativity and he will always share effects you can make right off the shelves for your store. You need to know this isn’t a card or packet trick lecture. There will be no complicated sleight of hand. This lecture is a study in thinking differently and simply and successfully ‘entertaining’ a family audience with magic. Magicians and clowns will equally love it. Even if you’re a dedicated ‘card trick only’ hobbyist you’ll still learn, laugh, and be entertained.”

He stressed to “play” with one’s magic so “ideas” will happen. He also creates and dyes his own line of silks.

Correction from Barry Mitchell: The silks I sell are Wonder Imagery. The ones with my name on them are my design but made by Wonder Imagery. If you would like to learn more about the silks go to www.wonderimagery.com or my site is www.barrymitchellproducts.com

Highlights of his lecture were:

  • Fluffy the Frog, a silk routine involving a fly and a pod
  • Smiles, multi-production of sponge balls known as “smilemakers” out of a bag along with an appearing cane
  • Pop-Up Trash Can which produced sponge stars and balls and even jumbo balls
  • A production of bags from a bag which also included productions of a ball, a silk streamer, the Dream Bag, and an appearing wand
  • Bucket of Balls which he uses nesting cups by Fisher Price
  • Heart Attack, a sponge heart routine with many scripts available
  • Caterpillar to Butterfly, a silk routine
  • Silk hand To Silk Eye
  • A card vent gag routine which involved a multi-card selection, a comic Axtell mic prop, and a spectator
  • Bag of WOW 2.0, a WOW silk vanish to a production of a larger WOW silk using his DIY Bag
  • Jay Rumple’s What About The Fish routine
  • Magic Box
  • Mother Of All Diamonds

Barry had a great selection of his magic available for sale which included Pole Control, Pop Up Production, No Bleed Balls, and much more. DVD’s available were Bag O WOW, Think Different 3, Target WOW, DUH (vol 1 & 2), Comedy Magic 101, Truth & Treasures, Magic of Thinking Creativity (vol 1 & 2), and The ABC’s of Children’s Magic.

Ring 211 enjoyed Barry’s lecture and recommends him to any club.

Karl HeinKarl Hein is known world-wide for his amazing card handling abilities. His Heinstein Shuffle is widely recognized as the best false riffle shuffle with a bridge ever invented. Ring 211′ers looking for original card sleights, flourishes, and entertaining routines developed by an experienced professional magician were quite impressed. Karl used many of his routines to teach basic and advanced moves and principles of magic and misdirection. More importantly, we learned how to “Go With the Flow” (his title for this lecture) as Karl provided alternate handlings to meet varying skill levels and explained how to change routines depending on one’s audience and conditions.

For our club members who are not interested much in card tricks, were pleased to know that Karl makes the majority of his income as a family entertainer under the stage name of Karl Koppertop (visit www.karlkoppertop.com, www.extremeballoonteam.com, www.karlhein.com). We were not going to miss out on learning Karl’s commercial routines with coins, ropes, bills, and cream filled goodies. Even more valuable were his thoughts on performing and his tips on how to make a six figure income performing family shows.

Highlights of his lecture were:

  • Heinsight – An open prediction with an impossible change and kicker ending with use of the Hoffsinger’s Spread Force
  • Heinstein’s Dream – A named selection is signed, folded, torn into pieces and restored. His handling allows the versatility of performing a flash restoration, piece by piece restoration, or a restoration in the spectator’s hand. Easy, clean, versatile, repeatable, minimal setup, no placing pieces in one’s hands or pockets, and the restored card can be given as a souvenir.
  • A magic square routine with a deck of cards — Karl demonstrated and explained his famous Heinstein Shuffle with tips and variations. This shuffle is in many of his card routines. He also showed the Charlet Shuffle, Zaro Shuffle, and a few others. He made reference to his DVD on false shuffles.
  • Don’t Play by the Rules – One of the best full deck story routines ever created.
  • My Favorite Opener — Karl’s favorite routine for the restaurant environment. This routine contained an amazing color changing deck sequence and a very baffling deck switch. The routine is segmented so that it can end at any point and still be a strong finish. It was also a great lesson in audience management, timing, and improvisation.
  • That Would be a Freaking Miracle – An easy to do three card selection that gets everyone involved and makes a spectator a hero. Just when one thinks it’s over, the kickers keep coming, such as the production of a bottle of Ketchup.
  • Heiny 500 – Karl’s variation of Patrick Page’s Easy Money and Greg Wilson’s Hundy 500.
  • Just Say Twinkie – a very entertaining, very strong, easy to do bill routine that makes sense.
  • Give Me Five – A quick trick using a little money that one will use all of the time, not just for fun but to also help increase tips in a very subtle manner.
  • Hein’s Catch Up — a six phase three fly coin routine using copper, silver, and brass coins.
  • Grandmother’s BLT — An easy to do sandwich effect that has made many top magicians feel that moment of astonishment they haven’t felt in years.

He concluded his lecture with a performance only of a Rubick’s Cube match and Three Degrees of Separation, a four card multi-selection in which the climax is the chosen cards are displayed by the fours of every suit and then in full deck order.

He had his lecture notes and many of his routines available for sale in DVD form plus Heinous Collection (vol 1, 2, and 3). We also recommend Karl to any club.

Photo Gallery
Photos by Pete Stobie

Ring 211 Honors Dr. Jack Vander Wal & Ray Bielecki

jackandrayOn Sunday, August 17, Ring 211 held its annual picnic. For this report see the Ring Reports section. At the conclusion of the picnic, Ring President Michele Parks recognized Dr. Jack Vander Wal and Ray Bielecki. Both of these two I.B.M. Order of Merlin Shield members were born the same year as the Great Harry Blackstone, Jr. At the time of the picnic, both Jack and Ray turn eighty years young within the next few weeks. Happy 80th from Ring 211!

Ring 211 August 2014 Report

On Sunday, August 17, Ring 211 held its annual picnic. Members, including their family and friends, began arriving shortly after 2 PM to Dr. Jack Vander Wal’s home in Jenison, Michigan. The picnic was in the backyard which connects to Crystal Lake. Members brought a dish to pass such as a salad or dessert. The club furnished the burgers, hot dogs, and tableware. Of course, P. J. and Tina Weber brought the watermelon. Gary Oisten once again attempted to break the record he set about four years ago, catching an eighteen inch bass. Many gathered around tables and socialized. Others demonstrated a few close-up wonders such as Gil Scott. Around 4 PM, the burgers and hot dogs were grilled and all enjoyed the food. An impromptu magic show followed.

P. J. Weber opened the show with his version of the Invisible Deck. Steven Elkowitz impressed us with a card transposition. Randy Vander Wal performed “Quote-A-Log” by Fred Moore. Gary Oisten dazzled us with a few card routines. One was a card selection and find, then a big card-little card matching prediction, and then the final one being a matching prediction by taking half the value — the three and half of club big prediction card. Dr. Jack Vander Wal presented Phil Goldstein’s “Shinkansen,” an impressive cards across routine. Vince Rosso followed by producing three silks from a rod and air balloon in bottle. Chuck Bennett closed the show with a gospel routine using three white feathered rings and three different color silks. The silks changed to the desired colored silk color with the finish being the three rings transforming into a large multi-color feathered ring.

What a fun time at this year’s picnic. A thanks to all who came and our performers. President Michele also recognized her uncle Ray Bielecki and our secretary Dr. Jack Vander Wal as both of these elderly youthful members turn eighty within the next few weeks. Wow! Ray and Jack each received a brownie dessert. Hocus Pocus Party is November 1 with headliner Stephen Bargatze. Check our web site for details.

Ring 211 July 2014 Report

The July workshop was presented by MagicBob Zoerman who happened to have his friend, Justin Raj, from Chennai, India. Justin was with Crusade for Christ for seventeen years and is now on his own tours throughout India. Justin aims to make his audiences laugh and enjoy his magical surprises. He says that some people of India view magicians as frightful and scary. So no haunting magic from him. MagicBob asked Justin many questions about himself and his focus in magic and Justin replied. Also, Justin performed a bunch of enticing magic. This included a silk streamer hand vanish and reappearance, a lengthy ribbon production, a ball and vase illusion in which a red silk turned into the red ball and in the vase was the red silk, a mini silk vanish in hand and the silk reappeared on a large playing card as colored PIPs, a water in glass suspension, a Professor’s Nightmare, a shrinking tissue which continued to move back and forth by an invisible hair and a wand, colored silks to a Blendo to a color streamer using a change bag, a knot magically untying on a rope, three silks being tied together and having the knots vanish, and a silk to cane. We enjoyed having Justin perform his magic. A thanks to both Justin and MagicBob.

Before the program for tonight, President Michelle presented the following with awards. Workshop of the Year was given to Gary Laundre’. Excellence in Close-Up was given to Gary Oisten. Excellence in Stage went to Peter Stobie. Outside Lecturer of the Year went to David Stone. The following received an award for their service to the club: Jerry & Kathy Herdegen, Peter Stobie, Dave Bogdan, and Ron Carnell.

Tonight was Bags of Fun with chairperson President Michelle Parkes. Magi had to perform a routine using a bag made of cloth, paper, etc. Jesse Shira was our first performer and placed a written letter inside a paper bag, blew air into the bag, popped it, and the ink on the letter had vanished. Next, he had the assistance of Gary Laundre’ in a prediction routine. Seven bags, the “bag of mystery,” and the prediction envelope were the items of interest. By a hilarious process of elimination of the number of bags, the one chosen by Gary matched the prediction. The prize was a piece of gum. Dr. Jack Vander Wal presented Lollipop by Carroll Baker. Randy Vander Wal had three dirty cloths, a clothes line, and pins placed in a bag. It was shook up and down by Cindy Bennett and then torn open with the three cloths clean hanging on the clothes line. Leo Peters had a husband and wife assist him. The husband named a color and the wife was able to reach into a bag full of colored balls and pull out the named colored ball many a time. Next, Leo had three ropes placed in a bag, they became tied together, and then the knots vanished. Gil Scott closed the show with his version of Inferno by Joshua Jay.

Another night of magic and fun. We thank all our performers. Hocus Pocus Party, the 28th edition will take place Saturday, November 1. The Dynamic Comedy Duo of Stephen Bargatze and Rick Merrill will be the prime feature. Check out the information on the club’s web site, ring211.org.

Ring 211 June 2014 Report

Brad Lancaster presented our June workshop and his topic was “Using Music In Magic.” Points stressed were one should have the music be transformational like in the movies, one’s collection of music in the show should be a unified collection and not sporadic, one should carefully plan music so as to have the music not draw away people from the magic but to the magic, one should use instrumental music and be sure to have the magic set the lyrics, and one should fit the music to the magic or edit the music to the routine. He performed his Sidewalk Shuffle routine and also a color changing plume routine both with patter and music as to demonstrate how the music enhanced each routine. He also answered a few questions on royalty-free music, on using an I-Pod for storing your music lists, and on speaker systems. He also advised one to use people that have “an ear” for music. We thank Brad for this much informative workshop.

Tonight was Magic & Music. One had to perform a routine to music. MagicBob Zoerman opened the show by performing the Russian Rings. He dedicated this to one of his magic friends, Randy Craven, who has been battling a health concern. Next, he showed us a science concept on “conservation of angular momentum” using a ceramic egg on a string and how it wraps around a wooden cross without smashing to the floor. Dennis Favreau presented a rope routine which included cutting and restoring, no ends, and a Professor’s Nightmare. He concluded his act with a linking ring routine using two rings leading up to eight rings. Brad Lancaster dazzled us with a four ace production from a deck of cards and then four piles each including an ace had the ace vanish, except for the last pile now ended up having all four aces. P. J. Weber explained what music he uses for his mouth coil to dove production, performed to music the Growing Head Illusion and the Rubick’s Cube Puzzle, and concluded his segment by explaining what music he uses with his linking ring routine. Gary Laundre’ was an added act tonight. He had no music so he hummed and “mouthed” the music to a three coin transposition and Hopping Halves.

Another night of magic, fun, and fellowship was had. We thank our program chair Peter Stobie and all who performed.