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 April 23, 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

April 2018 Program: 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.

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

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?

April 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.

Complete list of all Monthly Magic Programs for 2018

May 12 Abbott’s Hank Moorehouse Flea Market 2018

The Flea Market runs from 9am to 1pm, with the auction starting at noon. More information about getting your own booth at http://www.abbottmagic.com/2018-Sellers-Booth-at-the-May-12th-Flea-Market-Auction-2018fleamarket.htm

May 18-19 The 49th Annual Michigan Magic Day

Hosted by John Sterlini (Sterlini Magic) and Carl Thorton (Five Star Pizza), MMD 2018 is being held in Colon this year. The Night-Before Party is Friday evening and will be held at the American Legion, with lectures, close-up show, and evening show being held on Saturday. More information is (or will soon be) available at http://michiganmagicday2018.com/

July 4 – 7 The International Brotherhood of Magicians Annual Convention Grand Rapids!

Smashing talent from Las Vegas, throughout the U.S. and internationally comes to Grand Rapids! The magic will be GRAND! Certainly, the hotel is . . . the convention hotel is the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel! Invite your family and friends to one or all three of the public nightly shows at the astonishing vaudevillian Civic Theatre! To see the talent line-up and all the details, visit www.magician.org/convention.

Ring 211 March 2018 Report

Brad Lancaster, our workshop chairperson, presented the March workshop. He performed and then explained (with having us do a “hands on”) three simple magic routines which baffle regular audiences. The first was having a rubber band jump between fingers (Jumping Rubberband of Mystery). The next was the Jumping Four Coin Trick from hand to hand. Gary Laundre’ also provided an additional ending. The last routine was having the four aces appear as the top card of four piles after shuffles and cuts. Brad also reminded us that the performer must “sell yourself” within the presentation. Brad also kindly encouraged three members to perform one of the tricks on tonight’s program.

Tonight was Comedy Magic. Gary Laundre’ was the first performer. He opened with a laugh track gag and then a Campbell’s can applause. He had Jennifer Elkowitz join him with his Tipsy Turvy Bottles in which a bouquet of flowers were produced. After a souvenir ring gag, he had Steven Elkowitz assist him in baking a cake. The ingredients were mixed in a cup upside down on Steven’s head. The end result was a flower produced from the cup since they forgot to use flour. Sara Wehr impressed us with the rubber band trick from the workshop. Marc Denton presented a hilarious mind-reading prediction using cards with verbs. Bob Panlener amazed us with three rubber band penetrations with the assistance of Michele Parkes. Diane Cloutier astonished us with the rubber band trick from the workshop. Randy Vander Wal performed the MisMade Bunny Silk routine (Laflin). Hank Slagter intrigued us by magically putting a knot within a rope without letting go of each end of the rope. Steven Elkowitz dazzled us with his presentation of the four ace trick (using the kings) from the workshop.

Another night of magic and fun was had. We thank all the performers. Reminder: The I.B.M. Convention is being billed as “The Greatest Magic Convention of 2018.” Twenty smashing performers! Unbelievable Evening Shows! Lance Burton Teen Seminar with Jeff McBride and Dr. Lawrence Hass! Stage and Close-Up Contests with cash prizes! World Class Dealers! Eleven Outstanding Lectures! The Legions of Comedy Show! Special “The Amazing Jonathan” Late Night Show! Fireworks after the final show — over the Grand River! July 4 – 7! Amway Grand Plaza Hotel! Grand Rapids! Attractive and walk-able downtown! Eight excaliburish bars/lounges/restaurants in the hotel, over 25 eateries/bars between the hotel and theater! Beer City! Enjoy some craft beer! Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum! Grand Rapids Public, Children’s, and Art Museums! John Ball Zoo! A Francis Menotti favorite: Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park! Register at www.magician.org/convention. Convention schedule is posted. More about Grand Rapids at www.experiencegr.com. PIP June Horowitz and Ring 211 invite all magi to our grand city!

Ring 211 February 2018 Report

Brad Lancaster presented our February workshop. His topic was on thumb tip techniques. Brad showed us a metal and cream color thumb tip he had which dates back to 1968. He displayed an array of thumb tips and prefers to use plastic and vinyl. He informed that the best fit for a thumb tip is when it fits right above the knuckle so there is enough space to vanish items. He emphasized the key to success in using a thumb tip is “naturalness.” Whenever one show the hands empty, always point the thumb tip directly at the spectator and do this briefly. Do not show the the hand with the thumb tip as a challenge. He gave examples of this by demonstrating what he calls “the wave,” “the in the face point,” and “the open palm display.” Also, do not hold up your hands as if in a robbery pose — instant giveaway. For the silk vanish, he demonstrated four methods of getting the thumb tip into the fist: closed fist method, left thumb method, right thumb method, and stroke method. Next, he demonstrated three methods of stealing the thumb tip from the fist: the tuck principle, the pivot principle, and the tail principle. He advises to always add theater. One is going to do a minor miracle, so treat it as such. He continued by showing us how to show the hand with the thumb tip empty and making the silk reappear by the “look and grab” and “point and grab” methods. We thank Brad for the workshop. Look for some interesting upcoming workshops. Brad is now our workshop chair. We thank Charles Bennett for his time as the chair. He is recuperating from a fall.

Tonight the program was titled “A Tribute To Couples” with Ron Carnell as the emcee. Dennis Favreau opened the show with his cocoa beans, sugar, and tin foil in one hand . . . add heat . . . and two Hershey Kiss candies is the result. He continued with Napkin to Rose (Michael Mode) and then with Nancy Greiner presented a duo cut and restored paper heart routine in which exchange corners matched the restored paper hearts. MagicBob Zoerman illuminated us with a prediction involving a phone note book of a girl friend from his youth days. His prediciton matched with a comic picture. Jeff Brodrick followed with a card prediction involving Bruce and Sara Wehr. Next, Marc Denton chose three cards from a choice of two decks, one blue and one red. Jeff matched the cards chosen from the other deck. April Thompson (daughter of Steven) produced balloons from a bag, made a heart out of one of them, and vanished the rest. Very well done . . . she stole our hearts. Nancy Greiner (new member) chilled us with her act as being “Chi Chi” and performing another torn and restored paper heart routine and Dennis Favreau was involved again in this one as the disrespectful lover. Ron Carnell closed the show with a performance on the power of suggestion. He had MagicBob Zoerman and his wife SuZie challenge each other. Somehow by the power of suggestion (magic?) SuZie could maintain her arm held up strong, MagicBob could not. SuZie could bend a nail, MagicBob could not. SuZie could break a thread and tear a slip of paper. Could MagiBob? No.

Another night of magic and fun was had. We thank all the performers. Reminder: The I.B.M. Convention is being billed as “The Greatest Magic Convention of 2018.” Twenty smashing performers! Unbelievable Evening Shows! Stage and Close-Up contests with cash prizes! World Class Dealers! Eleven Outstanding Lectures! The Legions of Comedy Show! Special “The Amazing Jonathan” Late Night Show! Fireworks after the final show — over the Grand River! July 4 – 7! Amway Grand Plaza Hotel! Grand Rapids! Attractive and walk-able downtown! Eight excaliburish bars/lounges/restaurants in the hotel, over 25 eateries/bars between the hotel and theater! Beer City! Enjoy some craft beer! Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum! Grand Rapids Public, Children’s, and Art Museums! John Ball Zoo! A Francis Menotti favorite: Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park! Register at www.magician.org/convention. More about Grand Rapids at www.experiencegr.com. PIP June Horowitz and Ring 211 invite all magi to our grand city!

Ring 211 January 2018 Report

IMG_6851Gil Scott presented our January workshop. One of the card effects he showed he wanted to reinforce into us to look at improving a flaw. One could improve the card trick by having a card reading “off by one” being produced. The second card effect dealt with having two cards being faced up after cutting the deck. The third involved guessing the number of cards, adding face up cards to one of the piles, and having the whole deck changing to being face-up. He also shared his thoughts on patter and scripting. He demonstrated the pass, the top change, and the double lift. He reminded us to take advantage of normal body movements when doing a card move and emphasized that the big move covers the small move (card move or sleight). Thanks Gil.

Tonight the program theme was “May the Force Be With You” with our program chair Ron Carnell. Magi could perform a trick or routine in which a force was involved. Marc Denton performed a card trick which challenged the spectator to avoid choosing the “death card.” The spectator was spared by a note which was next to the death card. Brad Lancaster impressed us with a card selection routine in which he spelled to the card and the rest of the selection was the four aces. Welcome back Joe Bennett from Paw Paw, Michigan! He dazzled us with a card routine in which the chosen card happened to be the only red back card in a blue back deck. Gil Scott intrigued us with a psychic card routine which involved two selections. Randy Vander Wal performed a favorite of his, Las Vegas Glasses (Karrell Fox, Dick Stoner). Jeff Brodrick enlightened us with a coin prediction involving many pennies with different dates. His prediction of the date matched. Hank Slagter impressed us by matching the chosen card with the same card from another deck. Steven Elkowitz “wowed” us by having the chosen card be revealed on his smart phone. The back of the card was shown and it turned around to reveal the selection. Ron Carnell thrilled us with four routines: a version of Tossed Out Deck, a “Scrabble-like” prediction in which he got the letter and the rest of the letters spelled out the revealed card selected, matching a chosen card by NLP (neuro-linguistic programming technique), and a 3 Fly Coin routine. P. J. Weber closed the show with a coin to large penny production and vanish and then a card selection in which the card was revealed from his back pocket.

Another night of magic and fun. A thanks to Ron and all the performers. Hope to see many of you at the I.B.M. Annual Convention this year in Grand Rapids! July 4 – 7. Smashing entertainment! Lance Burton Teen Seminar for the youth! Amway Grand Plaza Hotel — historic luxury blended with today’s indulgent luxury with eight lounges and eateries! Includes two Wolfgang Puck restaurants and a Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse! Shops, pool, spa and salon, tennis court, and fitness center! Over 25 walkable eateries between hotel and the classic vaudevillian Civic Theatre! Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum! Frederik Meijer Botanical Gardens and Sculpture Park! Plus more attractions! Oh, and check out a few of the many craft breweries in the Beer City! Convention will be Grand! All details at www.magician.org. Find out more about Grand Rapids at www.experiencegr.com.

Ring 211 December 2017 Report

T’was the night exactly two weeks after Christmas and all through the house not a mouse was stirring, except at the China Buffet restaurant on the southwest side of town where Ring 211 held its annual Holiday Party. Each member and spouse received a gift bag compliments of the Ring which included festive candy pieces and a candy cane. After a delicious filling buffet lunch among the lively friendly chatter, a few of the members, which included Hank Slagter, Steven Elkowitz, Jeff Brodrick, and Gil Scott also performed a trick informally in small groups, in some cases, “a teach and do.” No formal performance program was set. Just a good time of food, magic, fun, and fellowship. Looks to be a bright and exciting year ahead in 2018! Stay tuned with Ring 211 by viewing its web site.

What a fun holiday party. We thank Michele Parkes and her sidekick Jim for their work designing this party. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and Happy New Year! A grand part of the excitement ahead in 2018 is that the I.B.M. Annual Convention will be here in Grand Rapids! Check out the grand talent! All details at www.magician.org. Register before March 1 to avoid the next tier level increase. Also, explore www.amwaygrand.com (Amway Grand Plaza Hotel is the convention hotel). See all what this hotel offers! Eight delightful restaurants including a Ruth’s Chris Steak House and two Wolfgang Pucks! Plus, visit www.experiencegr.com which is the site of Experience Grand Rapids (Convention and Visitors’ Bureau) and the 2018 Visitors’ Guide is now available on line! This site lists the many attractions, things to do, restaurants, events, trip planning, and all about Grand Rapids! Remember, there are over 26 enchanting eateries between the convention hotel and the Civic Theatre. See you July 4 – 7!

Broken Wand: Wayne Ramsdell

This year Ring 211 just lost another member. Wayne Ramsdell passed on December 13, 2017. He held I.B.M. number 64794. Wayne participated in many Ring 211 events and meetings. He was always glad to chat with members. He had vast collections, one such was the many types of storage bags/purses of many sizes he shared at one of the club’s workshops. A few times he was the biggest buyer at the club’s annual auction. He loved Ring 211 and was happy the the next I.B.M. Convention will be in Grand Rapids. Back about ten years ago, he even emailed David Sandy (site chair at the time) influencing him to what Grand Rapids has to offer. Also, he loved his costumes. One never knew what appealing costume he would be wearing at the annual Hocus Pocus Party. His obituary follows below.

Obituary:

Ramsdell, Wayne Ramsdell,

Wayne F. Ramsdell, aged 80 of Greenville, formerly of Grand Rapids [MI] and Cleveland, OH, made his transition on December 13, 2017. He is survived by his wife Nancy; six children: Julie (Tim) McCaul, Bob (Tammi) Ramsdell, Todd (Danita) Wabeke, Tammie Thomson, Tony Losey, Jeff (Jasmine) Losey; eleven grandchildren: Brian (Evangeline) McCaul, Steven McCaul, Callie Wabeke, Jessica Maximillano, Gabby Maximillano, Bella Thompson, Tori Thomson, Mark Losey, Ilona Losey, Solyel Losey, Brandon Losey; one great-grandson, Isaac; sister, Sharon Ols of Cleveland, OH; brother Gary Ramsdell of Columbus, OH and many dear friends. He retired from RTS of Muskegon where he was in sales and served in the Ohio National Guard. Memorial contributions may be made to Frederik Meijer Heart Center. Family will greet friends on Friday, December 22, 2017 from 2-4 and 6-8 at:

Ring 211 November 2017 Report

For our November regular meeting we do not hold a workshop and the business meeting is very brief so we may have enough selling and buying time for our annual auction. The doors opened early for a flea market. Sellers were MagicBob Zoerman, Rick Howell, Marc Denton, John Dudley, Antony Gerard (from Kalamazoo and Ring 333), and Trino. Each had an array of magic product which enticed our eyes. The flea market part was ready at 5:30 PM for any early arrivals. Just past 7:30 PM, as a tribute to the Late Dr. Jack Vander Wal, I had the honors of presenting the Candy Grab Bag Sale. This sale is actually attributed to Percy Abbott as he had many of these types of sales back in the early days of the Abbott Magic Get Togethers. Ninety bags were filled with five pieces of special candy delights. This year the candy was purchased from a little ole’ lady who ran a candy shop just outside downtown Louisville, Kentucky. In July, my father, my nephew Jesse Shira, and I, mistakenly took the wrong exit on our way to the I.B.M./S.A.M. Combined Convention. While our route was diverted we came across her shop. Since we were so close to her shop, we took the candy early. We saved on postage. Five bags yet were a tad bit more of interest as each of these contained a one dollar bill. The bags sold faster than lit flash paper as they were fifty cents a bag or three for one dollar. Over five lengthy (8 foot) tables displayed enticing magic apparatus, tricks, and books. Small illusions, various card tricks, rope, coins, and escape items appealed many. Other items were sold as package deals. Pamphlets, books, magazines, posters, DVDs, and memorabilia filled in any empty spots on the tables. All these items were from the flea market sellers and any other member who had items.

MagicBob Zoerman was the auctioneer. He used his auctioning skilled voice to force those bids to the highest potential. Many of the items sold. The sellers made their profits, the buyers were pleased with their newly purchased “toys,” and the club made ten percent of all sales. Ring Treasurer Michele Parkes and I kept track of each sale making sure the debits matched the credits. P. J. Weber was our biggest buyer this year. Our biggest seller was Trino with a special thanks to Rick Fisher of FAB Magic (Colon, Michigan) who bought a last special deal as Trino wanted to sell the remainder of his items.

Another night of fun and fellowship. The club thanks all who came and either bought, sold, and/or enjoyed the festivities. A thanks to MagicBob and Michele for their devotion to this auction. Thoughts and prayers to our members Ruth Peters, SuZie Zoerman, and Michele Parks (and sister) for health concerns and surgery recoveries. Heads up: I.B.M. Convention is in Grand Rapids! July 4 – 7. All details at www.magician.org. It will be GRAND! Follow “ibm convention” on Facebook and “ibm@ibmmagic” on Twitter. Also on other social networks, just search. Register if you have not already! Get the word out to fellow magi! Hope to see you here!