The 36th Annual Magic Collectors’ Weekend

Discuss the historical aspects of magic, including memories, or favorite stories.

Postby Dustin Stinett » 04/08/05 01:20 AM

I am here at the Magic Collectors Weekend at the Tuscany Suites and Casino in Las Vegas. So I thought Id try to do a daily (make that nightly) blog of the happenings here for those of you who might be interested. I am going to keep the thread locked until the event is over and then I will open it up so, if you like, you can comment or ask questions; okay? (Like you have a choice.)

The weekend actually started for several attendees and me Wednesday night when we attended the local IBM rings auction; the proceeds of which go toward teaching magic at the Boys and Girls Club in town: a wonderful cause. By the way, I picked up a nice P&L dove pan far too cheap, so I will be putting it on eBay and the net proceeds will go to the Boys and Girls Club magic program. So bid high. Remember: its for the kids!!! Of course, I was also supposed to meet up with someone who kindly took time away from his very busy preparations for an upcoming tour to chat with me, but I more or less (unintentionally) blew him off because I got so wrapped up in the auction. But hey, its for the kids!!! If that kind gentleman is reading this, for what its worth, karma works: I ended up sleeping in my car using a pair of rolled up skivvies for a pillow until 6:00 Thursday morning. Paybacks are a bitch. (Oh, and yes: they were mine and they were clean.)

Thursday

Registration started at noon and the dealers room was supposed to open at 1 p.m. I wandered in there in a zombie-like state (I did get a nap in after I got my room situation straightened out) at around 1:30. The adrenaline rush of the treasures in that room woke me up right quick. There is so much incredible stuff here that I cannot begin to describe it. Collectable books, posters ephemera, and apparatus: from antiquarian to early twentieth century and modern time as welljust some amazing things all in one place. Ill try to take some snaps and post them tomorrow). The first event of the day was not scheduled until the evening which gave the attendees lots of time for some serious commerce. In fact, I know one person who did some heavy damage to his kids inheritancebut dammit, it was mine to begin with! (I know, I know: its for the kids!!! Yeah, well, they can sell it all when I catch the last bus.)

The first event started with a welcome from co-host Bill Smith (the other hosts being John Moehring and Bob Rossi) and after some announcements introduced Geno Munari who did a talk on Jimmy Grippo that included a video of Grippo at work and a slideshow of many photos. It was a great talk on a great performer.

Ray Ricard next did a lengthy talk on a tiny subject: Wee Books. He had many photographic examples of these tiny little magic books that ranged from the 17th century to today. The examples were interesting, but I would have liked to have seen a ruler in the photos for comparisons sake. He had one with a quarter next to the tiny book (the smallest he knows of) to give it perspective, however it was a bit difficult, even when he would list the dimensions, to really appreciate just how small some of these books really are; particularly given the fact that we were looking at them on a very large screen.

Next up was a Q&A between Bill Smith and Merrillyn Merrill who was a small child when her parents trouped with Harry Blackstone, Sr. This was a fun chat to listen in on and Ms. Merrill shared several amusing anecdotes.

The Final talk was given by Mike Caveney and was on the remarkable evolution of what started as the Mulholland Collection and is now the International Museum & Library of the Conjuring Arts: better known to some as the David Copperfield Collection. It was an entertaining and informative talk about a collection that I will have the good fortune of seeing a small part of tomorrow: as long as I dont miss the bus (not that busI wont mind being late to that one at all). So thats why I chose to skip the late night screening of a Peter Pit DVDso I could do this for you fine folks and sleep on a real pillow tonight.

Talk to you tomorrow.

Dustin
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 04/09/05 04:00 AM

Friday

I wonder: Is there a way to snooze a hotel wakeup call?

When the science of cryogenic stasis is perfected, I know just how the people coming out of it will feel. Due to the paranoia I felt at a result of the thought of missing my bus to the Copperfield museum, I set up a hotel wakeup call, set an alarm clock and my cell phonein that orderto go off this morning at different intervals. Good thing: I passed back out after the wakeup call. The alarm clock woke me up, and Zombie-Boy struggled through his morning routinesort of. After all, this was quite a bit earlier than my normal morning. I dont really recall shaving, but I must have attempted it. By noon I didnt have five oclock shadow, I had Dr. Pepper shadow: 10, 2 and 4. (Those of you too young to understand that joke; go find some old guy like me that drank Dr. Pepper prior to the mid-1970s or so.)

I managed to make it in time to where we were to meet the buses that would take us to Copperfields. The excitement of what was about to occurfor most of us a once-in-a-lifetime eventbegan to perk me up; and I didnt even need caffeine! (Usually in the form of teasorry Starbucks.)

To be honest with you, given the fact that Id always heard that the location of Copperfields secret warehouse was, well, secret, I had nave fantasies about the buses having blacked out windows and us being blindfolded and the bus driver taking some out of the way route that would be difficult to retrace had I paid attention to the number of left and right turns and so forth. Nopeit was an easy drive over there and now I know where the place is along with the other attendees. The secret is safe with mesorry folks. We also had several rules we had to follow, such as no cameras (bummer) and other requests to protect the collection. Upon arrival I was prepared for a strip-search, but as usual here in Las Vegas, my luck was running bad: Maybe next time.

The warehouse is in a nondescript industrial area of the city and is fronted by a lingerie shop. We entered through the back of the warehouse where David also parks his Shelby Cobra. We were sent through in groups of 25. My groups tour guide was Leo Behnke who acted as curator for the collection for about three years (1996 to 99). He took us through the warehouse where Copperfield stores all of his equipment, set pieces, promotional materials, etc. etc. Copperfield has kept everything, including the equipment he used as a youngster. Its all boxed up and setting on pallets and stored on pallet racks; but it is all catalogued and marked so they know right where everything is. Adorning the walls are numerous postersmost quite large, some giganticof his many appearances around the world.

From the warehouse we entered the conference room where Davids brainstorming and business teams meet. There are several artifacts in the room including some of the original art used on some of his promotional materials and programs, including the piece that is serving as the cover of the Collectors Weekend program as well as attendee badges. Then the real fun began (as if seeing all this wasnt enough). As I passed by Mike Caveney, who was acting as somewhat of a watchdog over the group until one of Copperfields staff could take over, he whispered to me, Youre about to see the tip of the tip of the iceberg. (Remember kids, 90 percent of the iceberg is below the surface.)

We went up a flight of stairs, and this is where it all gets fuzzy as there is so much, and your brain is trying to soak in as much as possible because you know that you have only a short time. One room, the Archives, contains file cabinets filled with ephemera from countless magicians: name someone and if they have at least three pieces in the collection there is a file folder for that person. (Less than three they go into a miscellaneous folder under the appropriate letter.) There were flat files filled with posters (alphabetic), and exhibitssome in cases some notincluding the actual costumes worn by performers like Adelaide Herrmann, Okito and more. The Buzz Saw used by Orson Welles during his famous WWII show in Los Angeles is there. Marvyn Roys large bulb that he would light at the end of his act as well as the bulb Carol appeared inside are some of the newer acquisitions made by David. There were Carter trunks that hauled equipment around the world many times, Blackstone Seniors Tire illusion as well as other pieces; Dantes Spook Cabinet, and more. The collection of magic sets in this room ranges from antiquarian to more recent pieces, and includes many Gilbert Mysto sets that David acquired through our own Chief Genii. The walls are covered with lithographed posters, photos and prints too numerous to name. This room alone would represent several lifetimes of collectingand we have only begun to see what is displayed, which is a fraction of what David Copperfield has (which is why he is planning to build an addition onto the warehouse and increase the size of the museum). Up another set of stairs, the walls of which are lined with prints that alone would take an hour just to look at each one, is the museum itself. Now my head is really spinning.

The first thing you see is the Houdini area which includes the Iron Maiden, Metamorphosis Trunk used, they believe, when Houdini and Bess were with the circus. The centerpiece of this exhibit is the fully restored Water Torture Cell (or the Upside Down for you Houdini aficionados). There are also countless smaller pieces, any one of which could be the centerpiece of someones collection. Like the Archive room, posters abound, all appropriate to the exhibit near them.

The library is also in this room, and the first section you come to is the periodicals. From antiquarian to modern times, most all of them bound. The space taken up by just the periodicals may dwarf my entire libraryand that might include the addition of a complete, beautifully bound file of The Sphinx I recently acquired from Bill Smith! The next section has correspondence courses and other miscellaneous publications as well as the business records of some of the greats. I almost missed what came after that because I zeroed in on his Germain exhibit, including one of his Blooming Rosebushesbuilt by Germains father, as well as other treasures from one of my favorite conjurers from the past. As Leo Behnke was about to speak about the Dante exhibit that came next (before Germain), a quiet voice in the back said, May I cut in? Everyone turned and went into shock: standing among us was our gracious host, David Copperfield who seemed a bit embarrassed by the round of applause that greeted him. David acted as our tour guide for the rest of this amazing journey. He clearly loves this collection, and his enthusiasm for showing it to us was quite apparent and very genuine.

The Dante area included his tuxedo, and his sawing in half as well as his favorite chair (which is all it is; a chair, though hardly average and difficult to describe). Next he showed us a collection of letters and told us a little about their provenance. He had been contacted by some members of the Kellar family regarding letters that they had from Harry Houdini to Kellar and wanted to know if he was interested in acquiring them; Wellyeah, okay was his answer, and after negotiating he obtained these letters. These alone would be priceless, except that David already had the other half of the correspondence: the letters from Kellar to Houdini! So now he has the complete set of letters that went back and forth between these two great friends and icons of the art.

A little further into the room is a case that contains one of the rifles used in Chung Ling Soos bullet catch. There is, of course, a fifty-fifty chance that the rifle is the one that delivered the fatal bullet. Beyond this exhibit is the rest of the Soo exhibit as well as a set of bookcases that is the Antiquarian Library. This includes several editions (including a first) of Scotts Discovery of Witchcraft up to and including Professor Hoffmanns books (and everything in between). And the Hoffmann books were not just editions of Hoffmanns books, but Hoffmans personal copies of his books!

Next up was a very small but exquisite exhibit of Hofzinser pieces including a wand and then the larger Robert-Houdin exhibit, including several if his clocks and automata, a couple of which David demonstrated. He also performed with an automaton that was built by the late Alan Wakeling, which was a lovely way to end this unbelievable journey.

I have only chipped a tiny bit out of this tip of the iceberg. I cannot put into words everything that I saw and felt on this tour. Even if I could find the words, I dont have the time to put it all down. The generosity of David Copperfield for allowing us this incredible privilege is beyond measure. Bill Smiths involvement with getting us that opportunity was vital and it resulted in a moment that will be cherished by over 200 individuals for the rest of their lives. A price tag cannot be placed on moments like these in ones life.

And the day was just starting.

The evening talks had an incredibly difficult act to follow, but the speakers all did an admirable job. First up was David Alexander whose talk was on his friend and mentor, Frakson. It was a heartfelt, well-delivered and informative talk on one of magics greatest performers.

John Moehring then had a chat with the great Peter Reveen which focused on two other great Australian illusionists, Levante and Rooklyn, and how they influenced him as well as Reveens relationships with them.

Charles Reynolds gave a lengthy and informative talk about his involvement with several of the illusions performed by Doug Henning and discussed the evolution of these pieces as well as the inspiration behind their creation. He went over Things That Go Bump in the Night (to this day my favorite of Hennings illusions), the Water Fountain Levitation, and the Fire Bowl production from under a foulard (keep in mind that Henning wore skin tight clothing, so he had no body loads, and was on a bare stage). He also discussed the Motorcycle Transposition (including a fascinating comment about its theoretical relationship to the cups and balls), as well as other famous Henning/Reynolds collaborations.

Steve Forte gave a briskly paced talk on his amazing collection of gambling collectibles that included a great slideshow of many of these astounding pieces that ranged in age from several centuries to a decade or two. This included cards and dice and the various bits of apparatus that were/are used with these primary implements of gaming (dealing shoes, dice cups etc. etc. etc.) as well as chips, game layouts and many other items. Of course he also showed many different examples of cheating paraphernalia, including pieces that the cheater would use to beat the house and pieces the house would use to beat the playerall tremendously fascinating stuff.

The night ended with a trip to the dealers room. (Just what I needed to do, spend more of what I dont have any ofbut dang it, I have to try and catch up with Copperfield and a guy has to start somewhere!)

I know I promised some snaps of the dealers room, and I have them but I still need to upload them to my web space, but Zombie-Boy needs some rest, so Ill try to get them posted tomorrow during a spare moment, okay?

Thanks for reading,
Dustin

PS/Message Department:
My pal Andy Greget, who apparently has a mild allergy to computers, asked that I leave a message for someone, so hopefully Mr. Bane of New York is reading this: Call Andy! His number is (602) 404-3100. For those of you who dont know Andy, hes a great source for hard to find book titles, that is if my friend John Cannon of Aladdin Books(714) 738-6115cant help you!
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 04/10/05 06:40 PM

First of all, let me apologize for not posting last night. I had to wait until I got home since something went whacko with my alternate dialup service. Apparently Im no longer who I am and as a result the password Ive been using no longer worked. Go figure.

I know you have been chomping at the bit to see a few images of the event. All I got were snaps from the Dealers Room: Sorry, but I like to watch talks and shows and not run around looking for angles and all that. I leave that for Pete (but he was not here). So as promised here are the

Pictures, pictures, pictures

Dealers Room view 1 You might recognize Michael Close to the right in the photo. I just love the fact that I can write that Michael Close is on the right.

Dealers Room view 2 Those are not reproductions hanging on the walls folks. And the table to the right is antiquarian items that are just stunning.

Mike Caveney (right) and George Daley Two of my favorite people even if George wont sell me just the pewter coin box with the owl (I have a small collection of owls).

Jay Marshall. No other words are needed.

Norm Nielsen who, with his wife Lupe, is graciously opening their home to attendees so they may see his amazing collection.

Charlie Randal and Richard Hatch of H&R Books. Mike Caveney is speaking with Richard.

Leo Behnke busy selling Steve Fortes amazing new book.

Mario Carrandi (second from the left) who is just about ready to launch his own magic auction site.

Andy Greget upset with me because I just bought a book from John Cannon.

John Cannon not speaking with me because I just bought a book from Andy Greget.

Teller : The silent partner at the H&R booth.

The Chief Genii speaking with George Daley.

Bill Smith who helped me realize a decades old dream by selling me this incredibly beautiful bound file of The Sphinx.

And now

Saturday

Alarm clock? We dont need no stinkin alarm clock! (But it sure would have helped if I turned the dang thing on.) Fortunately, I woke up in time and didnt miss a thingexcept perhaps another opportunity to spend more of what I dont have any of. Ah, it breaks the heart.

My Saturday began with an unofficial event that a handful of people attended. It was a viewing of Diego Domingos presentation on Mr. Q that he originally delivered at the 2003 LA Conference on Magic History. It was great to revisit this very funny piece of history that sounds like a bad B movie plot. Thanks Diego!

So now for the official events: How do you top the main event of this weekend? Lets be honest; you cant. But, no one will hold it against you as long as you give it your best shot. Bill Smith, John Moehring and Bob Rossi hit a homerun with some great talks, a panel discussion with five (make that sixincluding the moderator) living legends of magic, and a great closing banquet and show.

The afternoon talks began with Gabe Fujari who spoke on Eugene Laurant, one of the most successful Chautauqua performers in history and the subject of Gabes latest book.

Leo Behnke gave a marvelous talk on the making of playing cards. It included a bit of a video from Paul-Son, the manufacturer of fine playing cards for casinos. I overheard several peopleprobably card degenerates, although Ive never seen them at the meetingssaying how they would have liked to see the whole video. What we saw was very fascinating, particularly for us card-cases.

Bob Rossi introduced himself, as he was the next speaker and he regaled the room on the early years of Dunningers career. It was a rare look considering most of what we see and read about covers his radio and television career.

The highlight of the afternoon was a panel discussion on what Las Vegas was like when there were but a handful of hotels in town and ran mostly by organized crime figures. The panel was made up of performers who worked as opening acts and filled variety spots in the early revue shows. The stellar panel consisted of Johnny Thompson, Channing Pollock, Marvyn Roy and Jay Marshall. The discussion was moderated by Max Maven. (You know, Tony Danza can get a talk show: how about Max?) They covered the early years of Vegas and shared anecdotes and experiences during this golden time in the citys history. Pam Thompson and Carol Roy were in the audience with microphones adding their thoughts as welland keeping their men honest. Siegfried made a (sort of) surprise appearance and, after genuflecting before the panel, spoke about his early experiences in the city. He made it quite clear the debt of gratitude he owed these four legendary performers.

Another quick pass through the Dealers Room was followed by my trying to get online to post the photos. It ended up being a cussing session with my laptop. Poor thingI know its really not its fault, but it represents the insidious evil that lurks in the shadows of the unknown to computer illiterates like me.

The final event was the banquet and Las Vegas Revue. After the dinner plates were cleared and the coffee served, Mac King to the stage as host of the evening. The first act was David Alexander who recreated Fraksons act.

Next was Russ Merlin who did a comedy turn that involved four volunteers (I would refer to them as victims) that I really cannot describe. Perhaps more knowledgeable folks can fill you in to what one might call his funnyand loud (just as he likes it)act.

Max Maven took the stage next and performed a Spirit Slate effect that I am sure had many folks scratching their heads.

Mac King performed next, doing his goldfish piece and his wonderful thumb tie. There were some very funny momentsas there always are with Mac Kingon this night.

Illusionist Rick Thomas (who is now performing his great afternoon show at the Stardust after many years at the Tropicana) closed the show with his Twister illusion and also his great presentation of the Wakeling Sawing.

The Dealers Room opened up so we could have one more shot at buying that volume of Modern Magic wed been eying all weekend. Im sure I wasnt alone in making last minute purchases, the dealers were all pretty much packing it up. Im sure they too want to be able to get up in time to make it to the last event of the weekend, which is a trip to Norm Nielsens home.

Though I cannot post this yet, I assure you that I am writing this at 2:00 a.m. Sunday morning. I will write up my experience at Mr. Nielsens when I arrive home tomorrow and post it from there. So, until then, night-night!

Dustin

I wrote that early this morning and just got home to post it. Again, sorry to those of you who were actually reading this and were expecting a post earlier.

Later this evening I will post the Sunday event. Right now I need to make a couple of corrections:

Andy Greget would like to apologize to Mr. Bain for giving me the incorrect spelling of his name. He would still very much like to hear from you. His number can be found in the Friday post.

Also, it seems that the consensus is that the Shelby Cobra belongs to Chris Kenner and not David Copperfield. I should have guessed that: Davids cars come in the stretch variety Im sure.

Talk to you later tonight, and thanks for reading!

Dustin
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 04/11/05 01:33 AM

SundaySundaySunday!!!

(No, we didnt go to a tractor pull.)

Sunday was one of those mixed emotion days: The convention proper is over; its time to go home and back to the real world. But there was one more thing in store for those who signed up for it: A visit the beautiful home of Norm and Lupe Nielsen for a tour of his magnificent collection of posters.

I went with the Chief Genii and we arrived a tad early, which allowed me to snap some pictures of the living roomalso known as the Soo Room because of the (I believe) 65 Chung Ling Soo posters that adorn its wallswithout a lot of people blocking the best views. (Sorry, but I promised that the photos were for my private scrapbook and not for publication. It is his home after all, and he was gracious enough to invite about 200 people to visit.)

Upon arrival, each attendee was given an exclusive Norm Nielsen Mirror Card that commemorates the day. These will never be sold which makes this gift that much more extraordinary: it was a special gesture from a special man.

We were split into groups of ten or so for the tour of the wing of the home that contains the bulk of the collection. Inside there are several alcoves dedicated to one or two magicians where the half-sheet, one-sheet and some two-sheet posters are displayed (all beautifully framed, of course). Another larger alcove has the large postersas many as eight-sheets in sizedisplayed. One hangs on the wall while several others hang on a slider system that extends out parallel to the wall (one poster per slider) that allows him to pull them out one at a time for viewing. One set of sliders had the very large posters while another had the three and four-sheet varieties. I lost count in the Soo Room so forget about counting those in the collection (and I forgot to askI was too astonished to say anything more than thank you to Mr. Nielsen).

While the tours were going on, the rest of us were socializing, made easy by the refreshments supplied and the comfortable setting (inside and out). It provided an opportunity to say one last see-you later to old friends and new. It made for a spectacular finish to an incredible event.

I would like to extend my appreciation to Bill Smith, John Moehring and Bob Rossi for organizing this wondrous event. Their staff and crew also deserve a special thank you. Convention volunteers work very hard (been there: done that) and dont get to have as much fun as the attendees; so thanks folks. Of course, an event like this wouldnt be the same without the dealers who show up with their wares for us to purchase and dream of purchasing: so thanks (and youre welcome!) to them as well. My thanks also to all of the speakers and performers who kept us informed and entertained throughout the event: And, of course, a very big thank you to David Copperfield and Norm Nielsen who generously invited us into their inner sanctums for a pair of experiences that will be long remembered.

And one more personal thank you to Bill Smith who made a long-time dream come true.

The thread is now open for your questions and comments!

Thanks for reading!
Dustin
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Postby Michael Edwards » 04/11/05 03:38 AM

Thank you, Dustin, for this wonderful report. It was an exceptional conference. By the way, next year's will be March 30-April 1 in Washington, DC so mark your calendars now!

PS...Dustin, I did note your car was riding a bit low as you were leaving Las Vegas ;)
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Postby James Foster » 04/11/05 02:41 PM

Dustin,

I'm sure I speak for many forum readers when I thank you for the entertaining and informative report from the conference. After I read your first post (and my envy ebbed a bit), I eagerly looked forward to your missives. They were excellent tonic for those of us not in Las Vegas for the event. Thanks again.

All the best,

James
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Postby Don Wilson » 04/11/05 03:04 PM

Dustin,
Speaking for myself (and I'm sure for many others), THANKS for such a complete, interesting, informative rundown on the Magic Collectors Weekend! Where else could we receive such a full report, with so many pictures, than on The Forum?
Thanks again, Don Wilson
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Postby GAMOLO » 04/11/05 03:38 PM

Dear Dustin,
Send me an email (Gamolo@aol.com) and I will send you a picture back that you might enjoy:

It is really Poe like Owl figure, made of beautiful painted wood.

Quarters appear in the eyes & from the nose.

Purchased at Yankee # 9 in Worcester, Mass. from the Bob Shoof collection.

Best regards,
Gale
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 04/11/05 10:59 PM

Thanks for the kind words, I appreciate them and it was my pleasure. Yes, Michael, the car was riding lower than usual! And Gale, I have sent you an email. You can also get my email address by clicking on my profile card icon.

Thanks!
Dustin
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Postby Guest » 04/12/05 12:11 PM

As always you made me wish I was there, thanks for all the great info Dustin!
Steve V <--Dustin is his hero
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 04/12/05 01:56 PM

And Steve is my Super Hero: Gold Thong, Cape--what a sight to see!
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Postby Glenn Farrington » 04/12/05 08:27 PM

Great report Dustin!
Comedy's Easy...Dying Sucks.
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Postby Steve Bryant » 04/12/05 08:35 PM

Thanks, Dustin. You've made us soooo jealous.
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Postby Pete Biro » 04/12/05 11:36 PM

Kudos dude... well done... almost felt there. Where was Kenner's Lamborghini?
Stay tooned.
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Postby Matthew Field » 04/13/05 02:38 AM

Dustin -- First rate report! Many thanks from this MCA member in London.

Matt Field
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Postby Guest » 04/13/05 07:54 AM

Dustin sounds like alot of FUN!! I was in Vegas a couple of weeks ago working and I went to see Copperfields show. Afterwards I saw Chris Kenner an went to say hey to him and then he asked me if I would like to go over to the warehouse? Well of course i went. I drove over with Homer to the warehouse with a couple of other friends of theirs.

What they/Copperfield were doing was going through a dry run of the warehouse and musesum. And like Dustin said it was totally amazing to see everything first hand. They worked very hard to get everything looking the way it did.

Bill Smith and John Moering were both there that night as well.

Dustin thanks again enjoyed reading your updates. I was excited for all you who got to attend the convention.

Ken
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Postby Bob Kentner » 04/13/05 11:13 AM

Dustin,
The group I was with at Norm's house did ask how many posters were in the collection. Norm said he didn't know.

You did a wonderful report. It will be an experience all will cherish for a long time.

Bob
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 04/13/05 11:01 PM

Thanks again to all.

Pete B.: I didn't see a Lamborghini but did see a nice Porsche.

Steve B.: I picked up another treasure, though I'm sure you have dozens: A Melinda deck of cards.
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Postby Bill Palmer » 04/16/05 12:02 AM

Great report, Dustin!

I enjoyed this convention a whole lot. Mike Caveney conducted our tour through the Copperfield Museum...sort of. As it turned out, David was being given his award -- he was the honoree of the convention this year -- at the warehouse, because he couldn't get off work to attend our banquet. So he actually accompanied our group through much of the tour. We got some really close looks at some very wonderful objects, posters, books, etc.

The trip to Norm and Lupe's was one of the high points of the occasion. They are truly nice people.

But the real highlight for me was not connected to the convention at all. Paul Kozak invited my wife and a friend and me to the show at the Greek Isles (The World's Greatest Magic Show) and afterwards to a birthday party for Dirk Losander. I got to rub shoulders with lots of friends and acquaintances.

It was a lovely event. And I got some nice cups and some great art for the cups and balls museum.
Bill Palmer, MIMC
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Postby Guest » 04/27/05 04:21 PM

Bill,

I agree that the reports were great. Spring is always a busy time for Lucy and me. Play time we have a hard time budgeting. When you write tempting reports like this, you really know how to hurt a guy.

It appears that we missed much.

Someday...

Bob and Lucy Sanders
Magic By Sander
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Postby Guest » 04/27/05 08:06 PM

Great report Dustin. I felt I was reliving the weekend. I'll try and remember to show a ruler next time I lecture on wee books.
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 04/27/05 08:57 PM

Thanks Ray. And anything that would show perspective (like the one with the quarter) would be great. It was a fascinating talk, but I honestly believe it would have more impact with that addition.

By the way, I wanted to ask you if a couple of books I have qualify:

The first is a copy of Hoyle's Games (J.B. Lippincott & Co. 1866). It is a tad thick (just under 1") at 277 pages but it is only 4 5/8" high by 3 1/4" deep.

The second is The Conjurer's Vade Mecum by J.F. Orrin (David McKay Company, ND). It is 1/2" thick (160 pages), 6" high by 3 1/2" deep.

I know they are certainly pushing the envelope (no pun intended) of "Wee" but I was curious.

Thanks again!
Dustin
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Postby Magiphile » 04/28/05 11:43 AM

Ray,
It was really a very informative talk and we're so happy that we were able to get you to do it. My suggestion is that, because this is a "magicians" talk, you might want to consider using a magician's token or palming coin as your reference thus making it more International. I'm sure it will be easier for the Brits, French, Italians etc to grasp.
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Postby Guest » 04/28/05 05:51 PM

Dustin,

The Hoyle's games is not included because (1)it contains no magic and (2) as you pointed out it would be difficult to seal in an envelope which is one of the criteria.

Conjurers Vade-Mecum was included. It is entry #536.
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Postby Guest » 04/28/05 05:53 PM

Thanks Bob for the suggestion and kind words. Next time I'll remember.

Ray
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