Wisconsin

Where local magicians eat, meet, and greet.

Postby Dmatthew » 01/30/08 04:46 PM

Hey everyone, just curious about the Madison, Wisconsin area. I know it's not far from Houdini's childhood home and I'm gonna be there this summer for a few days. Anyone ever been there or have any advice on what not to miss?
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Postby Adrian Kuiper » 01/31/08 12:36 PM

Not magic, but Madison is home to one of the Greatest Drum and Bugle Corps that ever marched:

The Scouts.

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Postby Jenna Kissel » 02/21/08 02:30 PM

I've been here a year and haven't found much yet.
I still haven't gone to Appleton, although hopefully I will go when it gets warmer. If you do find anything magic in the area can you let me know, I have been going through magic withdrawl.
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Postby George Olson » 02/21/08 04:46 PM

Don't forget the Magic Show up in The Delles. My budy went there this summer, but it was dark.

Supposed to be quite good!

GO
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Postby Lynetta » 02/21/08 05:20 PM

Here is a link to the Rick Wilcox Magic Theater in Wisconsin Dells. Rick and Suzan are both very nice people.

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Postby Amos McCormick » 02/21/08 06:32 PM

Originally posted by Adrian Kuiper:
Not magic, but Madison is home to one of the Greatest Drum and Bugle Corps that ever marched:

The Scouts.

Adrian
...and about two hours east of another of them - the Blue Stars!

Image
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Postby Adrian Kuiper » 02/22/08 01:39 PM

I'm old....I can't remember everything!!! <grin>

But NO ONE should forget the Blue Stars.

My bad.

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Postby Harry Entwistle » 02/22/08 03:48 PM

The Houdini Club of Wisconsin holds a convention in Appleton, Wisconson around the end of August.
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Postby Tortuga » 04/04/08 01:12 PM

Don't know if you are still looking for input, but I have visited two magic shops in Wisconsin that I really liked. There is one in Waukesha, about 45 minutes from Madison. It is called Jest for fun and is run by Jeffrey Campbell. He of the crystal cups book, published by Mickey Hades. I believe it is one of the first 'clear' cups and balls routines. Jeff is a super guy. The other one is in Milwaukee and is called Theophilus Magic Co. and is well-stocked with all of the latest goodies as well as the old standards. The shop in Appleton, not far from the Houdini Museum was o.k., the owner is extremely nice, but it does not have a huge inventory. There are two other sources. One is the University Book Store in Madison. Never been there, but they carry Magic Magazine and possibly other books, etc. The other one was down in Janesville, south of Madison. Don't remember the name, but again, the owner is a super guy. He spent a lot of time with me discussing the 'good old days'. He also has a local club and a small theatre with seating, stage, etc. Worth trying to find. I'm sure you could Google it.

Good luck.
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Postby James Nelson » 04/08/08 12:07 PM

On February 23rd, I went up to see The Rick Wilcox Show in Wisconsin Dells. I had been to the show in 1999 and was pleased to discover that they change their show each year to accomodate repeat visitors. Every thing about the show was first class. Easy parking, beautiful theatre and very friendly staff. Every seat in the house is choice in this intimate venue. Very family oriented.
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Postby Michael Kamen » 04/08/08 12:33 PM

Thanks for the tip James. Do you happen to know if the Wilcox show at the Dells is seasonal?
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Postby Frank Yuen » 04/08/08 04:53 PM

Michael,

The next show won't be until May 15th. Here's the schedule page of their website. They are probably working on this year's show at the moment as well as relaxing a bit before the summer season starts.

I've known Rick for about 15 years and can honestly say that the last edition of the show was the best yet. You won't be disappointed. Every year seems to get better and better, either with new additions to the show proper or improvements to the theater.

Here's a link to a Promo video on Youtube.
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Postby Michael Kamen » 04/08/08 09:05 PM

Thanks Frank. My wife is from Madison, and I lived there for a couple of years. We love it there and go back a couple of times a year and will DEFINATELY go to the Dells for this show.
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Postby Glenn Bishop » 04/09/08 11:04 AM

Years ago I won the first place close up award at the Houdini Convention when the Houdini club had it in Madison WI. This was back in the 70's.

In my opinion there convention is one of the best magic conventions. A lot of great magicians in WI. Bob Rath, Ron Kaye and David Seabech.

I performed at one of the close up shows - a few years back. At the Houdini Convention when it was in Appleton. Its still one of the best magic conventions.

I was born in Milwaukee so it was sort of like coming home!

It was a great time.
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Postby JimChristianson » 04/09/08 01:41 PM

Scouts? Blue Stars? Bah!

VELVET KNIGHTS, BABY!!!!!!!
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Postby Erik Hemming » 04/22/08 06:04 AM

My two cents...

Wilcox is worth the visit. Terry's shop, in Janesville, is also worth the trip. Principally for the experience of Terry, and what is likely the world's only magic shop/welding business and magic theater.

The University Book Store in Madison used to stock Genii and Magic magazines, and a wide variety of top-notch magic publications. They no longer do. (The guy that used to keep it well stocked got an offer he couldn't refuse...so I switched jobs, and now run a bookstore in Milwaukee.)

There is no magic shop in Madison, at the moment. Theophilus and Jest for Fun are also near-by in Milwaukee. Theophilus has a great selection for a small shop, a great staff, and a fun crew of regulars. If you decide to visit Milwaukee, American Science Surplus is a wonderful pit-stop if you like to tinker and dream. Some of the weirdest stuff ever assembled in one place.

Madison has an IBM ring. It meets the first Sunday of the of the month at the brewpub T.J Whitney's. There are a few really good bar/restaurant workers in town, so there's usually an evening of magic a couple of nights a week. Pick up the free news/arts weekly, the Isthmus, or log into thedailypage.com when you hit town for specific events/times/places.

The area has fabulous local beer, wine and, of course, cheese. In the summer, Madison is best out-of-doors. There's a nearby festival most weekends, one of the biggest farmer's markets in the U.S. every Saturday morning on the Capitol square, and some of the best bike trails around.
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Postby Jenna Kissel » 05/20/08 01:42 PM

Erik Hemming wrote:My two cents...


The University Book Store in Madison used to stock Genii and Magic magazines, and a wide variety of top-notch magic publications. They no longer do.


They still sell Magic books, just not in the same area where they were before. They have newer books from what I have been noticing. I don't know about the magazines. I subscribe and don't pay attention if they sell them or not.
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Postby Erik Hemming » 05/25/08 01:47 AM

Sorry, Jenna.

I should have been a little more articulate. UBS is no longer restocking books/DVDs from Kaufman & Co., Hermetic Press, L&L, Magic Inc., Squash, Murphy's, etc. Anything that was in-stock on 12/2006 and hasn't sold, is still there. The single likely exception is Dover. (Nothing to sneeze at, Dover, they do us all a great service.) But the magic offerings are markedly diminished from what they were a year or so ago.

And, yes, I have it from a reliable source that they are no longer distributng Genii or Magic.
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Postby Michael Kamen » 10/17/08 10:43 AM

Just wanted to report that we made it to the Wilcox Theater in Wisconsin Dells, Aug 8. It was well worth the trip. Rick is an outstanding entertainer, and is providing world class family entertainment.
James Nelson wrote:On February 23rd, I went up to see The Rick Wilcox Show in Wisconsin Dells. I had been to the show in 1999 and was pleased to discover that they change their show each year to accomodate repeat visitors. Every thing about the show was first class. Easy parking, beautiful theatre and very friendly staff. Every seat in the house is choice in this intimate venue. Very family oriented.
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Postby James Nelson » 10/27/08 07:01 PM

Michael...

Glad to hear you enjoyed the show. I plan on visiting again after the holidays. It is always a great get-away during the doldrums of winter.

James Nelson
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Postby x-treem » 04/29/09 01:13 PM

I realize this is an old thread but there is a small group of magicians that meet in Appleton, very informal usually they just show what they have been working on and get feedback from each other.

Chris and Mike (founders of Houdini Days) can usually be found at the meetings.

I do not believe they have an official name but I've always called it Marv's Magic Meeting.

If anyone is interested I can find out if they still get together and get the meeting dates posted here. I've been thinking about going back myself it has been at least two years since I've made a meeting.

Abracadabra Magic Shop used to have a group that meet there once a month but I do not know if they meet anymore. I'm always willing to hang out with people around the Fond du Lac area.
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