Very sad. The first magic convention I ever attended as a registrant was the Twenty-Fourth Annual Magi-Fest in February, 1955. What an experience for a young boy! To this day whenever I experience a bone-chilling gray winter day, perhaps with a few snow flurries, I think, What perfect weather for a magic convention. The site was the Neil House, a fine old hotel that added to the overall experience. Registration was $5. Twelve dealers operated from individual hotel rooms on the second floor: Ken Allen, Arlane, Joe Berg, Jack Chanin, Gemagic, The Marshalls, E. J. Moore, S. W. Reilly, Chet Roth, Satan, Regow, and Yohe. I remember buying several Fox Lake decks, the Fox Lake card assortment, and Miko. The Saturday afternoon close-up show was designated Table Magic. Another treat was having lunch in Mills Cafeteria just down High Street from the hotel.
The Saturday night show, staged at the nearby Masonic Temple Theater, was emceed by Jay Marshall, billed as direct from the Palace Theatre in New York City. The acts were the Imperial Eckam Family, Bob Ellis, Danny Johnson, Al Saal, Ken Allen, and Joy the Magician & Company. I recall Danny Johnson performing amazing close-up in the hotel coffee shop. What wonderful memories! I have since attended many magic conventions, but none made as great an impression as this first one.