Magic Castle difficulties

Discuss the latest news and rumors in the magic world.
Jonathan Townsend
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Jonathan Townsend » June 28th, 2011, 10:43 am

MYOB
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Brad Henderson
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Brad Henderson » June 28th, 2011, 10:54 am

Passionboy wrote:Brad, do you think you are helping? I am merely wondering!



As I have said on this and in other threads, as long as the there are those blindly throwing rumors and playing 'I know something you don't know' games, the castle will remain (at least in perception, and thereby in reality) on the brink of disaster.

More communication and openess from the board about facts and numbers will go a long way to changing that. But as long as members keep playing the 'I heard
something but that's all I can say game' (or - perhaps - 'just wondering'') nothing will get solved. .


So, yes, by pointing out your nonsense and how it works to the detriment of those who care about the success of the magic castle, I do think I am being helpful.(though that observation may be obvious to every reader on this forum with, apparently, one 'passionate' exception.

Ive answered your question, quid pro quo, how do you think feeding the rumor mill helps matters at the club?

What do you hope to accomplish by these '[censored]' posts?
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Pete Biro
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Pete Biro » June 28th, 2011, 12:07 pm

I dunno... whenever I go there it is crowded. I think some changes of late have really improved things. Those on the board I chat with are confident all is well on the way to "good".
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Passionboy
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Passionboy » June 28th, 2011, 10:20 pm

Brad, I'm merely trying to obtain information. You are projecting concepts into my statements that aren't even there, and that is really nonsense!

I certainly care abut the success of The Magic Castle! I feel passionate about it!

They don't call me Passionboy for nothing!
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Brad Henderson
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Brad Henderson » June 29th, 2011, 2:49 am

'they' call you passionboy? Really? Who is 'they' and if 'they' know who you are, why not 'us'?

And apparently i am not the only one who thinks you are just '[censored] stirring'. Why else would you resurrect a long dead thread, as rk chastised you for?

As long as you play your little games, alleging sought out information or otherwise, you will only be contributing to the problems. If you truly care, as you say you do, then the smart decision would be to cease.

Your actions hence forth will speak volumes.

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Richard Kaufman » June 29th, 2011, 10:50 am

Okay, enough. Passionboy and Mr. Henderson, please refrain from further posts in this or any other thread about The Magic Castle. Thank you.
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houdini's ghost
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby houdini's ghost » June 29th, 2011, 1:36 pm

After the concise, sane, post by Max Maven in which he explained that we now have monthly "member meet-ups" at the Castle where these concerns can be discussed there was no call for most of the posts which followed. Certainly PassionBoy could attend those.
Max also advised us that an activist board and a hard working staff are working to fix things.
There is frustration in not knowing how things will ultimately play out, but, PassionBoy can go to the Castle every night if he wants.
We have to face the fact that the Castle sits on land that is more valuable than the club could ever be--that there is a financial sword of Damocles hanging over it, and big money could sweep it away like so much dust--or save it.
In the meantime, the Magic Castle--the Academy, really--is the greatest magic club in the world.
Some of the posts on this thread have been very childish--some kind of need for attention thing.
Speaking of, my friend Bernard Reid is painfully parting with some books, including Houdini--the Key (he's moving overseas).
He put the book on ebay and I was surprised because I still have a few unsold copies of the original 278.
He titled the auction: The Key by Patrick Culliton. Didn't mention Houdini. Ebay wouldn't let him fix it.
It's a steal! Bernie Reid is a great guy with 100% positive feedback.
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... K:MEWAX:IT
I apologize for the hijack--trying to help a friend--back to troubles at the Castle.
I don't trust the leadership because I have to, I trust the leadership because I know these people and I believe in them.
Patrick Culliton

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Pete Biro
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Pete Biro » June 30th, 2011, 10:47 am

Patrick: As long as the Castle doesn't screw up the Cobb Salad, we'll be happy.
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Larry Horowitz
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Larry Horowitz » July 1st, 2011, 5:08 pm

Finally some good news!

I have just come from lunch with Randy Sinnott. Randy has been working tirelessly on the AMA finances. He has been in constant contact with Dave Clement. They have been reviewing, reorganizing and correcting and implementing financial stragtagies which are beginning to show positive results.

Our June numbers were better then expected. In fact, Randy specifically said to me that I should now feel comfortable accepting the discounts offered to me as both an AMA member and a committee member.

While I cannot speak to details, (I believe that should be done by our elected officials), I can state for fact, not rumor, that I know of at least one change in our operating expense which will save the AMA tens of thousands of dollars per year. I am not alluding to any employees that recently left the castle. I am talking about operational changes. I know this is not rumor because I personally made the phone calls that got the ball rolling.

I had said previously on the Castle forums that I and others should not accept discounts until the castle was in a better financial state. That now appears to be the case. It is a big ship and it turns slowly. But it is turning.

Randy Sinnott and Dave Clement will have more good news and information for the members in the coming months. There will be an open meeting with questions on July 28(?).

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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Brandon Hall » July 2nd, 2011, 12:11 pm

This certainly is good news! Thanks, Larry
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Passionboy
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Passionboy » July 4th, 2011, 7:33 am

Happy 4th of July! God Bless America!

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Donal Chayce
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Donal Chayce » July 4th, 2011, 1:48 pm

Passionboy wrote:Happy 4th of July! God Bless America!


Thanks, but I would have expected more from you. Perhaps an Independence Day poem?
The MacGician®

Passionboy
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Passionboy » July 4th, 2011, 9:00 pm

Yes, thank you, Donal. Here is a 4th of July poem I would like to dedicate to everyone . . . even Brad, who seems to be an excellent writer and reviewer for the magic magazines. Nice going Brad!

ON THE FOURTH OF JULY

God Bless this country of the Stars and Stripes,
Where Freedom reigns and on this day was born;
This land of beauty and great archetypes,
And Liberty smiles brightly every morn.

DON BEACH, Magic Castle Poet Laureate

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Dustin Stinett
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Dustin Stinett » July 5th, 2011, 2:57 pm

BREAKING NEWS:

Message Posted on: Tuesday July 05,2011 11:33:01 AM

Effective today, Mark Felicetti will no longer be performing the duties of Executive Director of the Academy of Magical Arts. The Board wishes Mark well in his future endeavors.

As with all employment matters, the Board as a whole and its individual members are not permitted to comment or answer questions and will not be responding to Forums posts, emails or messages concerning these matters.

A search committee formed by the Board of Directors will identify and interview candidates to fill the position of Executive Director. The committee will receive guidance from the Board as to the job description, scope of duties, compensation and qualifications and will review qualified applicants from within the membership and outside of it. Following the committee's review and interview of applicants, it will make recommendations to the Board which will then interview the most qualified candidates in order to make the final selection.

During the transition period the Board has determined not to name an interim Executive Director.

This announcement was approved by the Board of Directors.

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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Brandon Hall » July 5th, 2011, 5:27 pm

and the hits keep coming
"Hope I Die Before I Get Old"

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Terrence
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Terrence » July 5th, 2011, 8:00 pm

...and, this is being discussed on the "moribund" Magic Castle Forum as well...

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Richard Kaufman » July 5th, 2011, 9:25 pm

Changes, as promised.
More to come.
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El Harvey Oswald
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby El Harvey Oswald » July 6th, 2011, 1:50 am

How is that a "hit"? Fewer football parties that convert Inner Circle to a sports bar = good thing. He and the other incompetent layabouts are finally being purged. Progress. Changes; as promised.

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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Brandon Hall » July 6th, 2011, 10:07 am

Hey, I had no idea. Seriously...seems like only yesterday everyone was happy at his promotion.
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Pete Biro
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Pete Biro » July 7th, 2011, 2:02 pm

Ignorance is bliss... that's why I'm always happy.
Stay tooned.

KirkG
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby KirkG » July 7th, 2011, 2:20 pm

Brandon Hall wrote:Hey, I had no idea. Seriously...seems like only yesterday everyone was happy at his promotion.


Actions speak louder than words.

Alan Bursky
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Alan Bursky » July 9th, 2011, 4:44 am

Not everyone was happy. The last 2 years were the biggest losses the Castle has ever had. They kept saying the Castle was doing great. The Castle was making money. Well now the truth is out, and Mark is gone. 2 down, 2 to go. Last year if you remember, Mark, Dave, and George tried to get me expelled from the club over my Heidi Hoff posts. I told them I would have the last laugh. 2 years ago Dave Clement told me it didn't matter that he wasn't a CPA. He said; "I run rings around CPA's.". I guess all that running in circles is the reason Randy Sinnot is having a special meeting for the membership to explain the financials. All that running in circles will make you dizzy.
Sincerely,
Payback is a bitch Bursky

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Richard Kaufman » July 9th, 2011, 1:07 pm

More good things coming. Rebuilding the finances of a mismanaged business takes time. It IS happening and things are getting better with each passing week.
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erdnasephile
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby erdnasephile » July 9th, 2011, 11:10 pm

I just read Randy Sinnott's new regular column in the members' newsletter Re: Castle Finances--what a breath of fresh air! Straight talk and no condescending admonitions to the membership.

The upcoming member's meeting sounds promising, and it's clear that the BOD is making a real attempt to be transparent and to set things right.

Kudos and best wishes to them in this important endeavor.

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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Alan Bursky » July 9th, 2011, 11:29 pm

Big difference with a new President of the AMA. NPH gave us the change we can believe in that Obama promised. Especially with replacing a hack treasurer, getting rid of the Executive Director that thought he didn't have to answer to anyone, and thought he knew better than anyone. The BOD's new direction is a breath of fresh air to the 12th power. As I said, 2 down, 2 to go.

Just the facts Bursky

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Richard Kaufman » July 12th, 2011, 11:21 pm

I'll just reiterate what erdnasephile wrote: the new column "Report from the Treasurer" in the latest issue of the AMA newsletter by new board member and treasurer Randy Sinnott is about as straight-forward a statement as you can ask for.

Having just spent a few hours with Randy and getting to know him a little better, he seems like exactly what he is: a straight-from-the-hip no bullsh*t ex-marine who's also a smart-as-hell lawyer with exactly the kind of intelligence and personality to get things done. A can-do guy.

NOTE that there is a meeting of the membership on Thursday July 28 at 8 pm in the Inner Circle and Randy states: "I will answer any and all questions that are asked about our finances at the meeting." So quit making a fuss and go to the meeting and ask your questions. He will answer them.
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JimW
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby JimW » July 12th, 2011, 11:35 pm

Adding to what Richard said, the announcement on the Castle members page also says "You do not need to submit questions in advance or in writing." I'm pretty sure this is a first, and it means we can ask follow up questions. I'm optimistic.

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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby El Harvey Oswald » July 13th, 2011, 5:58 am

Sinnott was the perfect choice for all the reasons R.K. notes. Already, at the last "Meet Up," he evidenced a willingness to answer any question that was ripe to be answered. None of the usual retreat into bureaucratic formalism, where everything that matters is deferred to some unspecified "proper" forum in the indefinite future. None of the usual strictures, the most odious of which is the pre-submitted question, a favored tool of the corrupt and the dumb. I join in Alan's schadenfreude at the fall of the arrogant.

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Richard Kaufman » July 13th, 2011, 10:16 am

The board members have been hamstrung and been literally unable to answer lots of questions while Lameroux was president and Fellicetti was manager because the board members could not get answers to questions THEMSELVES. The ex-president managed to keep the financial figures a secret from the board for a year.

All of that has changed, as we're seeing now.
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El Harvey Oswald
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby El Harvey Oswald » July 13th, 2011, 11:58 am

Although I'm not remotely an authority, RK's assessment comports exactly with what those who are trusted and informed consistently say.

And Alan Bursky has a record for being not just accurate, but prescient. He's a far more serious person than many acknowledge.

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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Chris Aguilar » July 13th, 2011, 11:01 pm

As someone who has long flirted with the idea of joining the AMA (and even got buy-in from the missus) it's encouraging to hear of progress in stabilizing their fiscal issues.

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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Mark Collier » July 15th, 2011, 3:05 pm

I just got booked for the W.C. Fields Bar August 19th and 20th.

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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Bob Cassidy » July 15th, 2011, 4:37 pm

I just got booked for the Parlour Sept 5 - 11.
And remember, my friends, future events such as these will affect you in the future.-Criswell

El Harvey Oswald
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby El Harvey Oswald » July 18th, 2011, 1:24 pm

castle seems fine. there's clearly enough cash flow to at least break even. and it's slightly preposterous that none of the inveterate famous-person ass-kissing that goes on has yielded a $5- or $10-million bequest to serve as an endowment. even so, the new treasurer has staked a lot on putting things in order, which appears to be exactly what's happening.

problem solved; probably time to close the thread.

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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Terrence » July 24th, 2011, 11:27 am

Randy's AMA Treasurer Report meeting is just a few days away - Thursday 7/28.

Bring your financial questions.

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby Richard Kaufman » September 14th, 2011, 4:11 pm

From the Magic Castle Board:

"The Board of Directors has determined that it is in the best interests of the Academy of Magical Arts to eliminate the position of General Counsel. The Board expresses its appreciation to George Juarez for his substantial contributions while serving in this post over many years. ...

"The needs and budget of the Academy have changed since the position of General Counsel was first created. In the event that specialized legal advice is required in the future, the Board will retain counsel as needed. ...

"This announcement was approved by the Board of Directors."

Considering that the state bar in California recently recommended that George Juarez be suspended from the practice of law in the State of California for one year, this announcement is not surprising.
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erdnasephile
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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby erdnasephile » September 14th, 2011, 7:27 pm

I continue to be impressed with Neil and the board. This and other developments show they are dead serious about getting us on solid footing again and that everything is on the table.

I salute them!

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Re: Magic Castle difficulties

Postby JohnCox » September 15th, 2011, 4:19 pm

Team Castle
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