Wednesday, November 10, 2010
This past weekend I attended an "Magic Unconvention" at Cumberland Falls State park in Southeastern Kentucky. I started attending this annual event back in 1988, and look forward to it each year. Someone once asked me what it's like at a magic convention. I stated that it would be similar to having about 100 eleven year old boys get together with no parental control. It is a nonstop action of practical jokes, good natured ribbing, beautiful magic, and gathering of old friends.
The "big" magic conventions are held in large cities at fancy (expensive) hotels, and very structured show times, lectures,and competions. These "big conventions usually have turnouts of 300-900 magicians, run from Thurs evening thru Saturday night. The going rate for registration is about $110, the rooms at the hotels are around $ 125 per night.
Our "Unconvention" usually draws about 90-100 magicians from Ohio, Indiana, Tennessee, and KY., and is held at a fairly remote (but beautiful) State Park. It runs just Friday and Saturday, registration is $20, rooms are around $85 per night.
What makes it "Unconventinal" is the fact that things are only really planned out once folks get there. Example: There are magic shows ( free to the public ) on Friday and Saturday night.... anyone that wants to perform signs up when they register. The lecturers times are a little more structured for Saturday. They are asked whether to perform on Sat. morning around 9:30...or around 2:00 in afternoon. Then we fill in the other times with close-up performances by volunteers. In the past, I have "performed" by demoing some magic effects for a buddy that is a dealer for his magic shop. We usually have about 10 Magic Shop Dealers each year.
Late on Fri and Sat nights after the shows, and the Dealers room is closed, many of us mingle around the big common room at the lodge and perform close-up magic for nonmagicians, or swap tips and encouragement to the new magicians. It's like one big happy family!
My work schedule keeps me from getting out to be around people to "do my magic". However, there were many suckers down there that I was able to entertain. Truthfully, it was probably the first time in many months that I actually "had fun" with other people!
Here are a few pictures from this year.