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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The Society of American Magicians! » » Magic Summit in Vegas (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

CraigCPass
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Someone please post a review of the recent Magic Summit in Vegas. I was unable to attend and would like to know more about their new concept in improving the magic club experience.
Ba Ba Booey
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I'd like to hear about that, too. What were some of the take-aways that folks got?
weidhaas
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Hi guys - I think the Summit was a very good success. Everyone went away with lots of ideas to implement at their club. Something like 44 Assemblies were represented. The main Pillars we focused on was Making it a friendly atmosphere, Keeping it fun, and make sure the meeting is informative - letting everyone go away with something they have learned. I have specific items that I want to see my local club implement, but there was so much information, I can't go over all of it here. There is supposed to be some minutes of the Summit that are still being transcribed. I would suggest reaching out to you Deputy or Regional VP to get the "official" highlights.

Also, at the Philadelphia SAM Convention, we will have a session that will be for Assembly officers and others to get debriefed on the Summit ideas and continue the conversation.
Ba Ba Booey
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Was the idea of leadership touched upon? I know of a few clubs lacking in that area.
Ba Ba Booey
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Apparently not. What were some of the important take-aways that people took away? I mean, other than having a friendly atmosphere and keeping it fun.

If I were to attend an unfriendly club or a club that was no fun, I wouldn't attend a second time. Can someone let us know "a few" of the many ideas that were discussed?

Thanks! B. Booey
billmarq
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I was not at the summit, but I know Rick Allen suggested that clubs have an "open house" night maybe twice a year, where the public is invited to attend. There should be a few short performances to entertain, but the main thing is to have membership applications handy and to encourage interested persons to join. Rick was part of a club that used this method to boost membership in the past.
"Bill, you're a peach. A real peach." - Brad
Ba Ba Booey
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Thanks, Bill. You're a peach!

Does anyone else have any ideas that they thought were useful, helpful, or brilliant?

Thanks in advance to anyone else who responds.
kekoa1
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While I attended the Summit...I thought those who might be interested in reading more about what went on might like to pick up a copy of the January 2015 Magic Magazine. There is a nice write up within that issue.
Ba Ba Booey
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I read the article in MAGIC, but it was a general information article about the conference. It didn't really describe what members took away from the summit. What did you get out of it, Kekoa?
kekoa1
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Ba Ba Booey,

Sorry for the late reply. I really enjoyed the Summit in Vegas. There were many ideas presented and input from a wide variety of club members from across the Country. The main thing I took away from the Summit was to always be thinking of different ways to energize your club. I've done "themed" meetings in the past and they were just "ok". After the Summit, I've incorporated a theme and a "Mini-Contest" associated with that particular theme...and member participation has increased dramatically! Then again, I offer magic prizes for those who participate...but overall, members are doing more magic because of it. I learned to be more creative when thinking about the next meeting. Another thing I've incorporated was to limit the "business" portion of the meeting. Previously, we'd sit and discuss for almost half the meeting...mostly due to not having control of the members who just wanted to talk about themselves. Now, I've taken control...started using a mic...moved the business portion to the start of the meeting...and only spoke of pertinent information regarding the club in general. Total time for this is usually less than 10 minutes. The rest of the time can be for MAGIC! I've also started using social media to keep members in the loop and also let other people know that our club exists. These are just a few of the ideas that I took away from the Summit.
I guess the main thing..for me anyway...was to be more creative, ask others for help...and to give my members and club 200% and to keep trying different ideas. The Summit didn't have any real answers...when it comes to energizing your magic club...rather...it was all of the people who attended, that posed a billion questions regarding what other clubs were doing right and wrong. It was this discussion between club members that really inspired me to take my club to a different level. And I have to say that so far, it's worked! I'm glad to have been a part of the Summit. So...to sum it up...keep asking the question? What can I do to help elevate my club?

Aloha!

-Kekoa
Ba Ba Booey
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Thanks, Kekoa! From the sound of it, my local club is doing well. We keep the business down to 10 minutes or less, and we have 100% participation, whether it is from a performance, a review, or sharing info.

Trying out new things to keep the club energized is a great priority. I like the idea of having contests, too. Thanks for your reply.
fredr500
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One immediate change implemented at our club was raising the dues from $15 to $25 annually and serving pizza and drinks at the meetings. "Breaking bread"is supposed to encourage fellowship.

To me the jury is still out. People did not remember in January so everyone ate beforehand and there was a lot left. February was a little better, then in March the officer didn't have time to get the food so there was nothing, Those that arrived hungry left hungrier.

It will be a learning process,I'll wait a while before passing judgement.

Some of the other ideas that were discussed generated excitement when presented but have yet to be implemented.
CraigCPass
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I want to thank everyone who has posted ideas on how to improve their club meetings. The first thing that I tried was to have an opening magic act (5 min). This way if we have a new guest the first thing they see is magic, then I open the meeting with magic news. So far, the reaction has been positive to this new magic opener idea. I also shortened the club and local news by sticking to a written agenda.

I think the key to success is to keep the meeting moving at a steady pace. Invite interesting people to present new ideas and teach people new effects. When we get half way through the meeting, we take a short ten minute break. Anything longer than ten minutes makes the second half the meeting night run late and people start getting frustrated.

Next month, I'm going to introduce another idea for the talent portion of our meeting. We are going to put names in a hat for those magicians that would like to perform. I will select three magicians to present their effects at the next monthly meeting. This will give them time to practice their effects and then I will promote their upcoming appearance on our website.

Now I have to figure out a way to keep the younger members coming back to our meetings. Since our room is set-up parlor style, it is not conducive to having card jam sessions. This seems to be what most of our younger members want to do, instead of listening to older men talk about Magic History or who is sick in the hospital. They like the teach-in portion of our meeting, but that is usually stage magic. So, I'm thinking of adding a card jam session outside our meeting room in the area where we meet for dinner (iHop). I don't think that eight people missing from our meeting room will cause a big impact to our meeting room attendance. What I'm hoping is that the word will get out in the magic community that the local S.A.M. group has a card jam session once a month. The benefits for those younger members is that some of the more experience card experts will want to join in on the card sessions.

I'm going to give it a try.
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