FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: (April 3, 2019)
Organization: IBM Ring 386
Phone Number: 269-503-5128
Web Site: http://magic-festival.com/
The village of Colon hosts full day of live entertainment
COLON: The snow has vanished, the robins have returned to Michigan and Colon, the self professed Magic Capital of the World, is launching its fifth annual 31 Flavors of Magic festival on Saturday, April 27.
It must be spring.
31 Flavors of Magic is a unique spring festival that turns the entire village of Colon (all two or three blocks of it) into a Midway of Magic, with each location and storefront hosting its own diverse taste of magic and mystery. All of the restaurants, all of the bars, the magic shops, the library, a church, the grange and more will be participating venues. Visitors can enjoy close-up magic, cabaret magic, stage shows, gospel magic, mentalism, street performers, kids’ shows, classic manipulation acts and more simply by walking out one door and into another.
The event is hosted by Colon’s local magic club, the International Brotherhood of Magicians Ring 386. Member and organizer Ron Carnell said the name of the event is appropriate because there are so many different kinds of magic available throughout the festival.
“Magic is a performance art just like music,” explained Carnell, “And it’s every bit as diverse as music, too. One of our goals is to expose people to as many different facets of our art form as we can. Of course our primary goal is to make sure everyone has fun.”
According to Carnell, there will be thirty-two shows offered throughout the day, plus walk-around magic at several restaurants, performed by fifteen different entertainers.
Linda Rehmeyer lives in Colon and said she attended an earlier festival with two friends. “We had a lot of fun,” added Rehmeyer. Martha Graham posted on Facebook to say, “All the magicians were awesome! Everyone that I saw was having a great time.” Tim Granger of Coldwater brought seven kids to the event reported, “We’re having an excellent time. The kids love it. So, yea, it’s been a great day.”
Perhaps the most fun comment came from Tim Carlson, a magician from Las Vegas now living in Bay City. Carlson said, “A friend of mine asked me how the 31 Flavors of Colon was… I almost wet myself.”
“This will be our fifth and probably final 31 Flavors festival,” said Carnell. “We’ve accomplished everything we set out to do, introducing thousands of people throughout the Midwest both to Colon and to all of the many exciting kinds of magic. It’s time our magic club started looking for new things to explore.”
Colon, Michigan, with a population of just over 1100 people, is an ideal venue for the 31 Flavors of Magic festival. The small village is widely recognized as the Magic Capital of the World throughout America and Europe, an appellation dating back more than eighty years.
It all started in the midst of the Roaring Twenties when already world-famous stage magician Harry Blackstone bought property on Sturgeon Lake and spent his summers there for many years. Blackstone was one of the most famous magicians of his era, on a par with Houdini or Thurston, and like a magnet drew many other famous entertainers to the area. His son, Harry Blackstone Jr., was raised in Colon and, thanks to television, eventually became even more famous than his father.
Colon’s reputation as a magic Mecca was further cemented when Percy Abbott visited Blackstone in 1927, married a local girl soon after, and eventually founded Abbott’s Magic Novelty Company in 1933. Abbott’s quickly became the largest and most predominant supplier of magic in the world. In 1934 Abbott sponsored the first Magic Get-together. More than eighty years later, the Get-Together in August is still the cornerstone of the Colon year, drawing magicians from all over the world.
Today, there are three magic shops in little Colon, which is more brick and mortar magic shops than you’ll find in most states. Many local business, like Illusions Hair Care and Magic City Hardware, have adopted the magic theme. In the local cemetery there are more magicians buried, some world famous, some not so much, than in any other cemetery in the world. Embedded sporadically in the downtown sidewalks are 16-by-16-inch bronze stars comprising Colon’s Magic Walk of Fame and celebrating famous magicians who have had ties to the village. The high school athletic teams are known as the Magi and are usually accompanied on field or court by a six-foot rabbit mascot named Hare E. Blackstone. Colon clearly takes its long history of magic very seriously.
WHAT: 31 Flavors of Magic all-day festival.
WHEN: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, April 27.
WHERE: Various locations throughout Colon.
COST: Early Registration tickets are $5 for children, $10 for adults and $30 for a family pack. Tickets the day of the event are $8 for kids, $15 for adults and $35 for a family pack.
INFO: For a show schedule, a map of locations and to purchase Early Registration tickets, go to www.magic-festival.com. For more information, call (269) 432-4017.
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