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Topic: Birthdays Ideas at Restaurants
Message: Posted by: CurtWaltermire (Dec 17, 2007 08:04PM)
As most of you already know, I'm a fairly new user on the forum, so please forgive me if I'm addressing something that has already been addressed in the past (especially if it was in great detail). I did a little digging around and didn't find the topic, or anything that really resembled it, so I just thought I'd ask.

I am preparing to aggressively market myself doing restaurant magic in the city where I live, and have been enjoying the discussions here. I was in a restaurant the other night for my oldest daughter's sixteenth birthday, and the restaurant (like most restaurants worth their salt) did something special for her birthday. I began to wonder what I would do had I been performing in that restaurant.

Do any of you do anything SPECIAL for people that are celebrating their birthdays at the restaurants, outside of the planned, private-party-at-the-restaurant kind of thing? Do you give out special, take-home sorts of things, or do you simply let the performance be special in and of itself? Like everything else, I'll come up with ideas of my own anyway, but I'd like some input from some of you other pros!
Message: Posted by: Magic_Steve (Dec 17, 2007 09:31PM)
Hmm...I might bust out something different, that I don't do for the other tables. Maybe the chop cup or something, but nothing to unusual. One routine I've done twice though, is the Hershey kiss routine.

It uses a TT and a bit of ingredients. Anyways, simply have a Hershey kiss palmed, and load a tt into that hand. Put a bit of foil and sugar into the tt, give it a bit of a rub, then show it's turned into a Hershey kiss. One thing I've started doing is in my bag, I have a match box filled with precut sheets of foil, and some sugar packets in there as well. Takes me about 30 seconds to get them out and set, and I'm good to go.

The kisses are kept in a ziplock baggie in a seperate section, so not to squash them. Both times I've done this (to 2 girls under 12), I've gotten a $10 tip and a $5 tip. Not bad considering it's a relatively simple routine that doesn't need much practice/rehearsing and takes all of 20 seconds. :)

Good Luck!
Steve
Message: Posted by: Josh Chaikin (Dec 17, 2007 10:00PM)
For Birthdays, I'll typically find out the person's name in advance, and write some birthday wishes on the back of an odd-colored playing card (works best with red), then launch into some standard magic and casually ask if anything special is being celebrated that night, then "magically" change the card. Michael Close has some nice work on this, though I don't think his has the color changing aspect.
Message: Posted by: pepka (Dec 18, 2007 01:11AM)
Both good ideas. Although Steve, if you're making chocolate kisses, maybe you should have something that represents raw chocolate. Scotty York uses a coffee bean that he passes off as a cocoa bean in his candy kiss machine. That might be a neat addition. Sorry if I sound like an expert, but I seriously did grow up in Hershey, PA.

Here's what I do for Birthdays. I perform almost exclusively with cards. When I find out it is someone's birthdy, I pull out a low value card and write a birthday greeting on the card and perform Daryl's Birthday Card trick. However, I think the shuffling sequence he uses kind of gives the method away. I faro the card to the proper position and I'm set to go. I then do a very brief ambitious routine with the birthday card, and reveal it in my wallet, shoe or whatever. When I present it to the person as a souvenier, I have 2 seperate lines, one for adults one for kids that assures they keep it. For kids I normally tell them it's a magic card and if they put it under their pillow, it will turn into $5. If it's a table full of adults, I tell them it's a lucky card.....put it under their pillow and they just might get lucky tonight.
Message: Posted by: Magic_Steve (Dec 18, 2007 05:29AM)
Pepka,

that's a good idea about the cocoa bean...I might have to start trying that. Thanks a lot man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ;)
Message: Posted by: Bad to the Balloon (Dec 18, 2007 06:38AM)
The effect is this:
Have B-day person pick a card, do your normal ambitious card routine, have them sign the card face. lose there card in deck. Ribbon spread face up. Ask them if today is something special for them. tell them to re-take their card. Look at back ..... it says happy birthday (fill in the blank)

PM me if your interested.
Message: Posted by: Keith Raygor (Dec 18, 2007 07:13AM)
"THE WORLD’S BEST BIRTHDAY TRICK" by Eric Henning. Bring out a bottle of “bubbly” to celebrate. It’s a mini-bottle of champagne. Blow a bubble. It turns into a solid bubble. Give away to special person with a very special message Eric provides that will bring some to happy tears.
Message: Posted by: CurtWaltermire (Dec 18, 2007 04:15PM)
Thank you all, fellow magi. Great ideas.

I'm of the mind that the special presentation should differ, of course, not only with the style of restaurant, but with whether or not the person celebrating their birthday is a man, woman, child, etc. The Hershey's Kiss routine and the Eric Henning effect sound like wonderful ideas for the ladies. Producing birthday greetings on the backs of playing cards is a great idea also that could be done for virtually anyone.

I'm curious, Magic Steve, do you add the little touch of placing that thin, little white ribbon into the mix as well before you produce the Kiss intact? I think that would be quite dramatic, especially if you could keep it in view the entire time.

Do many of you find that it is usually better to pretend as though you are unaware that it is the person's birthday? I don't really see where that is necessary, but maybe I'm missing something. I realize, however, that it depends what effect you are trying to...well...AFFECT.

I'm also exercising ideas for graduation parties, but I don't want to get too far ahead of myself. Restaurants are inundated with graduates and their families at that time of year in the late Spring, and I want to be thinking of some cool ideas for that as well. But for now, back to the birthdays...

Thanks again fellas. You're all great!
Message: Posted by: Rich B. (Dec 19, 2007 06:31AM)
Here is something I use for every special occasion. I perform the message on the back of a card routine that is mentioned above. If its Fathers day, Valentines day, Christmas, Weddings (the bride and grooms name appears in a heart)etc. It makes it seem like I created this trick just for the event...when in fact it is the same trick.

I got the idea from Richard Sanders on a trick he does called "Named".

When I'm performing at strolling events or restaurants, I'm always ready to perform for a birthday. The gimmick (D.B. card and prepared birthday card are slipped into the cellophane of my deck). If I find out its someone's birthday, I slip out the cards from the cellophane when removing the deck from the box.

My Patter is:
Oh its your birthday! Did you get that birthday card I sent you? No? Well...thats because I didn't send you one. I really wanted to...I just didn't know your address...but how about if I send you one right now magically...would that be OK?

They sign a card. I then show the back of the card, give a little shake, and Happy Birthday from Richie B. visually appears on the back of the card...and I hand them there signed card to keep.

For Christmas I dedicate an entire deck with about 20 cards on the bottom of the deck that are prepared with Merry Christmas from Richie B. There is virtually no reset(except for a slip cut when I put the deck away). I can repeat this effect often..."Did you get the Christmas card I sent you?" It gets great reactions.

Richie B.
Message: Posted by: Slappy (Dec 19, 2007 12:04PM)
Diamond Jim Tyler has a great effect perfect for birthdays and leaves the B'Day person with a souvenir. He calls it Birthday Bill. It can be found on the DVD Pockets Full Of Miracles
Slappy
Message: Posted by: Robert Apodaca (Dec 20, 2007 01:54AM)
I don't do anything different for birthdays except make sure the birthday person signs the card in ambitious card.
Message: Posted by: Paul (Dec 28, 2007 02:04PM)
Do "The World's Oddest Card Trick" from my book "Small But Deadly" but have the final card wishing them Happy Birthday. Printed cards like this with a Bicycle back can be obtained from Card Collection in the U.K.

Paul.
Message: Posted by: kerpa (Dec 29, 2007 10:47PM)
How about Unshuffled by Gertner, with the person's name as the revelation?
Or of course, Daryl has on one of his Revelation DVDs the Birthday spelling trick - which I have set up with a Faro.
Message: Posted by: magicshayne (Jan 4, 2008 11:04AM)
A good routine I sometimes do is labbeled but I just right aon the label of the bottle congratualtions I prepare a couple of bottles b4 I perform if any body has a special reason to celabrate birthday anniversay ect this fits well hope this helps regards shayne
Message: Posted by: magicshayne (Jan 4, 2008 11:05AM)
A good routine I sometimes do is labbeled but I just right aon the label of the bottle congratualtions I prepare a couple of bottles b4 I perform if any body has a special reason to celabrate birthday anniversay ect this fits well hope this helps regards shayne
Message: Posted by: MAKMagic (Jan 4, 2008 07:42PM)
I do a fun effect for special occasions\repeat or special guests...Michael Close's "A trick for O'Brien" I prep a couple cards and keep them handy for if and when the opportunity arises "Happy Birthday <space for name>!" "Happy Anniversary<space for name> !" "Thanks for coming to Pagliaccis <space for name>!" "Happy Holidays <space for name>!" etc...

Great effect, great responses...LASTING Memory and souvenier for the guest.
Message: Posted by: CurtWaltermire (Jan 5, 2008 12:56AM)
Thanks for all the ideas, fellow Magi.

Keep 'em comin'!
Message: Posted by: Dustin Baker (Jan 5, 2008 08:27PM)
My birthday effect comes from Jay Sankey's Bigger Finish.

I use the same gimmick and concept but instead of just having the card face it has the card face with "Happy Birthday" Printed on it. I can then write in the name of the guest.

Since multiple birthdays can occur nightly (what with free will and all), you might want to print-up several of the gimmick and store them in your close-up case.
Message: Posted by: Isramagia (Jan 8, 2008 07:07AM)
I carry a few paper hat tears and have the birthday person do the tearing. I find it works well for all ages and they get a magical birthday hat to remember the occasion and the restaurant.
Izzy
Message: Posted by: ShaunRobison (Jan 10, 2008 03:53PM)
[quote]
On 2007-12-18 06:29, Magic_Steve wrote:
Pepka,

that's a good idea about the cocoa bean...I might have to start trying that. Thanks a lot man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ;)
[/quote]

Just for a bit of info. On my DVD "The Art and MAgic of Shaun Robison" there is one effect called "THE KISS TRICK" and it is almost what you described. Although it is a bit more detailed then just putting a piece of foil and some sugar into your hand. Might I suggest you check it out. In fact everything on the DVD's are effects I use on a regular basis in my 5 nights a week gig.

Doc Eason's birthday card trick is a must too!!!!. I have a few other ideas that I will be sharing soon!!!

Have a great day!!
Shaun
Message: Posted by: Review King (Jan 20, 2008 09:45PM)
[quote]
On 2008-01-10 16:53, ShaunRobison wrote:
[quote]
On 2007-12-18 06:29, Magic_Steve wrote:
Pepka,

that's a good idea about the cocoa bean...I might have to start trying that. Thanks a lot man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ;)
[/quote]

Just for a bit of info. On my DVD "The Art and MAgic of Shaun Robison" there is one effect called "THE KISS TRICK" and it is almost what you described. Although it is a bit more detailed then just putting a piece of foil and some sugar into your hand. Might I suggest you check it out. In fact everything on the DVD's are effects I use on a regular basis in my 5 nights a week gig.

Doc Eason's birthday card trick is a must too!!!!. I have a few other ideas that I will be sharing soon!!!

Have a great day!!
Shaun
[/quote]

More Shaun Robison on the way? This is BIG!!!!!!
Message: Posted by: nonvpro (Jan 23, 2008 09:25PM)
For Birthdays I do my standard ACR ending with card to sealed envelope. Inside the envelope I place a Birthday card I created in Microsoft Publisher. Its a generic birthday card. When they tear open the envelope they find the birthday card with their signed playing card inside.
Message: Posted by: deadcatbounce (Apr 2, 2008 07:10AM)
I can certainly vouch for the coffee bean as chocolate been bit with the Hershey. Little bit disappointed tho.. I thought this was MY idea! It occurred to me when I was in a coffee shop and there were a load of beans around. I took a few, thinking that perhaps I could use them for something, and on a flight to Holland, the idea of "cooking" with a TT arrived. I'm in Ireland, so we don't get Hershey kisses, so I picked up a load of suitable wrapped sweets and worked it out, with sugar, beans, and the wrapper. It goes VERY well. Another reason for not using Hershey.. people are very divided about the taste. Some think it's great - some think it's disgusting. Last thing I want to do is leave a bad taste in the mouth........ :)
Of course, if there are other kids at the table.. you have to give them something also...

Cheers,

DCB