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Dennis Michael
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Inner circle
Southern, NJ
6018 Posts

Profile of Dennis Michael
One of the best ways seminar lecturers make extra money is through "backroom sales". This is a term speakers are familiar with. They sell products after their lecture, usually cassette tapes of the lecture or related tapes to the lecture. Many books related to Successful Seminars discuss this topic.

Magicians too, do this. In the dealer's room they have a table setup with products they sell, in addition to their lecture notes. Well, elsewhere here on the Café there are discussions related to C.J. Johnsons Instant Author books on magic and Birthday parties. These too are backroom sale products.

I stopped by the "Dollar Tree" store. This is a store where everything is a dollar or less. They had four different Wizard Coloring and Activity Books with a price tag of $7.95 US $8.95 Canada on them and others for $4.95 US. I couldn't print this 176 page book for $1.00 so I bought them all. Now if I sell them for $2.00 each I double my investment. It is another income stream. There are no magic tricks in them but many puzzles and activities for the kids to do.

While I was there, they had several other products which could also be sold for more than the $1.00 price listing. Understand that these are close-out sales so it is unlikely more will be available. I've could have spent $1,000 dollars easily in items that could be resold during fundraisers or after show sales in certain situations.

Now they had a blinking Reindeer Nose which I use with my Egg Bag Routine (all year). Now, if I did this routine at a lecture or at my local SAM/IBM meeting contest, it would be a sell out after the performance. It plays well and looks good. I also use another in the Big Red Nose routine that just came out from Samuel Patrick Smith. (It comes with a sponge red nose.) The Red Blinking Nose has a Greater impact, then the sponge. Again, I use the blinking nose with a seance cloth with reindeer ears. It's just funny.

Check out you local dollar store, there are items which can be used in your act, if you use your imagination.

Here is another dollar store creation. I have a beat-up Temple Screen. It got wet and the cardboard has spots all over it. It was ready for the trash heap. I put a picture of Santa on the Budda picture side and a picture of a Christmas Tree on the other side which had the oriental writing. Cost nothing because I used my color printer and high quality photo glossy paper. Now I bought red and green garland and filled the pocket. The effect is simple. To Christmas music, I produce the garland and placed it across my table top. At the end of the production I pickup the garland and steal a two foot singing Christmas tree, concealed by the garland, which is produced to the surprise of the audience.

The Christmas tree was $9.00 and the Garland $4.00. Great trick and powerful production, with the help of our friendly neighborhood Dollar Store.
Dennis Michael
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Regular user
106 Posts

Profile of mnmagic
Cool Ideas...

Thanks. I am heading there soon!

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Columbus, OH
685 Posts

Profile of Andini
If you ever do magic classes or want to included playing cards in goodie bags, you can get them at the dollar store dirt cheap. I get two for a dollar and they still work really well. When I walk in there, I pretty much buy every pack they own.

I once picked out a ton of "Wizard Wands" that look just like normal magic wands at a going out of business "Factory Card Outlet" sale. Normally they cost 99 cents (not too bad) but I got them for a quarter a piece. As you guessed, I bought 'em all.

Last week, Walgreens had a "dollar bin" and in them I found all kinds of junk but hidden among it all, were magic sets. They aren't huge but look nice, are colorful, and contain 15 tricks. I bought all that they had.

There is a HUGE amount of dirt-cheap stuff just lying around looking for a home. All you have to do is look and you can save (and make) a whole lot of money!

-Andini Smile
Dennis Michael
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Inner circle
Southern, NJ
6018 Posts

Profile of Dennis Michael
Dollar Stores are great places to find a bargain.

At a Christmas Cub Scout event, I sold blinking reindeer noses for $2 and gave the profits to the scouts. I sold everyone I owned!

Goodie bag Stuff can be found here at these thrift stores.
Dennis Michael
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Inner circle
Harris Deutsch
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Profile of harris
I agree Dollar Stores are great places for magic props.

Other Nearly Normal Magic Stores include.

Hobby Lobby, Michaels Crafts, Garage Sales Estate Sales, Thrift Shops.

I love going on Artist Outings to discover new things to share.

This is an idea I learned in The Artist Way
a "Spiritual Journey" to get to know a very important person. YOU!

Anyone else use it?? I believe the author is Cameron????

Harris Deutsch
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
music, magic and marvelous toys
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Eternal Order
Philadelphia, PA
15111 Posts

Profile of magic4u02
Den and all:
These are all great ideas and I too visit dollar stores every chance that I get. They often have some great items that you can get and use for after show sales or even to offer as handouts for b-day parties for an additional small fee.

I have even found dollar stores that sell stripper decks. Of course I bought every one they had. They also come with 15 tricks you can do with them. I use this and demo it in my shows and people love them.

I also like places like Oriental Trading Company. From them you can get some great low cost items like magic wands and tophats that the kids seem to really like.

Den: It is funny you mentioned the wizard activity books. My wife saw them around us and we bought every copy they had. They are great and the kids really like them.

A while back Dollar Tree was elling small 3 trick magic sets that looks just incredible. I bought as many as they had, but have not seen them around much any more. They were great.

Has anyone else seen any recent dollar store "finds"? If so please share with the group. Thanks.

I use after sales items after my fair shows I am doing a lot of this summer. It is a great extra steam of income and every trick gets my name out to the public through the flyers that each trick comes with.
Kyle Peron

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