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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » If right you win, if wrong you lose... » » Three Shell Game: Carnivals? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Special user
Toronto, Canada
888 Posts

Profile of ImpromptuBoy
Hi Everyone.
I've heard that the shell game has been played in carnivals too. Has anyone played the shell game in a carnival?
I'd love to hear your experiences.
Thank you.
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Inner circle
Bar Harbor, ME
2191 Posts

Profile of drwilson
I have done Fast and Loose with play money at a fair as a draw to my booth at which I sell slum magic, fortunes, and peeks at the Feejee Mermaid. The first year I did the fair, the bunko guy from the county flashed his badge and wanted to see what I did. Since he was the bunko guy, I did Fast and Loose. He could see that I was OK and harmless. If you do the shell game at a carnival, I strongly recommend that you do it for play money as a draw to another attraction, or that you do it at a charity casino night where it is understood that you are a flim-flam guy. If you do it for real money at a carnival where people think they have a chance, you might very well have a chance to practice your handcuff escape.


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Inner circle
6036 Posts

Profile of bishthemagish
I have done the shell game at fairs and festivals all over Illinois. It was part of my close up act. The cops always come by to check you out.

If you are not doing it for money and you are hired by the fair or festival you shouldn't have any problems.

Except performing it outside in the sun, wind and sometimes rain.
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Whit Haydn
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5449 Posts

Profile of Whit Haydn
I worked in a Carnival during the summer when an undergraduate. Three-card monte and the shell game were both occasionally played by some of the guys, usually in a game joint, like the balloon and darts. The sucker would be down a few bucks, and then induced to play for "free" to draw other people over.

This would inevitably become a conflict when the operator claimed the sucker owed him money for playing. To settle everything, the operator would try to induce the sucker into a game of monte or shells.

This always happened when things were slow, and there was no one around. If the sucker went for the cops, the operator was nowhere to be found, and someone else was operating the joint--someone who had just "fired" the missing guy for gambling.
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Regular user
Memphi, on the Mighty Muddy
189 Posts

Profile of constantine
U[ through the mid fiftiers carivals carried a War Attrosities show. A small tent with to banners of lurid battlefield carage and signs promising POW tourtue or nazi atttrositys or horror on the western front.Inside would be a couple of over size blow-ups from the mens action magazines of the time and enough bayonetts and machineguns and uniforms and maybe a replica tiger cage and chains to satisfy the banners to any ten year old.
The gee on this joint was a sign on the ticket box thhat said veterans free.When Mr veteran wint in he would meet a large frindly man with a VFW pin in his lapel.After some glad handing and exchanging names and branches of service,his new best frind would inquire if the vet was looking for some real action.If by chance he was the steer would escout the vet and his wallet around back to the nut mob and insert him into a little three act play already in progress,where the gaji was the onnly one who didn't know his lines.Check out Ganzo DVD at School for Scounderals(link above)for the real,real work on this con.
Constatine 49%er
“The way of the transgressor is hard—to quit.”
—Jefferson Randolph “Soapy” Smith
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