The sun is setting on the winter 2011 and new horizons ahead

Winter season #34 is now ‘in the can’.

While it was a strange year for snowfall~hardly any here in Basalt, but LOTS up in the resort, it turned out to be a great winter for me. For the past several years, I have done an afternoon show at the Silvertree Hotel in the Conservatory, a difficult venue in that it was a long narrow room – a bit like working in a trailer. This year the ‘powers that be’ moved me into another of their properties, the Wildwood Hotel lobby. This was a better venue (still flawed but much more workable). The first performance was revelatory. I found that if you look out that window right there, you can see the Tower Building. As I gazed at the crowd, I saw that clearly half the room had actually BEEN in the Tower at some point over the years. So I asked the crowd if they would like to hear the story of how the Tower came about. After an enthusiastic affirmative response, I began to explain how Crow, Paul and Michael P Shore arrived here in this magical place, how John Denver became involved, how Bob Sheets introduced the magic bar in the summer of 1975. People seem to be genuinely interested in all these old stories and I am only too willing to tell them again. I am also introducing some new magic that seems to support the stories.

For the last 12 weeks, I honed and polished the material. I added and eliminated different pieces. Wishing that I could do it once a day  rather than once a week, I did what I could to make this into an entertaining romp through the early days of Snowmass. I had some wonderful advice coming from Eric Mead, who of course was a big part of the recent history. Nearly everyone who saw it had suggestions and ideas. I sorted through all of them and, while it still has a ways to go, I am thrilled with how it is developing.

I firmly believe that this is the ‘next step’ for me. As much as I love working the bar, it is a demanding venue that has a variable payoff. I am liking the idea of being able to present this to an attentive crowd who will have paid to see it. They are there at the start, sit and watch the show and then file out. The randomness of the bar, with people coming and going, being called to dinner, the unruly hyped up kids are all NOT present for this. The potential for this is limitless. I can see a venue that would seat about 50-60 ppl and be a real feature for the folks who come and visit us here.

I will keep you posted as to the development of the presentation I am calling ‘Secret Destinations’.

The Stonebridge was a tremendous crossroads of “people from everytime”. Countless faces from the past swirled past me all year long. It was heartwarming to see so many folks, some of whom I have seen every year for 34 years. Astounding.

I am also ‘finding my voice’ with the  “name thing”. One of the magic stunts I am known for, comes from the trick where I have a bunch of cards selected. They are shuffled back in the deck and then I attempt them find their cards and call each person by name. I am a firm believer that the use of a person’s name is one of the most powerful ways that we have to connect with other people.  I have put together a session on how to do exactly that, connect with people by using their names. My audiences seem to really respond well to this piece. Yet another way for groups to use my talents.

So, though I am moving a bit slower and it seems like I take more naps these days, I am actually quite busy.

On an upcoming trip to Texas, one of my chores will be to pack up Kati who, though she had a fine time and a productive year in Texas, has decided to move a little closer to home and transfer to CU Boulder. I couldn’t be happier about that. She is a whole lot closer to home, she is instate, and since Mack went there, we have a lot of friends ‘on the ground’ there for her to connect up with. Southwestern was a great ‘first year of college’ school but she missed the mountains and this makes me warm inside.

Life moves on whether we like it or not.

Thanks for your continued interest in my life and times.

One Response to The sun is setting on the winter 2011 and new horizons ahead

  • Doc,

    So glad to hear things are happening for you in the good old Snowmass area. Julie Wood and her family came there for Christmas and said they really felt that Tom was with them as well. We haven’t been to the area in many years and we do miss it in the summer. I still remember John Denver directing me to the bar to see you perform, which started my journey in magic.
    Thank you for all you have done to make magic entertaining.

    Richard & Cheryl Payne

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