Lovers of legerdemain, practitioners of prestidigitation, converts to conjuring, savants of sleight of hand. In short these folks dabble in the arts arcane. Since 1994 the International Brotherhood of Magicians, Ring 45 (a sufficiently hocus-pocus moniker), has presented its annual convention each fall at the Hotel Formerly Known as the Radisson Aventura Beach Resort. Attendance at the two-day event is limited to the 200 or so semipro or amateur magicians -- mostly guys who bag groceries by day and palm coins by night. If you're serious about learning
the tricks, and not putting on a dorky mask and exposing
the tricks on Fox while the bald dude from The X-Files
makes bad jokes, you're welcome to pay the $65 registration fee and partake of the booths, lectures, and seminars, and find out all about false bottoms, mirrors, wires, and twins. The general public is welcome to attend the Saturday-night gala event (twenty bucks, please), which takes place in the delightfully faded red-velvet splendor of the hotel's Persian Room theater. The big show features as many as six performers from as far away as Israel, Spain, Canada, and Kendall. This year it takes place October 15, 16, and 17, and if you really want to creep yourself out, watch the movie Magic
, starring Anthony Hopkins and a dummy, the night before.