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Columns

St. Charles Park District magic class goes beyond learning tricks

Is your child in awe of magic? Would they like to learn tricks to impress their family and friends? Registration is now open for magic classes taught by magician Gary Kantor offered through the St. Charles Park District.

With two classes available this spring session, children ages 5-13, can register for one or both classes, held March 23 and May 14. Students are broken into groups and taught at an age appropriate level. Even if your child has attended the magic class in past sessions, Kantor encourages them to attend again, as he keeps his material fresh offering different tricks and skills to build upon.

During class, children will learn five different tricks using cards, ropes, coins, mind reading and more.

“It’s a unique class and a fun art form that most kids can’t learn anywhere else,” said Kantor, who has taught magic at the park district for more than 10 years.

As opposed to buying a magic kit at the store, seeing a trick performed first-hand with hands-on instruction goes a long way. Kantor will perform the trick, then children practice until they have mastered the trick.

“He has such a passion for magic which comes out in class, always patient and striving to ensure every child leaves knowing how to perform every trick,” said Youth Programs Supervisor Alex Weidner.

As a school social worker by day, Kantor said he has seen the affect learning magic has had on all kids, including those with special needs. They build confidence and self-esteem; learn self-discipline from continuously practicing a trick; presentation skills as they perform tricks in front of an audience; and more. “There are so many intrinsic skills and values that come from learning magic,” Kantor said.

Weidner agreed the class goes beyond the tricks. “Magic inspires curiosity and builds upon and expands creativity and imagination in general.”

Register for the spring magic classes at www.stcparks.org/register or call Alex Weidner at 630-513-4391. For more information about Gary Kantor, visit http://www.garykantor.com/

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