Sunday, June 16, 2024

Festival of Illusions – Lincoln City Cultural Center

LINCOLN CITY – Attention magic lovers, juggle maniacs, bubble aficionados and spring break families looking for weatherproof fun: we’ve got you covered at the Lincoln City Cultural Center. The LCCC, at 540 NE Hwy. 101 inside the historic Delake School, will be home to the 2018 Festival of Illusions, with nightly magic shows and art workshops at family-friendly prices March 25 through April 5.

Festival of Illusions
The Amazing Bubble Man
Festival of Illusions - stefano iaboni
Stefano Iaboni

This year’s schedule includes two nights of Jugglemania with Rhys Thomas, along with hypnotism by Joe Black, amazing feats of mentalism with Brian Ledbetter, physical comedy by the international performer Stefano Iaboni, and the festival premiere of Dr. Delusion’s Illusions. Families can enjoy old-fashioned magic by festival favorites Jeff Evans and Alexander, Master of Marvels, along with two nights with The Amazing Bubble Man, whose mastery of bubbles big and small are a marvel to us all – he’ll be performing in the auditorium on March 26 and 27.

Festival of Illusions - Brian Ledbetter
Brian Ledbetter

The Festival of Illusions is planned to coincide with two special weeks: the Oregon public schools’ spring break March 26-30, and the Washington public schools’ version April 2-6. “Don’t let it rain (or snow, or wind) on your family parade,” said executive director Niki Price. “Infuse your vacation with magic and wonder, through the Festival of Illusions.”

All evening shows begin at the same time: 7 pm, with doors open at 6:30 pm. Thanks to the festival’s premier sponsors, the Historic Anchor Inn and the Lincoln City Visitor & Convention Bureau, evening show tickets are $8 for youth ages 6-18, and $15 for adults 19 and older. Tickets are on sale now at the center’s website, (click “Buy Tickets”), by calling 541-994-9994, or in person at the Lincoln City Visitor Information Center, located inside the LCCC.

Members of the Lincoln City Cultural Center, which is a nonprofit arts and culture organization that relies upon donations from the public, will receive get $2 off every ticket they purchase. March is Membership Month, and it just takes a few minutes to join; for details, call 541-994-9994.

On Saturday, March 31, the LCCC and the Oregon Coast TODAY will present the Fool’s Day Cabaret, an evening of songs, dances, tricks, jokes, skits and music to raise money for the Lincoln City Warming Shelter – because homelessness is no joke. Tickets are $20, and showtime is 7 pm.

Young artists are invited to enjoy the drop-in Abracadabra Art Workshop offers guided projects and “free art” zones, for just $5 per person. This year, the workshop will be open from 1-4 pm from Monday, March 26, through Friday, March 30.

Other attractions at the LCCC include:

* The official Lincoln City Visitor Information Center & Gift Shop, where volunteers and staff provide brochures, information, and activity ideas for Spring Break entertainment all over the Oregon Coast. Maps, hats, coloring books, handmade gifts and coastal souvenirs, free Cape Foulweather Coffee for the adults and free mini-agates for the kids. It will be open from 9 am to 5 pm every day March 24-31, and April 2-9.

* The PJ Chessman Gallery, which during Spring Break will feature an exhibit of work by the students, teachers and parents of St. James Santiago School, called “Learning to Create.” See drawings, paintings, sculpture, textiles, printmaking, prose and illustrated books, all made by members of the St. James Santiago family. Open 9 am to 5 pm March 24-31 and April 2-9 (closed on Easter Sunday).

Learn more at or pick up the official Festival of Illusions 2018 program. Produced in conjunction with the Oregon Coast TODAY, the program will be available in stacks all over Lincoln City (and inserted in the March 23 edition of the TODAY). For details, call 541-994-9994.


Sunday, March 25     FESTIVAL KICKOFF with Dr. Delusion’s Illusions, 7 pm
This year’s festival will open with Dr. Delusions’ Comedy & Magic Show. The Doctor (aka Bob Whitlatch) has been performing on both small and large stages for over 25 years, and specializes in pleasing audiences of all ages with his own blend of fun and mystery. He’s been voted in as a lifetime member of the International Society of Magicians.

Monday, March 26 AND Tuesday, March 27        The Amazing Bubble Man, 7 pm

FOI 2018 presents the triumphant return of The Amazing Bubble Man, back by crazy and frenetic popular demand. The auditorium will be afloat with the bubble magic and comedy of Louis Pearl, aka the Amazing Bubble Man. Pearl is one of the world’s leading bubble-ologists, who has been thrilling audiences around the world for nearly 30 years, with the art, magic, science and fun of bubbles. He’s a favorite at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where he has enjoyed eight years of sell-out success. From square bubbles, bubbles inside bubbles, fog-filled bubbles, giant bubbles and even people inside bubbles, the Amazing Bubble Man conjures shrieks of laughter and gasps of amazement from all ages.

Wednesday, March 28          Mentalist Brian Ledbetter, 7 pm

Ace mentalist Brian Ledbetter makes jaws drop with his uncanny display of mindreading: predictions come true, thoughts are read and objects are moved without anyone touching them. Brian’s exciting and interactive show combines comedy and audience participation with truly remarkable feats of mentalism. He was a big hit I the 2017 festival, when he performed with magician Jason Andrews. Now he’s got his own solo show – prepare to be amazed.

Thursday, March 29             Alexander, Master of Marvels, 7 pm
Bring the whole family to see Alexander, Master of Marvels, with classics of magic and original tricks manipulating balls, bills, coins, cards, rope, rings and everyday objects. Things will appear, multiply, transform and vanish at his fingertips, and in the hands of the audience. Alexander’s presentation offers visual artistry, tasteful music and 19th century styling. Don’t worry. Someone WILL definitely be sawed in half.

Friday, March 30                  Stefano Iaboni, 7 pm
Born and raised in Rome, Italy, Stefano Iaboni trained in a professional circus school in Holland and spent 10 years working as an actor and comedian in Barcelona. Stefano will accompany you on an extraordinary journey that includes magic, juggling, comedy, volunteer participation, and everything in between. It’s a family-friendly show, with fun for all ages.

Saturday, March 31              The Fools Day Cabaret, 7 pm
The Festival of Illusions and the Oregon Coast TODAY are presenting this bi-inaugural evening of songs, dances, tricks, jokes, skits and music. You’re invited to enjoy two sets of entertainment, pie auction, joke contest and more. More details to come, but we know this much: It’s all in good fun, to raise money for the Lincoln City Warming Shelter – because homelessness is no joke. Tickets for this fundraiser are $20 in advance, $25 at the door. To audition, volunteer or learn more, call so-called talent coordinator Phyllis Thompson, 541-921-8731 or executive joke manager Patrick Alexander, 541-921-0413.

Sunday, April 1         FESTIVAL and LCCC CLOSED for Easter

Monday, April 2 AND Tuesday, April 3    Jugglemania by Rhys Thomas, 7 pm

Rhys Thomas defines juggling as, “dances with stuff.” The Wall Street Journal defines Rhys as being, “in touch with your inner buffoon.” Rhys learned to juggle in high school to impress a girl and then lost the girl and juggled to forget.  He now claims to have an M.F.A. (Master of Frivolous Arts). He paid off his college loans by street performing, then transitioned to stage shows to get out of the weather. To get into museums and schools, he created a show teaching the physics of juggling ( and to get into international festivals, he created his “tour de farce” of circus tricks called JuggleMania. Both shows work on so many levels that they’re often compared to Pixar movies. Since 1987, audiences on three continents have applauded Rhys Thomas’s hilarious “JuggleMania” show. Charmingly charismatic, absurdly versatile, and intelligently witty, Rhys combines the fast-paced world of stand-up comedy with the dexterous feats of the circus to create performances that have proven infallible in a wide variety of venues.

Wednesday, April 4              Jeff Evans, 7 pm

Jeff’s career in magic began at age 12, when he found a book on coin tricks at his grandparent’s house. Today, Jeff regularly performs for appreciative audiences throughout the Northwest, and he’s one of the Festival of Illusion’s favorite magicians. Fan favorites include “Sparky the Trained Chicken” and his “ridiculously dangerous” escape stunt from ropes, chains, and padlocks.  No wonder he was named the 2013 Seattle’s Funniest Magician and ParentMap Magazine’s 2013 “Golden Teddy Award” for Best Live Entertainment.

Thursday, April 5                FESTIVAL FINALE: Hypnotist Joe Black, 7 pm

The Festival of Illusions is proud to present an evening with Joe Black, a traveling magician who has is even better known as an expert hypnotist. Black was a televised finalist on “America’s Got Talent,” and was awarded the Seattle “Rising Star Award” two years in a row. Hypnosis skeptics may find their confidence shaken, as Joe takes the willing on a G-rated adventure they won’t even remember.


Families are also encouraged to take part in the Abra Cadabra Open Art Space, led by arts educator Krista Eddy and a slew of LCCC volunteers. The workshop will take over Margaret’s Meeting Room, down the hall from the auditorium at the Lincoln City Cultural Center, and will be open for drop-in fun from 1 to 4 pm daily, March 26-March 30. Some projects will be guided (like magical wands, magician’s hats and floating butterflies) and other tables will be “free art” zones, with paper, markers, paints, fabric, notions, and the like. Children 8 and under must be accompanied by an adult, but all others can attend on their own. Entrance fee is just $5. For details, contact Krista Eddy at 541-994-9994.

Justin Werner
Justin Werner
Justin Werner is the founder and editor of the Lincoln City Homepage, a trusted source of local news and information for residents and visitors of Lincoln City, Oregon. He is also a community leader, entrepreneur, and dedicated advocate for transparency and accountability in local government.


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