CLEARWATER - On Sunday, December 3rd members of the Tampa Bay Magic Club will perform a Christmas Magic Show Benefit at the Coconuts Comedy Club, 2950 Gulf to Bay Blvd, Clearwater with proceeds going in part to the AMBUCS charitable group. Tickets for the 90 minute show are $10 for adults and children 12 and under $5. The doors open at 5 pm. Full menu dinners and drinks are available, but not included in the ticket price. A Magic Mini Mall will be in the lobby before and after the show.
The line-up of magicians should prove entertaining. Magicians Mark Byrne; Robert Smith, Bob Klase, Howard Read, and Jim Greiner will be performing.
A portion of the proceeds will be going to AMBUCS in memory of former Tri-City AMBUCS member and fellow magician, Bill Dahlquist. AMBUCS, formerly known as the American Business Clubs, has a local chapter, Tri-City AMBUCS for Clearwater, Tampa, and St. Petersburg members, which is part of the larger, national network of charities dedicated to helping the disabled.
Members of the local chapter in Clearwater are active and retired professional businessmen and women, some of whom are also magicians. Member Jim Greiner will be performing in the magic show. The group meets every Wednesday for lunch at Cove Cay Country Club in Clearwater working on projects to help create mobility, independence and giggles and grins for people with disabilities.
The Clearwater chapter participates in AMBUCS' national programs and even originated one of their own, "Before the Fall" which provides specially designed tub and shower "Grab Bars" for bathroom safety and fall prevention for the elderly. The program was so successful it was adopted nationwide.
The chapter participates in the AmTryke therapeutic tricycle project, which provides specially equipped bikes for children with disabilities such as spina bifida, cerebral palsy, and poor motor control. Blind children have even received AmTrykes. Therapists find the Trykes improve the children's motor coordination and self esteem.
AmTrykes have rotating handlebars, which are attached to the same change chain drive as the foot pedals, so the child's arms work in conjunction with the legs when pedaling the bike. Velcro strapping and safety belts keep the rider safe. A wide wheelbase and narrow turning radius insure stability.
Locally, the Tri-City Chapter has demonstration sites at two elementary schools where disabled students can use the AmTrykes and area therapists can bring their patients to try them out.
Another noteworthy AMBUCS program the local chapter supports is Scholarships for Therapists. AMBUCS is the single largest private source of education grants for therapists in the country. One scholarship helps to provide therapy to hundreds of people over the course of a therapist's career. Scholarships are awarded to students studying physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech pathology and audiology.
Funds from the program are two-fold; they help deserving students complete their higher education and also help place therapists who completed their training in jobs within the field. Since 1955, the program has provided scholarship awards nationally to 12,641 students, totaling more than $6.6 million.
To reserve tickets for the show, or get directions phone (727) 797-5653.
For more information or to make a holiday donation to the Tri-City chapter of AMBUCS, call 531-6080 or visit their website: www.TriCityAMBUCS.org
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