The Royal Magician of Oz Trilogy is a 3 volume tale of magic and wonder that recalls the cherished values of friendship, loyalty and courage. This timeless tale of Oz reminds us of the value of overcoming our deepest fears and conquering the challenges that might otherwise defeat us.

Volume One; Magician of Oz, Volume Two; Shadow Demon of Oz and Volume Three; Family of Oz are now available for your reading enjoyment, as well as The Ozian Adventure of Pickleless & Blu.

The Emerald Slippers of Oz
, featuring an Introduction by Roger S. Baum; great grandson of L. Frank Baum, as well as the recently completed Tails of Oz are also
available for your reading enjoyment.

All are available in both paperback and Kindle.

Friday, June 24, 2016

The 39th Oz-Stravaganza 2016 and the Nomes of Oz

It's been a few weeks since Amanda and I attended this biggest Wizard of Oz Festival of the year and time now permits me to get at it.

We chose to leave the Land of the Hoosiers a few days early in order to have a pleasant journey. So naturally, we hit a few wineries along the way.



Turns out Pennsylvania is second only to California with the most acreage devoted to vinyards. Who knew?
Once we hit New York State, the nickle and diming of the Toll Roads began. 


The one odd feature of the Toll Roads are the Rest Stops, one of which features an elevated walkway that crosses the highway.


Of course, once we made it to the Craftsmann Inn in Fayetteville, which is near Chittenango, site of the 39th Annual Oz-Stravaganza, of which we were Guest Authors in the Authors & Artists Alley. Once we settled in, we made our way to the festival grounds and it became obvious we were no longer in Kansas.




After stopping by the local library and the All Things Oz Museum to donate a copy of our latest book, Nomes of Oz,


we then made our way to Chittenango Falls, which always gives us inspiration for our next book.


As usual, we found inspiration in the oddest of places.



The next day was Saturday and the best of the three days of the festival. We found the usual Poppy Field and set up nearby in the Authors & Artists Alley tent.




The day was spent interacting with numerous kids, parents and all manner of fans of the Wizard of Oz. Alongside us were the usual crew of suspects (Authors and/or Artists).

Vincent Myrand (Artist)



Ron Baxley, Jr. (Author)


Gwen Tennille (Artist and Author)


Tom Hutchison (Artist and Author)


Richard Mickelson


Kenneth L. Doane II


The highlight of Saturday was the parade, which Amanda participated in for the first time. I'm so proud of how well she did.


 


 Overall, it was a great day and sales were good. Unfortunately, Sunday was a wash-out with rain all day, which required relocating the farewell ceremonies to the church basement.




John Fricke, two-time Emmy Award-winning producer/writer; a Grammy Award nominee, was the host and did so admirably. He is such a special guy and Amanda and I are proud to count him among our friends. I know of no one who loves Oz more than him. I wish the Grand Marshall of the Parade and Special Guest, Bronson Pinchot could have made, but alas... not to be. 


Overall, it was a fantastic festival, despite the rain-out, which usually happens about every other year or so. Special kudos and congratulations go out to Marc Baum, Colleen Hummell Zimmer, Lynne Bunce, Mark Sample, and so many others who go far above the call of duty to ensure a successful festival. I know I've missed someone, but I hope they understand. It was a fun time and we hope to return next year.

Totus vos postulo est Amor!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

The 100th Indy 500 ; What a Race!!!

Just over a few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending the 100th Indy 500, a classic American race that I have been attending since 1988.

This year, as usual, I was joined by my friend Brion, and this year, he brought his fiance, Shannon Feinstein.






This year, we met up as usual at the Plainsfield Steak&Shake, though a bit earlier than usual due to the fact that this year's race was sold out. Despite the warnings of massive crowds early on, our usual, very secret, back door way into the north end of the complex worked like a charm. Even once we made our way to the north gates, the crowds weren't that bad, though we would discover later that they got worse fairly soon after we got in.





Once we got in, we made our way to the back nine for some quiet time before the madness began.




We then did some walking and got a fine look at the Pagoda across the infield.



We then made our way to the Fan Zone for some pre-race fun.


As usual, there are photo ops around various autos from the past and present.


 We also ran into a rather large bear and I felt compelled to perform a prostate exam, for his health of course.


Soon, we made our way to our seats, which were about halfway up on the outside of Turn 2. Best seats ever!!!


There were the usual pre-race rituals, including the Balloon Launch and the biggest flag I've seen in some time.



 And then it was Racetime!



As usual, the start was amazing and after about 50 laps or so, we did our usual ritual of walking about to see the cars up close.
Fortunately for us, we watched Juan-Pablo Montoya crash out on the backstretch, which seemed to amaze Shannon.






And of course, we love to stand beneath the track for a restart.





Finally, we made our way back to our seats for the last 75 laps or so and were not disappointed as the racing was awesome!





Overall, it was an awesome day and one for the records. I have never seen so many people in one place... ever.

Looks like I had a great time. Thanks Brion for 16 years of the Indy 500, and for bring your fine lady to enjoy what we have enjoyed for so long.


God bless America!!!