The original promoters have scattered, but collectors and dealers in Webster, New York still have a show to call their own–more than 20 years after it first opened.
You hesitate to talk about it because it makes you sound, well, old.
Huge crowds, lining up to get in. Dealers actually making money. Promoters making enough to buy more cards, not grow wealthy.
But there’s no denying it. Sports collecting as a mainstream hobby was young and strong in the early 1980s. Guys who had their collections hidden in closets suddenly had a place to go once a month. Shows like the one in Webster, New York sprouted up as ‘clubs’, bringing enthusiastic buyers and sellers together on a regular basis.
“We would have waiting lists of 15 to 20 dealers (wanting to rent tables), and people would line up outside the door to get in,” said the former promoter.
Many of those smaller city shows have dried up or turned into once a year events, but they’re still coming to the Knights of Columbus building.
The local newspaper has a look back at the show–and a barometer of the current state of the hobby, which according to local dealers is getting the focus back on collectors.