Our second charity fundraising show in the Dallas suburbs is history and after a couple of days of reflection, I realized that Plano II, white not quite as a major success as Plano I, was a truly good show in its own right. We understood going in that Labor Day weekend, although not the official end of summer in Texas that it is in the northern part of our country, may keep some people away. However, it is a one day show in the middle of the three-day weekend and for attendees and dealers alike, it seems like an opportunity to enjoy the hobby without feeling rushed.
First the bad news: we did have several dealers not show up without letting us know. I even had to yell at a prospective vendor, who is co-promoting a show himself in the DFW area, about how he would feel if I did that at his show. While his friend was aghast, at least the seller understood where I was coming from and did make a donation for his table.
Now the good news. I was shocked when I realized about 175 people came through the doors and we raised almost as much money as with our first effort last spring. And yes, we will have two shows again next year. They will be the first Sunday of spring break (March 8) and once again, the Sunday of Labor Day weekend.
We drew folks of all ages but a lot of traditional collectors who came with want lists they were hoping to fill. I even saw a person carrying the Sport Americana Team Checklist book edited by Jeff Fritsch way back in 1995. If I recall correctly, that was the final book produced using the Sport Americana name before Beckett bought out that name and it was never used again. Unknown to us there was a major youth hockey tourney in the DFW area and several of them found us. It was great to see some youngsters connecting with the hobby through our show.
I met some folks who enjoy the column and enjoyed seeing a couple who said they follow Sports Collectors Daily via the daily RSS feeds.
The flow of the crowd was pretty steady all day but did start off a tad slow and I’d say about 70 percent of the people who came did arrive between 11 and 3.
We had terrific corporate support including Tri-Star led by Jeff Rosenberg, Topps (Clay Luraschi), Panini (Scott Prusha), Just Collect (Leighton Sheldon) and PSA (Joe Orlando). We gave away some really neat door prize items and it was fun to hand out gifts to everyone who won. I had been advised by several dealers to run a silent auction but after seeing what did and did not receive bids, some of them were items at very low minimum bids, a better option is to have the brotherhood take one to two tables and just sell these items with all monies going to their good works. I think that is what we do going forward.
And the show would never have been possible without the help of our men’s club. We had the room set up the night before, with thanks again to Jeff Schwartz to help with the setup since we had so much extra material to give away. In addition, we had great help at the entrance table as well as with the silent auction and the refreshments.
I am going to check and see if any of the dealers would support slightly shorter show hours Sunday and adding a few hours on Labor Day Monday. I heard after the fact that several dealers wanted that option.
Some sellers had good days while others had off days. My day was acceptable but I did wholesale some cards to get there. I did find interesting that half my dollar volume came from pre-1980 football cards, marking about the third straight show vintage football has done well for me. Other vendors reporting selling vintage cards going as far back as pre-war and it did appear many collectors walking in were asking for those pre-1941 cards.
It was also pointed out to me that this show was truly an old-school show as one of the vendors told me after the fact that many people who bought from him were very familiar with online venues but all had stories about how it took 3-4 weeks for cards to be delivered to them.
Another local promoter, Jeff Johnson, has asked me to coordinate Dallas area local shows for him and we will be promoting shows at the Southfork hotel on Central Expressway (75) Just North of 635 (LBJ). Our shows are scheduled for October 18, November 15 and December 13 and yes there are tables still available.