Klein’s Korner: Preparing For A Big Card Show In Texas – If you are involved in the hobby in the DFW area, you are probably aware there is a major card show in Frisco the April 26-28 weekend. The show has approximately 200 tables (just about sold out) and features many dealers and corporate presences whom we normally don’t see in this area. The 200 tables makes this the biggest event since Wanda Marcus ran the “Southwest National” about 25 years ago.
Now, when one has an event not seen for 25 years we look for similarities and differences. One major similarity is just as it was 25 years ago there were more dealers than even the National could handle. The National currently has an issue in getting a table as first-time vendor is extremely limited. The waiting list is long and the odds of bucking the list are slim to none and slim has already taken the last train to Clarksville.
So, with the paucity of new people able to set up at the National, and for the National promoters that’s a good problem to have. Many dealers who want to set up at a big show need newer options. Heck, the National was able to issue a dealer table listing this week. In many ways, this is similar to the hobby in the Spring of 1994 before the Baseball Players Strike, Hockey Lockout, Internet Growth (read eBay) and so many other modes of competition. With people such as Gary V going on a National Sports Talk show and expounding on why sports cards can be a great investment and/or lots of fun, to the 20-25 year rule of people who collected as a youth returning as adults now they have disposable income.
I want to give a little hint (and save you all some money here). If you go to link page and wish to take 3 tables for the fall show, please pre-pay. The cost should be $185 but I will ensure we honor for anyone who wants a table for the Labor Day show and pays up front. Always a big fan of $20 savings for our dealers.
Well, the reason is the cost involved in walking in the door. I do realize there are significant costs involved with running this specific show but if one feels they have to charge $10 per day to get in the door I hope they have plenty of goodies for people who are walking in the door. I know there will be some sticker shock for those collectors who are used to paying $1 to enter the local DFW shows and the major multiple can be a turn off. Although the promoters have a right to charge whatever they want to get in the door, that cost is almost as much as getting into the National. The last time I checked the parking is $5 for the day and $12 to get in the door. Now, there is no parking charge so the cost is $10 versus $17 and that is in my opinion too close because there are about 1000 less tables than at a National and a reduced corporate presence. My opinion for what it’s worth (or not worth) is to charge $5 per day and $10 for the weekend. That way if someone comes on Friday, they can return on Saturday or Sunday and that’s already paid for. If you notice the promotional flyer posted above there is no mention of the admission fee. To me, that is an indication of something that they realize may be a turn-off to collectors.
I also hope there are concessions available for everyone at the show. One of my friends, and I literally just spoke to him while prepping the photos is a type 2 diabetic and actually had low blood sugar at my last show. Thankfully I had some peanut butter crackers and an 8 oz. coke for him since he needed it more than I did.
That’s a long day and I presume these things will be available but if not, one should alert the dealers so they don’t have to send people out for food or drink. I’m also not sure as to how easy or difficult the load-in/load-out will be so there may be many surprised dealers on the day of the show. I sure hope the load-in can be a drive in to one’s table and that will make it pretty easy for all concerned.
These are all issues which will be dealt with, and hopefully have already been thought of as well as coordinating all the autograph guests will be a challenge for the promoters and one hopes they are equal to the task. I’ll return with a review of the event in about 10 days-2 weeks and I hope the show is a home run.
For more from Rich Klein, follow him on Twitter @sabrgeek.
Klein’s Korner: Preparing For A Big Card Show In Texas
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