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Baltimore Next Up for Me
July 14, 2008

Judging from the attitudes of people attending the Iola Old Car Show, life goes on despite high gasoline prices and other distractions.

People who visited seemed relaxed and had a good time. Those of us cooking hamburgers on Sunday morning marveled at the quantity of food that was being packed away. We haven't done so many burgers in years. Yet the crowds were no bigger. Those of us on the crew were unanimous in thinking that the crowds, if anything, were smaller than they were in the last couple of years.

So what is going on? How can fewer people consume more food?

The first thing to remember is my personal impressions of a show that is widely spread out may have little to do with overall results.

But the other thing to remember is that there probably were a few people who were scared away by $4 gas. Those who attended the show swallowed the price hike and made it to Iola anyway. That means by the time I saw them, they had already made a greater commitment to the show than they have for prior years.

When they got hungry, they ate.

So those who made it here were determined to have a enjoyable show. I hope we gave it to them. I talked to many people who were veteran show-goers. I talked to one fellow who said he attended every other year. At the end of our conversation, I said I would see him again in 2010.

In two weeks, the World's Fair of Money will get under way in Baltimore. Like the car show, the American Numismatic Association convention is an annual tradition for many collectors. I assume a few potential convention-goers won't make it, but those who do come will behave like the car show attendees. They are the veterans and they will continue to enjoy the hobby that has given them so much.

Baltimore is a great location for a coin convention and those of us who get there will have a good time. See you there.

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About the Author
David C. Harper has been a coin collector since 1963. He joined the Krause Publications editorial staff in 1978 and is currently editor of Numismatic News and World Coin News. He also edits two books annually, North American Coins & Prices and Coin Digest. He is the author of the Class of '63 column that runs each week in Numismatic News. His first bylined numismatic article appeared in the June 1971 issue of Coins Magazine and his various Krause Publications assignments included a stint as editor of the magazine 1980-1983. Harper received a bachelor of science degree from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh in 1977. He had a double major of journalism and economics.

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