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Berlin the Place to be Seen
January 26, 2010

The World Money Fair begins later this week in Berlin. There is no other numismatic event like it. It is as much a trade show for world mints as it is a coin show for collectors.

Collectors don’t mind sharing space with mint officials. I have never asked a world mint official if they mind sharing space with collectors.

The fact that the mints go back again and again probably is proof that the officials think it appropriate to rub elbows with their clients.

For Americans attending, the most startling element of the show is the fact that you cannot see across the floor. For American coin shows security is extremely important. Shows are set up so security personnel have a line of sight across the entire floor. No such line of sight exists at the World Money Fair. It looks more like a spring boat show except with coining presses and colorful background displays taking center stage.

This is not to say that there is no security at the World Money Fair. It is simply different.

To make a long story short, the World Money Fair is an important place to be. It has become the venue for giving the Coin of the Year Awards. This will be the third year in which my colleagues and I present the awards there. It should be exiting when it happens on Saturday.

I am in transit. Wednesday should be my first full day in the German capital if all goes according to plan. It is “try to get over jet lag day,” though that shouldn’t stop me from visiting a couple of museums with Standard Catalog staffer Tom Michael.


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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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