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FUN show derives strength from routine

There is something comfortable about routines. They surround our daily lives with a familiar framework on which to build.

When I wake up, I know it is time to get that first cup of coffee.

If it is Monday, I know that I will have lunch with the usual group of people at the Crystal Cafe.

If it is Thursday, Numismatic News pages had better be out the electronic door to our printer by 1 p.m.

I don’t have to think about things like this. I just do them. It frees my mind up to focus on important things.

Routines don’t have to be daily or weekly. They can also be annual. With the change of year to 2010, the Florida United Numismatists convention comes into focus.

I plan to head down to Orlando Jan. 6 to join in the year-opening event.

The FUN show is a favorite destination for many numismatists whether or not they are professionals. They don’t have think about it. They just go. There is no wrestling with the decision to go or not go, it is simply a matter of performing the tasks that are required to make sure we all get there.

These regulars at the convention know that it is the place to be to begin the numismatic year whether you want to do serious business, or just combine coins with a nice escape from a northern winter.
The FUN organization and its many volunteers make it as easy as possible to experience one of the largest coin shows on the annual calendar.

But once you have gotten there through a routine, the FUN show and its many participants go where they will. Sometimes the market is hot and that becomes the commercial trend. Sometimes to market is cold and that result is immediately flashed around the nation and everybody behaves accordingly until whatever trend the FUN show sets is broken by a subsequent event.

Nowadays the FUN convention is held in Orlando with rare exceptions. Just about everybody knows the location and how to get in and out. They know the hotels and the best places to eat. In a way, it becomes everybody’s hometown for a few days. People have really come to appreciate that aspect of FUN and other shows. Baltimore, Long Beach, or the annual Memphis paper money show have built on a similar hometown sense of ease and comfort. For example, I can’t imagine going to Memphis without stopping at the Rendezvous for ribs, or picking my hotel at FUN according to proximity to restaurants.

The American Numismatic Association board of governors will be wrestling with the issue of what to do with its future conventions at its meeting at FUN.

Will the board choose to take a page out of this hometown playbook and anchor ANA events in a small group of cities that are or will become familiar to most every convention regular?

We will see. Certainly, familiarity and routine alone are not enough for a show to succeed, but because most hobbyists seem to appreciate these factors, once a strong location is identified, familiarity and routine can make it unbeatable.

More Resources:

2010 U.S. Coin Digest, The Complete Guide to Current Market Values, 8th ed.

State Quarters Deluxe Folder By Warmans

Standard Guide to Small-Size U.S. Paper Money, 1928 to Date

Strike It Rich with Pocket Change, 2nd Edition

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