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Viewpoint: Show success depends on location

By: Patrick J. Curran

In a recent “Class of ‘63” column, it was suggested that with modern technology, etc., a coin show could be more successful as a one day event. I think that is an oversimplification. I think the answer to that question depends upon location.

I am sure that in some areas, like central Texas along the I-35 corridor, where there are many coin clubs and shows every month or two, a one day show would be profitable.

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Now in the same state, let’s take El Paso. The nearest city to us that has a show (twice a year) is Albuquerque, N.M., about 275 miles away. The next nearest city, a few miles further away is Tucson, Ariz. While there are several coin shops in El Paso, there are none en route to the above cited cities and one has to travel east in Texas to Midland-Odessa, another few hundred miles away, to find another coin shop.

The International Coin Club of El Paso, runs a three-day show once a year, on the same weekend and in the same location every year. This year, that weekend falls Feb. 17, 18 and 19.

The show opens at noon on Friday and closes on Sunday at 3 p.m. Of the 60 dealers who regularly attend, most do stay until the end on Sunday. El Paso is unique in that many families come to the show right after church on Sunday.

Also, as a border community, many Mexicans come over that day to buy silver and gold as well as trade coins. It is literally true that at 3 p.m., we are chasing people out.

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We do not charge an admission fee or for parking. We encourage the public to visit our exhibit section and vote. There are competitive as well as educational exhibits on all aspects of the hobby. Some of them have gone on to win major places at the Texas Numismatic Association and American Numismatic Association. We offset costs by having a raffle for coins donated by the dealers in the area as well as by members. The show is profitable every year for both the club and the dealers.

With the lack of coin stores in most of this vast geographic area, this is a great buying opportunity for the regularly attending dealers as well as the collecting community.

So if you would like to see a very successful three-day show, I invite you to come to the Shrine Auditorium in El Paso, Texas, Feb. 17-19 and see the “Best Little Show in the Southwest.”

This Viewpoint was written by Patrick J. Curran, a hobbyist and TNA governor. Viewpoint is a forum for the expression of opinion on a variety of numismatic subjects. The opinions expressed here are not necessarily those of Numismatic News.
To have your opinion considered for Viewpoint, write to David C. Harper, Editor, Numismatic News, 700 E. State St., Iola, WI 54990. Send email to david.harper@fwmedia.com

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