The weather outside the Duke Energy Center in Cincinnati was partly cloudy, which pretty much matched the atmosphere inside at the Central States Numismatic Society Convention April 29-May 2.
“It could have been better,” acknowledged David Heinrich, president of host club Cincinnati Numismatic Association and a CSNS governor. “Attendance was down a little.”
“Attendees had some challenges, especially Friday and Saturday, because of the Flying Pig Marathon, and obviously the economy played a part, too.”
The marathon registration was held at the same convention center, and some CSNS attendees reported it took them a half hour to find a parking space.
But Robert Sebenick of Meridian Coins, Okemos, Mich., said his sales were pretty steady.
“It’s been really good,” Sebenick said.
Most popular were coins priced under $500, he said.
“Collectors have money, but they are being cautious and trying to get a good value,” he said.
Good sellers were Indian Head cents, Barber dimes and type coins, he said.
“If you spend $300 to $400 on a coin you can get a very, very nice coin as a good investment,” Sebenick said.
But be sure it’s a coin with nice eye appeal and no problems, he warned.
Paper money dealer Tom Denly of Denly’s of Boston said he’s been telling people that for 35 years.
“People are being very, very conscious of quality,” Denly said. “ No one wants to buy a note where you have to say, “But ...”
The poor attendance at the show was “kind of tragic,” Denly said.
“It’s as if someone threw a party and no one came,” he said.
Denly blames the location.
“Ohio has never been a good paper money state even when the market was great,” he said.
He has higher hopes for the next CSNS show in Milwaukee, and is in favor of naming Chicago as the permanent CSNS venue going forward.
Auction results are in a separate story. Exhibit winners are listed on Page 36. Photos appear on Page 24.