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Get your comfortable shoes ready

Gearing up to attend the American Numismatic Association convention is always a challenge.

Spending a week away from the office, Aug. 4-9, means trying to do as much desk work as possible before being released to run around the bourse floor for nearly six days.

I enjoy the experience and dread it at the same time. It is interesting, but it is exhausting.

Fortunately as I have gotten older I have learned how to pace myself, but even so I expect I will return to Iola, Wis., late Saturday night very tired as I have in past years.

I expect many others will be just as tired at the end of it all. Some will be even more so as they choose to attend the Numismatic Trade Show jointly sponsored by the ANA and the Professional Numismatists Guild.

Those hardy souls will be arriving in Rosemont tomorrow for an official start Aug. 2. If business is good, everyone will take fatigue in their stride. If it isn’t, there will be those who will wonder why we need to spend so much time in Rosemont, Ill., even if the facilities are first-rate and the hotels are comfortable.

Which will it be?

Most likely it will be some combination of the two possibilities.

Do we really need to spend Aug. 1-9 in the Chicago suburb?

Collectively, we don’t seem to want to answer that question.

Individually, most people just vote with their feet. Some might bail out after the trade show ends Aug. 4.

Once the new acquisitions in inventory have been shown to all the major players, it cannot be repeated during the World’s Fair of Money part of the tandem events.

Another cohort of people will arrive as I will to see the opening ribbon cut Aug. 5. More likely, they will be arriving to try to buy a gold Kennedy half dollar from the U.S. Mint.

Who will be left on the bourse floor for the final day?

One incentive to stay will be those gold Kennedy half dollars. The Mint’s final daily tranche of 500 pieces will find eager buyers, I expect. That will enliven the final day.

All in all, the combo show event will be a great and varied experience for all participants. The only difference will be in the details – and how weary we each can become and still function.

I wish success and stamina to everyone.

Buzz blogger Dave Harper is winner of the 2013 Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog and is editor of the weekly newspaper "Numismatic News."