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Illinois news brings back memories

In my early years at Numismatic News, one of my annual assignments was to cover the Illinois Numismatic Association convention.

I had a moment or two of personal reminiscing when I received a press release from ILNA announcing that its 220-table bourse is sold out.

A bourse of that size is a significant show. It is more than four times the size of the neighboring Numismatists of Wisconsin show held earlier in the year.

When I was a regular attendee it was held in downstate Illinois, most often in Peoria. It was always the weekend after Labor Day.

Though the location is now up in suburban Chicago at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Tinley Park, the seasonal timing has not changed. The three-day run Sept. 9-11 is the traditional weekend that I was used to.

With a gap in my attendance that has now run to many years, I can see the generational shifts. Chicago is a hot location for coin and paper money shows nowadays. Everybody wants to be there.

Back in the late 1970s, aside from the Chicago International Coin Fair held downtown at the Hyatt, the city was a desert when it came to major shows.

But one thing hasn’t changed. Bullion was booming when I first began attending ILNA shows and it is booming again.

Will I make it down to this year’s ILNA show? Probably not. It is not in the budget.
However, if you are within a reasonable drive to the show, you should plan to attend. Start your own string of memories.

For more information visit the ILNA website at