Wow! What an exhilarating ride. Two years ago, two local coin clubs were approached by the ANA to host the 2008 National Money Show in Phoenix, Ariz. The last time the show was in Phoenix was 1951. Here in the desert we expect droughts, but 57 years? The Phoenix and Mesa coin clubs jumped at the chance to host the show, and during the long process the Fountain Hills and Arizona Territorial coin clubs also joined the effort as honorary hosts.
Hosting the event has been extremely beneficial to all of our clubs. Through the generous sponsorship of the ?Join a Local Club for Free? program sponsored by Krause Publications and Butternut Coins, 180 new members were added to the collective rosters of the four area clubs.
Because of the enormity of task the four clubs and the 80 volunteers they provided were given the opportunity to work together on something all were passionate about. This not only led to greater friendship between clubs, but became a shining example of what ?Numismatic Fellowship? really means.
The great success of the show can be attributed to the one and only Brenda Bishop. Her title with the ANA is convention manager, but experience has shown she is much, much more. She is more like a grand maestro conducting an intricate and beautiful piece of music. She showed the clubs how each and every piece is important to the whole and makes each section want to perform to their best ability. When Brenda and her core of National ANA volunteers arrived just before the show, you start to get a bit on edge as the complexity of the event and importance of planning and timing became apparent. Yet somehow she brought all these different people and activities together perfectly and to the outside observer the whole thing ran as smooth as a quiet brook on a sunny, peaceful day.
Our Phoenix 2008 ANA National Money Show TM medal set was a big undertaking for the two modest local coin club hosts and we were quite concerned about keeping the costs on them reasonable. We found the local Arizona Territorial Mint, which did a fantastic job of turning rough sketches into beautiful works in high relief metallic art. The 200 three-medal sets (silver, Arizona copper and bronze) sold out with the help of the numismatic press, the ads through the ANA and some of the early arrivals at the show. Our 300 single Arizona copper medals, only available at the show, were all gone by the middle of the show. We had hoped for this outcome, but did not expect it. Wow! What a show!
I am so proud of each and every volunteer that made the Phoenix 2008 National Money Show a success. The more eager hands, the lighter the load is so true. Meeting attendance doubled the whole year before the show from members eager to participate. We had very good local support guided by local host club members who stepped up and chaired each activity with great care.
A grateful coin club community in the Phoenix ?Valley of the Sun? would like to thank the 5,800 local, national and international attendees for making this a wonderful show. The local coin clubs enjoyed hosting the show and we hope the ANA will not take another 57 years to return the show to the Phoenix area. With the success of this show, the fantastic weather and the new convention center, this should not be a problem. This has been the greatest way to build numismatic fellowship I have ever seen, so thank you all!
If your club is given the opportunity to host the ANA National Money Show go ahead, you will be thankful you did.
James Mann was general chairman of the ANA National Money Show in Phoenix March 7-9.
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