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At our best at the FUN convention

Everybody knows that Young Numismatists hold the future of coin collecting in their hands.

It was even more true at the Florida United Numismatists convention this past weekend.

After the terrible shootings at the Fort Lauderdale airport on Friday, Young Numismatists and their parents were undeterred in coming down to the convention center in that city to participate in the activities led by Tony Bonaro.

He reported his results Sunday morning at the FUN general meeting.

On Saturday morning, there were 47 YNs taking part in a program.

That afternoon 104 Boy Scouts arrived for the merit badge clinic.

I had walked to the ballroom with a father and son duo who were looking forward to the experience on Saturday.

I stood in the back for a few minutes to watch the Boy Scout presentation. Tony is clearly the right person for inspiring the next generation. It was an encouraging sight to see.

The Scouts and the program for them represent the best of America.

On the bourse floor there was a kids booth during the show.

Attendance there was at its highest Saturday, which is no surprise given family schedules.

Whereas Thursday had 32 kids and Friday recorded 38, the Saturday total was 153.

While activity at the YN level carried on as normal, so too did the rest of the show.

President Randy Campbell said that under the circumstances, FUN performed extremely well.

One of the logistical problems that occurred was due to the closure of the Fort Lauderdale airport.

As a result, some FedEx packages were extremely late.

The message center fielded numerous questions about it calmly and with the professionalism everyone expects from the FUN organization.

It pays to remember that it is all done with volunteers.

The board of 17 members is comprised of volunteers. There is just one paid FUN employee.

On Sunday morning after the election results were revealed, I was given the honor of swearing in board members to new terms.

President Campbell was joined by vice president Bob Hurst, treasurer Carrie Best and secretary Donna Moon.

Also sworn in were six board members, Ed Abbott, Jim Best, Nancy Casey, Jay Chamberlain, Bernie Ososky and Cindy Wibker.

By Sunday morning attendance was reported approaching 8,000.

There were 1,650 dealers registered, with 768 of them having gotten new photo IDs.

They occupied almost 600 booths. Such numbers make the FUN show a must-attend event.

None of us can escape the grim realities of the world we live in.

What we can do is say thank you to FUN for making our reality as a numismatic community so much better.

I know that I am deeply grateful for what FUN does.

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

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