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Canadian Convention Goes Virtual


It takes a lot to stop a coin collector from continuing to enjoy the hobby. The coronavirus pandemic may have done a lot of damage, but it failed to prevent coin collectors from continuing to pursue what they enjoy. While coin shows have begun to cautiously re-open in the United States, Canada has continued to be more cautious. While this means coin shows in Canada were still shuttered at the time this article was being written, the Royal Canadian Numismatic Association annual convention for 2021 was still planned to convene—going virtual!

According to the RCNA web site, “With the cancellation of our annual convention, due to health concerns associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, the meeting will take place online only.”

The RCNA is Canada’s equivalent to the American Numismatic Association in the United States. According to the RCNA web site, the organization is “a non-profit educational organization formed in 1950 and incorporated by Canada Charter in 1963. It has grown by leaps and bounds from an idea of a few dedicated numismatists to become one of the world’s largest numismatic associations. Although our membership is predominantly located in Canada and the United States of America, we do have members in many other countries around the world. They all have one common interest and that is Canadian numismatics.”

According to RCNA information, “The 2021 RCNA Convention will be held from Friday, July 16 to Saturday, July 25 online, as a series of virtual events using Zoom!”

The organization issues an annual convention medal. The pandemic may have forced the convention to go virtual, but it hasn’t prevented the club from issuing this annual medal.

According to RCNA information, “A theme (was) developed by the RCNA’s medal committee in conjunction with our convention committee. During consultations, the final design was chosen to evoke emotions of national pride and unity in the face of the devastating worldwide COVID-19 pandemic. Canada’s iconic symbol, the Peace Tower, proudly flying the nation’s flag, is prominently featured. The hands of the tower clock indicating 11:11 to honor those Canadians who have made the supreme sacrifice. The eternal Centennial Flame, symbolic of Canadian unity, is in the foreground, representing our country – Strong and Free – A Mari Usque Ad Mare. These two symbols of our national pride are in Ottawa, home to the Ottawa Numismatic Society, the intended host club of the RCNA 2021 Convention before the ongoing pandemic.”

Nothing was said of the convention continuing some form of virtual bourse or convention auction, however many of the collector events were planned to be made available virtually. Among these are meetings of the Waterloo Coin Society, Newfoundland Numismatic Enthusiasts, Canadian Association of Token Collectors, Canadian Banking Memorabilia Society, l’Association des Numismates Francophones du Canada, Canadian Tire Collectors Club, Canadian Errors and Varieties Numismatic Association, Canadian Association of Wooden Money Collectors, Canadian Centennial Collectors Club, and Canadian Paper Money Society.

Four sessions of the RCNA Educational Symposium were also to be available virtually. Subjects to be presented were on ancient coins as art, collecting Canadian $1 bank note vignettes, the sign of the golden fleece, and Nova Scotia exhibition medals.

As might be expected under the circumstances panel discussions open virtually to the public are on ‘How Our Hobby is Changing and a Post COVID-19 Forecast’ and ‘Collector’s Perspective on the State of Hobby and Post COVID-19 Direction.’

The RCNA general meeting, club delegates meeting, and convention wrap up reception were also planned to be held online.