This weekend, I decided to visit my first card show in 20+ years. It was held in Plano, Texas (I heard about it through Sports Collector Daily - it was put on by editor Rich Klein). I was not impressed.
To be fair, this was the first attempt at hosting a show for Klein, and the money raised through table and raffle ticket sales was to be used by his temple's men's club. So, with all of that in mind, he gets a pass.
The show was advertised as running from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and was to feature 20 tables. The location is about two hours from my house, so I stayed with a cousin the night before because he lives 30 minutes away. I showed up at 9 a.m., paid my !4 admission fee and donated another $9 and walked in.
I was immediately disappointed. Close to half of the vendors were either not there or still in the process of setting up. As a person that it highly frustrated by tardiness, I was immediately bothered. My primary goal was to submit some of my cards to Beckett for grading (I'm finally moving toward my goal of getting my PC's graded), but the Beckett guys were still setting up.
So I decided to take an initial walk around the floor to see who had what and then formulate a plan of attack. For the tables that were set up, few had anything I was interested in. Some tables had nice cards; unfortunately, the prices were astronomical. Other tables had mostly football cards, which I don't collect. One table was solely vintage sports magazines. That's pretty cool, but not something I am interested in. I continued to scan all of the tables, but stopped when I noticed the Beckett table was up and running.
I went and chatted with the guys from Beckett, then filled out my paperwork to have my cards graded. Five cards and $60 later, my cards were packaged to be graded. I should get them back in four weeks. Hooray!
When I was finished there, I was tempted to just leave. However, I did spot a table that had a "$3 Hit" box, so I went back and scoped it out. After finding a couple cards that I could send in trades, I found a few cards for myself. I asked the vendor if he would take $10 for the five cards, to which he replied he would be more than happy to keep them if I didn't want to pay full price. I gave him $15 and walked out.
In all, I saw only one vendor who had anything remotely close to a dime box, and it was a 50-cent box. I briefly looked through it, but it seemed to mostly be football. I only recall one table that had any autographed balls or memorabilia for sale, and not a single table offered boxes for sale. There were no tables that had supplies for sale, either.
In all, I didn't have a great experience. I don't know that I'll go to any more shows again any time soon. I seem to have better luck trading with y'all.