I was in the hospital the weekend before the December Oak Creek show, as a result, I had a real tough time putting the show together. I think I only had 165 or 170 tables because I did not have the time or the energy to contact dealers on the wait list. So I was determined to fill all 180 spots for the January show, but I did not expect it to be so much work!
I probably contacted 40 or 50 additional dealers from the wait list. Only half or so bothered to reply. Then there were those with a million questions and I spent way too much time going back and forth. In the end, I added 20 or so new dealers for the December show.
One doosh bag cancelled the night before the show because I could not guarantee the spot he had back in the fall -- not a legit reason to cancel in my book. A couple other guys no-showed which just amazes me when people confirm during the week of the show then do not call, do not text, and do not show up. Needless to say, these guys and the doosh are not setting up again because I have the luxury of a large wait list and can just work the list in the hopes of finding dealers who will show up.
It was hectic preparing for this show. In the week prior, I had a steady stream of folks dropping out and coming in. Luckily, a few guys cancelled that morning because I had way overbooked and I did not have space to set up my own stuff. It was a tight squeeze with 178 tables sold. I could have added a couple more dealers the night before but I just wanted to set up the building and hit the sack.
I was late arriving at the Salvation Army on Friday night. Thankfully, my helpers George and Kristy are the nicest people in the world and did not mind the delay. They also stopped and picked up sandwiches. Thanks guys!
It took me, Lisa, George and Kristy, several hours to set everything up. I ended up giving myself a spot in the back hallway, across from Lake Country Cards. I wonder if there is a better way to set up the Game Room where I can fit more dealers? Anybody have any suggestions? Maybe I should just leave it be.
Also, any dealers that want to set up Friday night, come on out and bring in your tables and cases. I don't know about leaving your cards in the building overnight.
Anyway, I am on soooo many meds these days and am having a difficult time sleeping. Tough night of sleep before the show. Also, there had been a light snow in the wee hours of the morning and the roads were messy. It snowed lightly all day which gave me a worry. A couple of dealers driving in from Northern Wisconsin said the roads were icy up their way. One dealer from up north called to cancel because of the roads -- glad he did because I needed his table!
The lousy weather did not seem to stop anyone else from attending. We ended up with 800 customers through the door and wall to wall dealers. It was a great day!
I brought out binders and sales were steady, though, not as strong as last month. I purchased a small stack of graded cards from Mark's sister Heather. She gave me a nice price. Thanks Heather!
After the show, I always ask a number of dealers how they did. Reports this month were all over the place where some dealers said sales were meh, most said sales were good, while one dealer said it was his best show ever and donated his table to the Salvation Army.
Even though I was tired, I sure did enjoy myself. Thank you everybody! I am amazed every month as we continue to pack 'em into Oak Creek. Afterwards, my phone was ringing off the hook with requests for tables for the February 3 show -- which is how I know a show is a success.
I am currently way overbooked for February 3 with around 190 tables sold. I can't fit everyone in, so I am hoping and praying that 10 or so dealers drop out before show time. If you want to join my growing wait list, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Up next for me as a dealer is a double-bill weekend with Woodstock on Saturday, January 20, 2024, and Orland on Sunday, January 21, 2024.
See you this weekend!
Below are some photos Lisa and I took at the January 6 Oak Creek show.