Sure has been soggy here in northern Illinois for the past month. If you recall my Orland blog from September, I drove to the show in a torrential downpour and had to deal with a jack-knifed semi-truck on the highway; delaying my arrival.
With that long commute freshly on my mind, I woke up a little earlier this morning and was on the road to Orland at 7 a.m. The sky was still cloudy but the sun was peaking through. However, the closer I came to Orland, the tighter the clouds appeared and I had to deal with some rain. Thankfully, no jack-knifed semi.
I arrived at the Civic Center at 7:40 a.m. — probably my earliest arrival to this show in 2023. Load in was smooth and easy. I was set up by 8:15 a.m. I could see a line forming at the door to get in but I had a good 45 minutes to kill before the gates opened. I started to fall asleep behind my tables. I think I even snored a little bit. Probably drooled some.
When I snapped out of it, I figured I better walk around to keep awake. I realized that I practically never walk this show because I am always busy helping customers. I cannot even remember the last time I walked the show.
Right away Record Store Steve started giving me a hard time for buying Rick’s display cases last month. Sorry, my friend, Rick offered me the cases, I accepted the offer, paid the man and received the cases that I actually need because many of my other cases are falling apart.
Needless to say, I did not look at Steve’s table but got a nice view of all of the others. I was surprised at the large number of vintage dealers. There were five or six guys there that I don’t know and do not recall ever seeing before who had some really nice vintage. I observed that Terry and I were the only ones with vintage commons.
Back at my tables, I sat back, tried not to fall asleep again, and worried a bit about whether I would have any sales today with all that great vintage in the room — which was really nonsensical on my part. I rarely have a bad show in Orland. I had a decent show today, not overpowering but definitely not bad.
Really light crowd early on and I dinked out a few sales around 9 a.m. First two guys at my tables today wanted 1975 Topps baseball commons. Unfortunately, my ‘75 Topps binder is about empty. I gotta say that my binders from the 1970’s have been roughed up this year. Seems like everybody and their mother are building sets from the ‘70’s. I can’t keep up!
Actually, my binders from every year are being hit hard. I just finished reloading my 1965 Topps baseball binder and piles of cards were sold from that binder today. Man, oh man! I can’t keep up!
My next project is 1978-79 Topps hockey. I should be able to fill that one up pretty quickly. Then I am going to work on 1954 Topps baseball. My pal Will pulled some ‘54’s today along with some 1976 Topps baseball. Thanks Will!
A few guys pulled cards from my 1964 Topps baseball binder. My guy working on 1961 Topps baseball found some cards. World traveler Chris T. pulled some cards. We did a cash and trade deal where I received a nice group of 1970’s Kellogg’s baseball cards. Thanks Chris! Another regular purchased my 1971 Topps Poster Dick Butkus. So sad that the legendary Dick Butkus is no longer with us. I wrote to him as a kid in the late 1970’s. He signed my card and also sent me a signed photo which I still have. The 1970’s was a glorious time to collect autographs, before it became big business. I wrote to hundreds of athletes back then and many included a signed photo in addition to signing my card.
Back at my tables today, Rick pulled some cards. Thanks Rick! I have a husband and wife team slowly building the 1977 Topps set. They pulled a nice stack today. The lovely Minanette pulled a huge pile out of the ‘65 binder. My one guy who always buys some hockey found some more today. Gil bought some cards. Thanks Gil! I finally remembered to bring my 1961 Baltimore Orioles year book for my Oriole collector.
Lots of new guys today pulling cards. One guy about cleaned out my 1960 Leaf. I also sold a bunch of 1961 Golden Press. After that slow start, things really picked up and I was busy all day. I had customers at my tables up until the show closed at 2 p.m. — which is generally a good thing. However, there is a new guy working the Civic Center and he shut off the lights in the room at 2:05 p.m. I could not see to pack up. I got into it with him a little bit. I foresee this being a big problem down the road. This knucklehead has to realize that the show is advertised and open until 2 p.m. I can’t magically have 50,000 cards packed up and out of the building by 2:05 p.m. when I am selling cards up until the closing bell of 2 p.m.! Gimme a break!
Knucklehead aside, I had a really nice day. My main man Paul P. was there. So was Milan, Chris and many of the Orland regulars. Dennis stopped by. Jim C. was there. We all wish he would set up again! I talked some guitar with Phil. Then I saw Dave who I met years ago at the Fred Copp shows and have not seen in the longest time. I was recently wondering about him. He played minor league baseball in the 1960’s and always has some great stories to share from his experiences playing for Eddie Stanky.
On the buying front, I went into the show with the mindset that I was not going to buy any cards because I currently have a few card debts that I need to pay off. I expected one of my creditors to show up today. I brought cash for him but he never arrived. I’m guessing he was set up at the three-day Nashville show this weekend.
I am glad he did not show because I had a real nice deal come my way and I was thankful I had the cash in my pocket. A guy who I have been selling cards to for years brought me a box of some non-sports along with some Exhibits, including a Jackie Robinson. We were able to work out a cash and trade deal.
I had to skip the sub shop after the show this time around because I had to pick up my daughter from work. Hopefully, next month I can hang after the show with my pals Will and Joe. Lunch is on me guys!
Before the show ended, I had a chance to talk to Karen, who runs the show with Rich. I learned that Karen has a journalism degree and a masters degree in media. She has also written a number of children’s books. How cool is that!
A big thank you to Karen and Rich for another great show! I just love the Orland show, despite that knucklehead who shut off the lights on me while I was trying to pack up! I wonder what ever happened to the other guy who managed the building for years. He sure was nice. Wish he would come back!
Anyway, I will be back in Orland for the next show slated for the Saturday after Thanksgiving. I hope to have a few more binders reloaded!!
I am taking next weekend off to hang out with my son who has a semester break and wants to come home. Poor guy is a little homesick. So the wife and I are going to bring him home for a few days.
There are a bunch of good shows next weekend that I recommend attending. Saturday is the show at Woodstock North High School in Woodstock, Illinois, along with the Oconomowoc show located just northwest of Milwaukee. Then there are two Wisconsin shows on Sunday including the Roma Lodge show in Racine and the Holiday Inn show in Janesville. I hate to miss these shows but I am looking forward to spending some time with the boy.
I will be back at it on Saturday, October 28, 2023, for the Madison show at the Sheridan on John Nolan Drive. I have been meaning to get back to Madison for the longest time but just have not been able to do it. This will be my first Madison show of the year and am looking forward to it!
The next Oak Creek show is on November 4. I am already fielding calls from dealers that want to set up. If everybody comes back from last month, I might have to put some dealers in the rafters! This next Oak Creek show is going to be a monster show! Mark your calendars!!
I appreciate all the kind comments I received today about the blog. It is really fun for me to do and I appreciate everybody for following along. I hope to see you at a card show soon!
Pictured below is a spooky van I saw in the Civic Center parking lot. Scary! Happy Halloween!!