Man, it was strange waking up early Sunday morning for the Orland show. The show has been shuttered for more than a year due to COVID. But there I was, the sun barely out, bins of cards being loaded into the car.
Not much traffic this Sunday morning which was nice. One thing has not changed, road construction on the I294 Tollway. Seems like I drove on the shoulder, a makeshift lane, the whole way down.
I observed that the former Hackney's restaurant in Palos, one of my favorite places, is being reconstructed into a Japanese restaurant -- that made me a little sad. I'm sure the Japanese restaurant will be great but I have been eating at Hackney's my whole life and there are just a couple left when there used to be six or seven of them. I hope the two remaining restaurants stick around!
Anyway, not as many cars as usual in the Civic Center parking lot when I got there around 8 a.m. I was able to nab the coveted green cart so I could bring in my stuff in one trip.
Rich did not recognize me in my mask. I was happy to learn that I had my usual spot. I observed the dealer tables were wayyyy spread out. Set up was easy. Customers were let in at 9 a.m. and they seemed to run into the room. My sales were slow early on. A few $2 and $4 sales. I had cancelled my Pop-up Shop to set up in Orland and began to wonder if I made a mistake.
After an hour of tumbleweeds in front of my tables, things started to happen around 10 a.m. I had brought out all of my binders and was able to put most of them out. I also brought out just one display case and thought it would be cool to fill it with 1933 Goudey commons. Eddie bought all the Goudeys. Show went from bad to good in a matter of minutes.
I was then mobbed for the next couple of hours. I had brought enough cards to replace the Goudeys. I placed 1934-36 Diamond Stars, 1939 Play Ball, 1948 Leaf and 1948 Bowman baseball in the case. Terry bought them all! I have never sold an entire case of cards before let alone two! My, oh my!
Then there is this superstar buyer who started coming to my Pop-up Shop. His girlfriend called last week to see if I was having another Pop-up Shop. I told her I would be in Orland. Well, Superstar came out and spent all day at my tables. Needless to say, my baseball binders from 1957 through 1962 are about empty. My, oh my!
Then I had all sorts of guys buy cards, like Will, Scott, Milan and many others. I have a lot of reloading to do. What a day!!! My best ever in Orland!!
I have been setting up in Orland for more than 20 years and find it amazing that I could have such a tremendous day. The card biz is having its biggest boom I have ever seen. I have never sold so many cards!
I need to add more shows to ride out this wave. I am thinking of setting up at the Wilmot Flea Market next Sunday.
Back to Orland. I bought a large number of cards as well including a 1950 Bowman Pee Wee Reese, a bunch of Aarons from the 1960s, several Nellie Fox cards, and some 1971-72 basketball.
I capped a great day by having lunch with my pals Will, Joe and Charlie. See photo below. I didn't even mind the crappy drive home on the crappy 294.
Next up is my Salvation Army show on May 1st. Get ready for this one! I've added another room, the Game Room, located at the end of the hallway. There will be 24 tables in the game room bringing a total of 100 tables of cards in the whole building. I'll be set up in the Game Room along with 15 new dealers. Make sure to check it out!
A huge thank you to everyone who bought cards from me in Orland. It was so great to see everybody. I am looking forward to the next Orland show on May 23rd!