After nearly nine years of operating the show, things have become routine. I wake up at the crack of dawn -- 4 a.m. Drive up to Oak Creek. I usually get there between 5:30 and 6 a.m. Once at the venue, I hit the ground running and start rearranging the tables and placing dealer names on all 122 tables.
It was warm in the building on Saturday and I broke a sweat early. I heard dealers pound on the door around 6:30 a.m. I don't let anyone in until I finish. Guys get frustrated with me but I got get everything done first! I tell the dealers to be there at 8 a.m., not 6:30 a.m., which gives me enough time to complete all my tasks.
With 84 dealers, this was my largest show to date. I find it funny how pessimistic some guys are. Many dealers were worried that no one would show up because of the holiday weekend. Well, I have been setting up on the Fourth of July weekend for decades and attendance as always been good. This day was no exception -- 432 people through the door! More than last month!! Take that, Pessimists!!
Most dealers reported good sales. Some had amazing sales. There were others that had poor sales. Like I said, there were 432 people in the building, if your sales were poor, that is on you, not me. I did my job.
Regular dealer Steve Zinn cancelled at the last minute so I set up on his tables in the gym. I had planned to set up in the gym any way because I observed last month that there were crowd flow issues. I observed big crowds in the front hallway, decent crowds in the Game Room and Fellowship Hall but lesser of a crowd in the gym.
I was hoping that by placing myself in the gym it would bring more people in there for my free packs of cards. I thought flow was better than last month but still needs some improvement.
I had nice sales at my tables early on. I was down to one helper as Rachel had to work at her real job. I was so thankful for Jason. What a great kid! Without him I would not have been able to set up.
There were a handful of no shows, the bane of card show promoting. Oddly, two guys who reserved tables, showed up but did not want to set up. One of them paid me, the other did not. If you reserve that space, you are required to pay for it!!
While I had the most dealers ever at my show, I had a hell of a time contacting folks on the waiting list prior to the show. It always surprises me when folks don't respond to my messages. Why get on the list then? I spent a ton of time contacting folks on the list. Then there are the guys who won't set up when I tell them they need to bring their own table. Prima donnas. You can purchase a table at Target and Walmart. What gets me is I see these same dealers set up at other shows where maybe 40 people walk through the door all day. I had 432 people walk through the door on Saturday! Go buy a table at Menards, you moron!!
Operating this show is tough! Jason relieved me at my tables at 11 a.m. then I spent the next several hours walking all four rooms collecting table fee from the dealers. I really appreciate the dealers who pay me first thing in the morning. Though, it is nice being able to chat with all 84 dealers. I had a bunch of new guys this month. The new guys are usually really enthusiastic and a real pleasure. A big thank you to all the dealers. You guys make the show. You are the reason 432 people came out on a holiday weekend!
I had one customer call me from Las Vegas and say he was flying in for the show. I wonder if he actually came out?
We had quite a few people drive up from Indiana, including dealer Jim C., who sold me a bunch of 1961 Topps high numbers. Thanks Jim! Paul P. also drove up from Oak Lawn, IL. Thanks Paul!
I gotta say I enjoyed being set up next to Scotty P., Jason G., Mike J. and across from my pal Dave M. It was a real nice day. I had Sloppy Joe around 9:30 a.m. for breakfast then I grabbed a brat around 1:30 p.m. I really appreciate the volunteers that work the concession stand.
Not a whole lot to report. The show ran smoothly. Attendance was great. I sold a bunch of stuff. I bought a bunch of stuff. Pretty much a perfect day.
I submitted my show dates for 2023 prior to the show and now have all those dates reserved for next year. I'll be running 12 shows on the first Saturday of every month in 2023. My only concern is that Mark warned me that the venue may increase my rental fee. I hope not but if it happens, I will have to raise my table fee. I am still the cheapest game in town at just 25 bucks a table, so I don't think it will be much of an issue if I gotta raise it to $30. Especially when I know I bring in more people than any other show around.
This show continues to roll! I really appreciate everyone who attended on Saturday. I know you had many other options on that day and it means I lot that you chose to come out to my show!
Next one is August 6 and I expect more of the same. I should have a bunch of new vendors as well.
In the meantime, I am setting up at two shows next weekend. I'll be in Fort Wayne, Indiana, for the first time in years on Saturday, July 9. I am looking forward to that one. Then on Sunday, July 10, I'll be back at the Schaumburg show for the first time in a few months.
See you guys next weekend!
Below are a couple of photos from the July 2, 2022, Oak Creek show.