I had heard good things about this show so in May I went to check it out. I do not know Woodstock very well. I have been to the court house but not much else. I relied on Siri to get me there. Wow! What a drive! Siri took me through winding rural roads most of the way -- an absolutely beautiful drive.
The church is located in the middle of a neighborhood. I would have never found it without Siri. In May, I observed a good crowd and a smattering of vintage on the dealer tables. I knew I would be taking a chance because it seems like vintage collecting is getting more and more of a specialized or niche area in the hobby. Modern cards are more popular than I have ever seen them.
I lucked out when I contacted Curtis, the friendly promoter of the Woodstock show, because a regular dealer had just cancelled and I was able to secure one 8-foot table. I decided to bring out all of my baseball binders. I actually know Curtis from the Midwest Sports Card Shows Facebook Page. Our good friend Ted Lee created the page maybe 10 years ago and made us administrators. Sadly, the great Ted Lee died several years ago. Man, I miss that guy! But Curtis and I have been managing the page in Ted's honor. Curtis actually does the bulk of the managing and does a tremendous job.
So, I woke up too early on Saturday morning. I thought the show started at 9 a.m. but the start is actually 9:30 a.m. I also wanted to give myself extra time to get there. Travel time is about 45 minutes from my house to the church. Again, I really enjoyed the drive through the countryside. McHenry County in Illinois is just a beautiful place.
I stopped off at Mickey D's on the way in and munched on my food during the drive. Load in was simple. Curtis gave me the first table by the front door. He also provided muffins for all the dealers. Set up was quick with just the binders to layout. The room slowly filled up with dealers.
I went and talked to old friend Tom, who is a regular dealer at this show. I ended up purchasing a bunch of cards from Tom including a 1933 Goudey Mickey Cochrane. Thanks Tom! I recognized the dealer up against the stage from Corky's old show in Elgin. Then behind me was Nick K., who has been setting up at my show in Oak Creek for quite a while. To my right, was a dealer I recognized from Corky's show as well but I forgot his name. He had a bunch of non-sports cards and a few hockey sets from the 1970s but his prices were a little high.
I did not know any of the other dealers. They were all modern dealers. I absolutely loved the father and son dealer team set up to my left. The son was 11 years old and was so enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and wheeling and dealing the whole show. See picture below.
There was a real nice crowd with a steady flow from early morning into the afternoon. I had a few sales. An older guy purchased a bunch of 1951 Bowmans. Ron, who I have known for a long time, found a bunch of cards. Then a couple who I know I have met in the past, maybe at Corky's show or quite possibly at one of Fred Copp's old shows purchased a bunch of Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers cards. Good old Larry and Carol found a large amount of cards for Larry's sets. See bottom photo. I've known these two since the dawn of time but this was the first time I was set up in their home town. A couple of other guys dinked around and purchased a handful of cards.
I received a lot of nice complements for my set up. I take a lot of time to price my cards and place them in numerical order in the binders. Not many dealers take the same time. The dealer by the stage told me I was too organized.
A couple of guys recognized me from my Oak Creek show. I saw others that I knew like Chris and Big Tim.
Overall sales were slow but I had a really good time. I thought attendance was excellent and would like to continue to do this show. I think I could develop a regular following if I could set up regularly. Unfortunately, there are just 20 tables at this show and Curtis could not tell me when he could get me back in -- which I totally understand.
At the end of the show Curtis asked me my thoughts on the show and what I thought he could do better. Honestly, I thought the show was perfect. I really liked the room. All the dealers were friendly and had great stuff. I thought it was really cool how Curtis gave away a pile of stuff. He had a few bins and a table by the front door where he was giving away cards and publications. I saw the dealer by the stage grab most of the publications. He made four or five trips to the free table to grab stuff. Most everyone who attended the show stopped and grabbed some of the free items. I also liked the large number of kids at the show and they all seemed to be having a great time. This is an excellent show, well run.
Obviously, if the space was larger, I think it would be easy to get more dealers. However, Curtis said he lives up the street and likes having the venue so close to home. I can't argue with that. I wish there was a show close to my house. Well, I will be waiting for Curtis's call because I'd like to set up at this show again.
In the meantime, I will be setting up at the Orland Park Civic Center on Sunday, June 27, 2021. I am going to bring out all of my baseball, basketball and hockey binders along with three display cases. Hope to see you Sunday in Orland!