2015 Central PA Sports Card Show Review

Hey!  Look at this!  Its a card show!  These are becoming rare at least where I live.  Outside of the annual Ephrata Lions Club Sports Card Show and National Sports Collectors Convention, there really aren’t that many shows worth going to anymore.  Last month I heard about the Central PA Sports Card Show from a dealer I met in Ephrata – VSM Sports Card Outlet.  It was held at the Lancaster Host Resort.  Judging by the flyer, it looked like it might be a decent show.  So I decided to give it a try.

I wasn’t sure what to expect, but there was a good supply of vendors.  A lot more than what I thought was going to be there.  Before making any purchases I like to make my way around the whole show.  There was a good mixture of vintage and modern cards.  Neither was too dominant.  All of the dealers were quite friendly and helpful too.  I’m a Harry Kalas collector, and that list of cards I need is small.  Not only is it small, but the cards are difficult to locate.  The only Harry Kalas item I saw all day was a duel bobblehead of Harry and Richie Ashburn, which I already own.  At one time I couldn’t find that bobblehead at all.  Now I see it all the time.

VSM Sports Card Outlet was where I spent most of my time and money.  In addition to high-end cards under glass cases, they had autographs and relics divided up in boxes.  I spent a chunk of time flipping through the Phillies section, but didn’t come up with anything I need.  But the fun of it is not knowing what you might find.  They also had the best supply of newer boxes.  I bought two boxes of 2015 Topps Five Star Baseball.

Throughout the day they had a steady run of autograph guests.  Guests included Sean Landeta, Lenny Moore, Lydell Mitchell, Brian Propp, and Bob “The Hound” Kelly.  The prices were very reasonable.  Sean Landeta was free with the $5.00 price of admission.  Lenny Moore was only $25.00 (20.00 for the autograph, and $5.00 for the photo op).  Both guys were really nice and happy to interact with their fans.  After signing my football, Sean Landeta gave me an autograph photo for free too.

The only negative part of the day really didn’t have to do with the show itself.  You had to walk down a few steps in order to get onto the show floor.  I don’t use steps because I’m in a wheelchair.  Luckily there was a ramp right next to the steps, but they had a table blocking it.  The table was there so people wouldn’t go down the ramp and skip out of paying the admission fee.  It was a little inconvenient having to move the table each time I went in and out of the show.

Another issue was the bathroom.  The Lancaster Host Resort really didn’t have a bathroom I could use.  The bathroom most people were using was nothing my wheelchair could even fit into.  According to the Lancaster Host Resort, I would’ve needed to hunt somebody down for a key and hop on a lift in order to get to the bathroom I had the best chance at using.  Even that one wasn’t the best.  Its an old hotel, and I guess that should be expected.

Overall it was a pretty nice show.  I would say that its about the same size as the Ephrata Lions Club Sports Card Show, maybe a little smaller or bigger.  The dealers were spread out a lot more here which can make it look bigger.  If they decide to have this show again next year, I’ll probably check it out as long as the autograph guests are different.

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Baltimore Colts halfback and 1975 Hall of Fame inductee Lenny Moore

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Retired punter Sean Landeta

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Sean Landeta had a very long career as a player (’83-’06).  This is one of the longest inscriptions I’ve ever received during an autograph signing.

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Landeta’s rings from Super Bowl XXI and XXV

Card of the Day: Ron Rivera 1988 Topps RC #81

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Card of the Day: Emmitt Smith 2003 Upper Deck NFL Patch Collection #22

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Dawson ’15 Topps Valor Auto Contest!

This contest is for a Paul Dawson 2015 Topps Valor RC Auto #’ed/800.  Good luck!!!

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Contest Details:

  • This contest will end Friday, December 4, 2015 @ 8:00 p.m. EST.
  • To enter, please leave a comment in this post.
  • You can enter once per day.
  • The winner will be selected at random.
  • Please provide a valid e-mail address when entering.
  • The winner will receive an e-mail when the contest is over.
  • The winner has one week to send me their contact information or the contest will be held again.
  • Once the contest is over, I will need the winner’s mailing address so I can ship them this card for FREE!!!

Hockin ’15 Topps Heritage MiLB Auto Contest Winner Announced

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Congrats to dawgpaws on being the lucky winner of the Grant Hockin 2015 Topps Heritage Minor League Baseball Auto.  Once dawgpaws sends me their mailing address, I will ship this card ASAP.  Thanks!

“Pin-Up” of the Week: 1996 National Baseball Hall of Fame Abner Doubleday 100th Anniversary

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Here is another pin from my collection.  Its not one that you see very often.  This was an impulse buy while attending the National Sports Collectors Convention in 2009.  I’d never seen it before, and didn’t know that much about it.  I still don’t know that much about it.  The pin commemorates the 100th anniversary of when the first baseball game was played in 1839.  Its dated 1996 on the back, along with the National Baseball Hall of Fame name.

Abner Doubleday is the supposed inventor of baseball.  Most baseball historians don’t believe this though.  There simply just isn’t enough evidence to prove it.  I don’t think he did.  Doubleday was a cadet at West Point at the time he is said to have invented the game.  His family didn’t live in Cooperstown, New York anymore at that time either.  I think people were looking for the game’s origin, and decided to pin it on Doubleday.  They based it all on a lot of blurry-eyed loose stories.  Despite all this lack of credible evidence, the Baseball Hall of Fame was built in Cooperstown.  Doubleday Field was built on the cow pasture where Abner Doubleday is said to invented the game.  That’s where they play the Hall of Fame Game each year.  As long as the Baseball Hall of Fame is located in Cooperstown, the Doubleday myth will always be a subject fans will talk about.  I don’t see them moving it anytime soon.

Flashback Product of the Week: 1984 Topps Milton Bradley Championship Baseball

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Tabletop board games based on baseball have been around a lot longer than you would think.  Some can be dated all the way back to the late 19th and early 20th century.  Those older games can be worth quite a bit depending on the condition.  As the decades rolled by, more and more baseball board games began to surface.  Baseball wasn’t the only sport to get the board game treatment, but that’s the sport I’m dealing with here today.  Don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten the cultural impact of electronic football.

There is a point in time where I believe every baseball superstar either had their own board game, or was included in one.  Guys like Roger Maris, George Brett, Steve Garvey, and Mickey Mantle all had their own board game.  Did any of these games revolutionize the board game industry?  No.  It was a cash grab.  Slapping the names and faces of a famous baseball players on a game can help move them off the store shelves.  The only reason people buy these games today is for the collector value.  I highly doubt collectors are buying them to actually play.

Some of these games are fairly simple.  Others can be very complicated with an endless list of tedious rules.  One of the better reviewed games was released in 1984 by Milton Bradley.  It was called Championship Baseball.  Topps created (30) cards for this game.  The players include stars like Pete Rose, Rod Carew, Cal Ripken, Jr., and Reggie Jackson.  Even though the cards were made by Topps, the set was not licensed by Major League Baseball Properties.  That is why the team names and logos are airbrushed out.  On the back of each card you’ll find batting records that have been converted into dice roll combinations.  You basically roll the two die, compare the results to a chart on the back of the player’s card, and that’s it.  The game play is quite simple.

Given that this set was cheaply made, and contains no rookies, the demand isn’t there.  You can easily pickup a sealed set for under $10.00.  A complete game is worth about $20.00.


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