The 2016 National Has Begun!!!

I made it to the National!!!  This is the sixth one I’ve attended.  While picking up my media credentials I was greeted by Nate Berkus, one of the sons of National co-founder Mike Berkus who passed away last year.  He looked very familiar, and it turned out to be the same Nate Berkus who has been seen on T.V. a lot.  He is a really popular interior designer.  It was a fun little Easter egg to start off the National.

During the VIP Party sponsored by Topps, I was able to get former Phillies pitcher Mitch “Wild Thing” Williams to sign my bat.  Art Shamsky, Roy White, and Eddie Giacomin were also signing autographs.  Steve Garvey was suppose to be there, but canceled due to a family medical emergency.  The food is really good.  Convention center pizza is the best.  It doesn’t flop around which makes it easy to eat and look around at stuff.

The show opened at 3:30 p.m. for VIPs.  I handed out a bunch of Sports Card Info pins to various people.  Topps allows you to get your own card made right there on the spot.  Ultra-Pro gave me some free top loaders and penny sleeves which I needed to protect my card.

From what I can tell, Marty’s Sports Card Exchange has the best prices on wax boxes.  He usually does.  Before leaving for the night, I picked-up some packs and a box of 2016 Bowman Baseball to break at the Topps booth tomorrow.  Based on what I saw tonight, it looks like there will be a wait at the Topps booth in order to get your promo packs.  This is because they just can’t break the seal on a box and call it a day.  Topps needs to see each pack ripped open.  When you have people show up with cases, it can take awhile.  If they just broke the seal on a box, people could come back with the packs from the same box and double-dip.

It was a great start to the 2016 National.  Who knows what will happen tomorrow.

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Former Phillies pitcher Mitch “Wild Thing” Williams (left)

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Got my own Topps card made.  Its an extreme SP.

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The 35th National Has Begun!

Its official.  The 35th National Sports Collectors Convention has begun.  Autographs, cards, and promos are flying all over the place.  Every single collector in the world should be in Cleveland right now.

I arrived in plenty of time to obtain my VIP and Guest/Media credentials.  Then off to the VIP Party I went.  After eating some pizza and a cookie, the show opened to VIPs at 3:30pm.  Take a look!

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7x All-Star Dale Murphy signing at the Freedom Cardboard booth.

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Now for the pickups.  While waiting in line for Dale Murphy, I just happened to be standing next to the Topps booth.  I decided to pickup a box of 2014 Topps Minis.  With every purchase of a Topps Minis box, you get a jumbo card made just for the show.  I picked Mike Trout.

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These OYO minifigures were actually the first promos I got upon entering the show.

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I stopped by Marty’s Sports Card Exchange and bought a box of 2014 Allen & Ginter.  The I went to Blowout Cards and bought another just so I could get the Johnny Manziel Beckett Cover card.  Both boxes were unwrapped at the Topps booth and I got my Abreu and Tanaka exclusive National mini promos.  I still need to go through my boxes to see what I got.

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