Ephrata Lions Club Sports Card Show Turns 40 Years Old

For the past 40 years the Ephrata Lions Club has held their annual Sports Card Show & Auction.  To keep a show going like this for 40 years is quite impressive.  This is the longest-running one-day show on the east coast.

I’ve been attending this show since 1997.  Each year they have at least one autograph guest.  To celebrate their 40th anniversary, two signers were placed on the schedule.  First up, signing at 11:00 was former Phillies manager, and 2008 World Series champion Charlie Manuel.  Second, signing at 11:30 was former Eagles tight end, and Super Bowl LII champion Brent Celek.

Both Charlie Manuel and Brent Celek arrived on time, and had a steady line of collectors wanting their autographs.  One of the best things about this show is the cost.  Charlie Manuel was only $25 for any item.  Brent Celek was $30 for flats, and $40 for premiums.  Not bad at all.  Only (250) tickets were sold for each guest.  I was ticket #11 for Charlie Manuel.

(70) dealers, plus the items for the auction take up about two basketball courts.  Admission is $5.  You want to hear about a deal?  Lunch consisted of (2) hot dogs, (2) bags of chips, and a bottle of water.  All of that for $5.  Its a great fundraiser.  I believe the cost, combined with great autograph guests is why this show has survived so long.

Is it the biggest show?  Of course not.  That honor belongs to the National.  But what it does have is a fantastic following, core group of dealers, and a lot of nice stuff.

If you’re a Penn State, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, and/or Philadelphia Phillies fan, this is the show for you.  Talk about a heavy concentration of those teams.  There usually is a good mix of both vintage and modern cards.  At least two dealers were selling new wax boxes.  Products that were released on Friday 3/29 were available to purchase at the show on Saturday 3/30.  Tons of dollar boxes for you to sit down at and flip through too.

My main Phillies guy I collect is former broadcaster and Hall of Famer Harry Kalas.  He doesn’t have a ton of stuff to collect.  On Saturday, I ran into four Harry Kalas/Richie Ashburn bobbleheads that the Phillies gave out in 2002.  I also ran into a Harry Kalas auto from 2005 Upper Deck Sweet Spot Classic.  You know there is a great concentration of Phillies memorabilia at a show when you run into that much Harry Kalas stuff.

In addition to meeting Charlie Manuel and getting his autograph on my bat, I picked up a few neat items for my collection.  Great deals could be found.  An older gentleman had a couple of tables setup inside the door.  From him I got a Penn State Nittany Lion bobblehead from 2002 that was part of a deal with McDonald’s.  I also bought a Hartland Collectibles statue of a hot dog vendor from 2006 from the same guy.  Total impulse buy, but looks great on my shelf.

One of my favorite souvenirs from the day was a freebie.  The Ephrata Lions Club put together a multi-page booklet that documents the history of the show.  Very cool!

I highly recommend checking this show out.  Definitely worth it.  They usually hold it the last Saturday in March at the Ephrata Recreation Center.

Former Phillies manager, and 2008 World Series champion Charlie Manuel.

Charlie Manuel’s autograph on my bat.

Neck deep in it.

Penn State Nittany Lion bobblehead from 2002 that was part of a deal with McDonald’s.

Hartland Collectibles statue of a hot dog vendor from 2006.

Free booklet documenting the history of the show.

Autograph guests through the years.  The show began in 1979, but signers didn’t start until 1980.

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Card of the Day: Old Hoss Radbourne 1976 Shakey’s Pizza Baseball’s Immortals #25

Sports Card Info Turns 7 Today

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Rolen Origins Jersey Contest! – NOW CLOSED

This contest is for a Scott Rolen 2005 Upper Deck Origins Old Judge Materials Jersey.  Good luck!!!

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Contest Details:

  • This contest will end Friday, August 22, 2014 @ 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!!!

Card of the Day: Cannonball Crane 1887 N172 Old Judge Ready To Pitch

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Sports Card Info Turns Two!!!

Today Sports Card Info turns two years old.  Two years ago today I started Sports Card Info over on Blogger, but for some crazy reason Google shut me down because they thought I was spam.  I originally started SCI because I wanted to link from the Beckett Message Boards to some of the guides I had written on cards.  Since Beckett wouldn’t allow users to have a link in their signature to eBay, I had to move some of my popular guides over to Blogger.  In May of 2008 I moved the site over to WordPress since I was shut down and the site has grown steadily ever since.  Thanks to the now retired Mario from Wax Heaven, I have been able to obtain new products from Press Pass, TRISTAR, and hopefully Upper Deck soon to review and use for contests.  Wax Heaven gave me some great ideas to help further improve my blog.  Blowout Cards is now an official sponsor of SCI too.  In return for displaying their logo in the sidebar, they give exposure to specific blog posts I send to them.  When I started blogging two years ago I never thought I would be teaming up with manufacturers and distributors.  As of right now, SCI has received well over 100,000 total hits and averages about 400 visitors per day.  2009 was a great year for SCI and I hope 2010 goes even better.  I’d like to thank everyone that has visited this year and has taken part in many of the contests.

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Connie Mack’s Rookie Card

I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again.  Someday I hope to own a card from the original Old Judge Tobacco set.  Being some of the first mass produced baseball cards makes these super rare and expensive.  While browsing eBay I came across a Connie Mack from this historical set.  Mack has at least two different cards and you barely ever see one thats real.  Most of the time you’ll find posters and reprints featuring this card.  In a way I guess you could consider this Mack’s rookie card.  One of the many problems collectors have with these cards is that they are usually found trimmed.  You can clearly see that with this Mack at the bottom of the card.  Even though this card has been altered, it still sold for over $500.00.  Every time I see a reasonably priced Old Judge card at a show, I quickly find that it has been altered.

Topps will soon be releasing a product called T206.  One of the big hits you can pull is a Ty Cobb booklet which features an original Cobb T206 on one side and a cut signature on the other.  I’d like Upper Deck to revive their Old Judge product and do something like that.  If they made a Connie Mack card like that Cobb, I’d probably go crazy!

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