Here's my RCNA
It was a week a lot of us had been looking forward to for months, if not years. The RCNA
's annual convention took place in Ottawa from July 20 to July 24, and was, by all accounts, a success. Volunteers from the Ottawa Numismatic Society worked hard all week to staff the Registration Desk and Hospitality Suite, while the RCNA
managed tours, the symposium, and the bourse floor. Thanks to everyone who lent a helping hand to put it together.
The show was a home game for me, which was a treat. I arrived first thing Thursday morning to help out with what little needed to be done on the bourse floor, like cleaning cases, and to contribute what I could to manning the Registration Desk. Dealer setup began at 1:00pm and lasted until 5:00pm. This is always one of the more hectic times during a show when dealers are simultaneously trying to get their stuff together and pillage other dealers' inventories before all the best material is gone. It was a fun but I was exhausted by end of the day and headed straight home afterward.
Friday morning it was showtime. I took a cab downtown and arrived by 8:30am. The bourse was already busy with dealers getting set up, and 30 minutes later the Registrants were allowed in. The show was on. As president of the host club I participated in the official ribbon-cutting ceremony at 9:45am with Steve Woodland, president of the RCNA
, Dr. Ralph Ross, president of the ANA
, and Marie Lemay, Mint Master and CEO of the Royal Canadian Mint
. Afterward it was back to my table for what was the most intense two hours of the show. The room was bustling with collectors from opening until noon, and sales were brisk. Things died down considerably around lunch time and remained subdued through the end of the day. I grabbed dinner with a friend around 4:30pm and then hung around the hotel bar until about 7:00pm. After that it was back home to get ready for Saturday.
Saturday started off slow. There weren't too many collectors on the floor that morning, and not much seemed to be happening. I went for lunch at the Tim Hortons connected to the hotel with a couple of friends and got back to my table around 1:30pm. That was when things started to pick up. It was a pleasant and totally unexpected surprise that Saturday afternoon was hopping. I don't know where everyone was earlier in the day, but it seemed like they all arrived at the same time after lunch. Sales were strong, and it was great to continue meeting people and putting faces to names. By 5:00pm it was time for a beer with some advanced collectors. We spent about an hour trading war stories and talking about grading, major auctions, and our experiences in the hobby. It was great. Around 6:15pm I went up to the penthouse floor, where the RCNA
Banquet was being held. There was an hour-long reception before doors opened, providing the opportunity to speak with collectors, researchers, dealers, publishers, and others involved in Canadian numismatics. The banquet lasted more than two hours and included a presentation on Canadian banknote counterfeiters as well as the awards ceremony. The banquet was followed by a reception in the Hospitality Suite, again providing the opportunity to speak with convention-goers. After a long day, I got home around 11:30pm.
Sunday, the final day of the show, was dead. Dealers were closing up shop and finalizing sales, collectors were saying their goodbyes, and everyone seemed to be looking at their watches waiting for 2:00pm to come around. It was a long week, but a good week. I'm looking forward to the next one.