Wednesday, June 8, 2016

My first card show

My transportation for the day
This past weekend was the annual summer card show put on by the Washington State Sports Collectors Association.  When I started getting back into collecting cards I wanted to attend a card show.  Fortunately, I found out about this show before it happened.  Even more fortunate for me was that the card show was pretty much in my backyard! After biking to 7/11 for a Slurpee (which was absolutely necessary on this 90 degree day) I headed down to the show.

Only half of the room with more to the right and behind me
This was my first card show so let me talk about it a little bit before I get to the goodies.  All the dealers were really nice and it was cool to see the hobby in action.  There were a lot of cards on display, new and old, as well as other sports memorabilia.  It wasn't that packed on Sunday but a few of the dealers I talked to said that Saturday was really busy, which was good to hear.  Still, most of the dealers still had their tables set up until closing, which must mean that they were doing good business on Sunday as well.  I'm kinda glad I went on Sunday because I think dealers were probably more willing to let cards go for a little cheaper.

First Stop

Top: 2008 Topps Chrome Insert -- 2006 Topps Chrome
Middle: 2008 Upper Deck - Starquest (common) -- 2006 SP Authentic (serial numbered) -- 2008 Topps Chrome - X-Fractor
Bottom: 2008 Topps Heritage - Black Back (short print) -- 2008 Topps Updates -- 2009 Topps Updates
Heading into the show I didn't have any sense of what I was looking for so I let the cards do the talking.  The first table I stopped at had an assortment of football, baseball, and basketball. Eventually I honed in on some Ichiro cards.  The cards from this box were advertised as $1 per card or 6 for $5.  My first thought was that this was going to be a pricey purchase but it turned out to be a good deal.  

I love the 2008 Topps design so I the two cards I found with it were a must have.  In addition, the x-fractor parallel was neat looking.  I loved the green looking Starquest card.  The serial number card was worth a pickup since I knew it would cost less than the dollar.  The short print heritage was also another one worth getting because of the low overall price.  All told I purchased 7 cards for about $0.85 each.

1993-94 Ultra

1996-97 Upper Deck

1992-93 Ultra + 1 Collector's Choice and McDonald's card

This same dealer also had a 5 cent car box with an with an assortment of basketball.  He had a deal of 25 cards for a dollar and I got 27.  He had a few 1996-97 Upper Deck cards and since that is one of my favorite sets, I grabbed all I could see not worrying about duplicates of my collection since they were so cheap.  I've also decided recently that I enjoy the 1992-93 Ultra set design and I bought a few cards to get me going on my set collection. It's a shame Fleer got lazy and reused the design for the 1993-94 Ultra set but I'm not too disappointed.

Second Stop

Top Row: #B25 1996-97 Collector's Choice Insert; #220 1995-96 Collector's Choice
Bottom Row: #103 & #193 1995-96 Fleer Metal
Top Row: #179 94-95 Fleer Ultra,; #FB20 1996-97 Upper Deck Insert; #117 1996-97 Upper Deck
Bottom Row: #179 1996-97 Upper Deck; #9 2001-02 Fleer Authentix; #295 1993-94 Upper Deck
I didn't know I wanted to build up my Gary Payton but when I found a dealer who had a big box of nothing but Payton cards at 10 cents a piece, my fate was sealed.  The cards were mostly base but I did find a few inserts.  I managed to find four cards for sets I was collecting; three Upper Deck and one 96-97 Collector's Choice.  I made it an even 10 cards to break off a dollar..

Third Stop

2014 Panini National Treasures - Colossal Materials #46 (09/99)
Next stop was a dealer who had a lot of memorabilia/serial numbered cards including quite a few Seahawks and Mariners.  These cards were definitely pricier than all the previous cards I was looking at but I wanted to come away with at least once jersey card.  I ended up with a very nice Kyle Seager card.  A large teal blue patch, numbered 9/99.  This is a Panini card so no mention of Mariners (boo), only "Seattle Baseball Club." The low serial number for both the specific card (9) and the overall set (99) appealed to me because they were so low so I happily paid my $6.  This dealer also had the Will Ferrell Mariners card when he played for 10 different teams during Spring Training.  The card was $6 as well and I didn't quite want to pay that much.  I don't know the value of that card so it may have been fair but it didn't pass the gut check.

Fourth Stop

1992-93 Ultra
Next was another box of assorted basketball cards featuring well known players.  I flipped through not really looking for specific players but then I saw a 92-93 Ultra NBA Jam Session card and found another.  I liked this set so I thought I would see how many more I could find.  I ended up with 6 (including one duplicate that I had already bought that day, doh!) for the low price of 75 cents,

Final Stop

1996-97 Collector's Choice
Dealers were starting to pack up and I was getting tired so I made one last pass around some tables I hadn't looked at yet.  After looking through another basketball binder I found 3 cards from the 96-97 Collector's Choice Set I didn't have yet.  I don't have any proof but I feel like these One on One will be harder to find in the wild since they feature all-stars.  Three cards for $2. Not a bad deal.

Take away the $3 admission fee and I spent only $20 for over 50 cards. A successful day!


  1. Sounds like you had a good time. It's been a few years since my last card show, but hope to remedy that soon.

    I also know where to send some of my basketball cards now. I have quite a few I tried to dump a few years back with no luck.

    1. Are there card shows ever close to you?

      I'm up for trading for basketball cards so I'm sure we could make a deal some time!

    2. There's one every few months about an hour away and a couple more about 100 miles away. The closest one usually falls on a day I'm busy, but I might be able to swing at least one of the shows before the end of the year.

  2. Looks like a good show. Wish I could attend...sadly it's about as far away as physically possible, being in NY. For what it's worth, you can get a lot of the 1992-93 Ultra cards out of repacks...they are a staple in there. I can't remember the last time I bought a 75 card repack and didn't get 6 or more 1992-93 Ultra.

    1. Repacks are probably where I first found the Ultra cards, lol

  3. Nice haul, and nice show by the looks of it!