The weather was great, despite a forecast of some rain, the walk from the trolley station to the convention center was pleasant, and the ANA National Money Show turned out to be all that I expected. I had two purposes for attending the NMS. First, I had signed on as a volunteer for Saturday but knew the heavy lifting would be at the end of the show, when we had to pack up our considerable amount of "local sponsor club" stuff for storage until the next show in May. So, I had duties to be sure, helping out at the exhibits area, manning the club booth, and walking the show in my ANA Ambassador shirt to answer questions and to point people toward the museum exhibit where one could view a 1913 Liberty Head Nickel, an 1804 Dollar, a 1933 Eagle (one of about 20 legal to own), and the fantastic 1943 Bronze Cent. There were several other exhibits as well, but those were the most popular.
Just interacting with the attendees was the best part of volunteering. I especially enjoyed interacting with YNs and their Parents as they came to our club booth during their treasure hunt. We were question #1 on their form, "What was the first year the United States produced coins?" The possible answers were 1776, 1793, 1804, or 1812. I probably assisted about 15 Juniors with their form and with a wee bit of coaching, they were all able to get their first question correct. Our booth had a big box of foreign coins and each YN was able to choose two coins as soon as they got the correct answer. Seeing their eager faces and their happy parents, made the whole volunteering experience worth much more to me than it probably did to them.
But volunteering was only half the purpose. Second, I had a want list and was determined to find, an NGC slabbed 1918 Lincoln Illinois, a raw 1925 Canadian Cent for my Whitman folder, and an NGC slabbed NO-VDB Cent, 1909-1917. So many temptations along the way, I could have easily blown my entire budget before I even spotted any of my wanted items, but I persevered and finally found the 1918 Lincoln, in MS65, with a CAC Bean to boot. Now that particular purchase pretty much blew my budget but luckily I had already had an offer accepted for the 1925 Canadian Cent, from EBAY, that same morning. I never did find the Slabbed NO-VDB, but they are plentiful on EBAY and I will buy it soon. Finally, I saw something that brought waves of nostalgia to my little collector heart, it was the SILVER STORY with Silver Certificate, Morgan Dollar, Peace Dollar, and Silver Flakes for a price I could not pass up, so I took the last of my budget and bought it too, just $50.00.
Freebies were a little scarce on that final day of the Con, political campaigning for the ANA Board was occurring so I got a very nice token from Mr. Donald Kagin, he is running for ANA President, and I also received a poker chip issued by Mr. Thomas Uram, who is running for ANA VP. Both men spent some time talking with my partner and I at the PAN booth, I like their enthusiasm for the Hobby and I also like their can-do attitudes. To top it all off, I met and shook hands with one of my all-time Numismatic heroes, Mr. Clifford Mishler, I told Mr. Mishler how much I loved his stories of convention trips over the years and I only wish I had asked him to take a photo with me.
I can't wait until August of 2020 when ANA returns to Pittsburgh. I can guarantee you, I will be there on the floor again doing my Ambassador duties.
One interesting note, as I was searching the bourse for my 1918 Lincoln/Illinois, it became apparent that PCGS slabs outnumbered NGC slabs by at least 5 to 1 all over the floor.