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Sports cards a big deal to showgoers

Courtesy of MCT

The 2011 Greater Ohio Trading Card Show and Convention will be in town beginning Saturday at Veterans Memorial.

This is the first time the event is being hosted by the Big Buddha Sports Cards, out of Mt. Sterling, Ohio.

“There have been different shows for a while now,” said Rodney Russell of Big Buddha. “Different promoters of them have stepped down, so we threw our hat in the ring to host it this time.”

The event will be more than collectors just showing off their cards. There will be numerous vendors coming to sell their cards as well as famous athletes and performers at the event to sign autographs and meet fans, Russell said.

“Pete Johnson (former Cincinnati Bengals HB) and Brutus Beefcake (a former professional wrestler) will be there signing autographs,” he said. The other 11 athletes attending the event include former Bengals fullback Ickey Woods and former Buckeye football players Ross Homan and Brian Rolle.

“Lots of people come to meet celebrities and have a chance to get autographs and take pictures,” Russell said, “but there will also be sports cards and history.”

While this event may be a big deal for sports cards collectors throughout Ohio, the industry as a whole isn’t as popular as it used to be, said Karry Stich of Starchild card shop in Gahanna.

“Once you start getting into the old stuff, I have individual cards,” he said, “but I don’t have boxes and boxes of the old stuff.”

His shop carries football, baseball, basketball and hockey cards.

“I have basketball cards probably going back to the ‘60s,” he said. “And the same goes for hockey.”

The vintage cards are the ones people really collect, said Jerry Hartman of Hartman’s Sports Cards on Morse Road.

“I have cards dating all the way back to the ‘50s and ‘60s,” he said. “Those are the ones that people want to collect because they will never lose their value. Since they will only go up in value, they’re hard to hold onto,” he said.  

And it isn’t just people who were around in the ‘50s and ‘60s collecting these cards.

“I have customers in their youth, who are only 4 or 5 years old, all the way up into their 80s,” Hartman said.

The event this weekend will have something for all of these collectors. There will be door prizes, raffles and a live auction at 2 p.m. Saturday, Russell said.

The event will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday. Admission is free for everyone as is parking for the first 100 attendees to the event each day.


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