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PNNA Home / Conventions / ANA / 2009 (summer)

ANA Convention (World's Fair of Money®) - Los Angeles, California
August 5-9, 2009

Report by Larry Gaye

I always enjoy going to the ANA shows. The Los Angeles ANA was a very different experience for everyone. It was the first show the ANA has charged the general public an admission fee. Numbers were certainly down though I’m convinced it wasn’t the fault of the fee; just the fact that so many locals won’t go to downtown LA. The show was held at the LA Convention Center, an excellent venue especially for those involved in the set up of the convention. A three day Jonas Brother’s engagement at the Staple Center created gaggles of screaming female tweens that had to be negotiated by all.

The visitor/membership sign-in process was totally different from what we all had become used to. Because of the new entry fee, separate lines and kiosks were needed for existing members, newly signed up members, and the general public. For the first time monies had to be collected for admission fees. The whole process was a challenge that the National Volunteers and ANA staff did a masterful job of accomplishing.

While the ANA charged the general public $6.00 per day per person (kids were free) it offered an introductory ANA membership for $18.00 per year. With that membership program there is no printed copy of The Numismatist, only the online version. A special 13th copy of The Numismatist was printed to act as the show directory and program which everyone who attended received. It was an excellent way to showcase what the ANA has to offer collectors. I have kept mine as a collector’s item; I have programs from all ANA shows since 1997.

The weather was great; for gosh sakes, its Southern California! Suzanne and I had one event we signed up for to the La Brea Tar Pits cancelled due to lack of interest, imagine that? So we called a cab and went on our own; it was a fantastic experience. The cabby was a LA Native and gave us a private tour of points of interest on the way to the Pits. We made arrangements for him to pick us up when the park closed and he was right on time and well tipped. We found a really nice restaurant which we visited several times. It featured great Mediterranean style food at reasonable prices, a great wine selection, and a dynamite staff. We felt right at home and turned a lot of folks on to it.

Giant ground slothWooly mammothThe first photo (at left) is a skeleton of a giant ground sloth, one of many pre-historic animals which became trapped in the famous tar pits. The second photo (at right) is a wooly mammoth skeleton.

Numismatically I spent the least I have ever spent at an ANA show. Most of the material was encased in the clatter and clank of slabs and not in my areas of interest. I did pick up some really neat Arab/Byzantine coins for my collection at a great price so I was happy. Much happier than Suzanne in that the first three days of our sojourn at the hotel found the pool closed because some fun seeker decided to “poo” in the pool. This action caused another reaction in that Suzanne was quite pissed at not being able to swim. Again, IT’S SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA! Once the pool clouds cleared all was well with the world.

We had a great time seeing old friends and meeting new ones. Lee and Joyce Kuntz were the General Chairs for the show and their volunteers did a fantastic job. Downtown LA is a vibrant area rapidly becoming a place where people live, and that is the key to a vibrant community. I can tell you, the numismatic community had a ball. See you in Fort Worth, Texas March 25-27, 2010. I’m planning on eating a lot of Texas BBQ!

{Please note that the Fort Worth show is now scheduled for Thursday-Saturday, and that the Boston anniversary convention is scheduled for Tuesday-Saturday, August 10-14, 2010. The ANA will hold a member appreciation barbecue March 24 at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing Western Currency Facility. The event will feature special guided tours, live music and some of the best barbecue in Texas.}