Message from the President June 2008

The Power of Color

By Brian Pitman, June 2008

The ICGA Annual Convention promises to be extra-colorful this year (if that is even possible) when we meet at the St. Louis Marriott West in July. Now as many of you know, we have been really amping up our display rooms over the past 3-4 years at the convention, even having three displays in three days one year, and this year is even more ambitious with seven different displays and seminars wrapped into one convention. ICGA hasn’t had this many seminars at one convention in a long time, and whether you are a newbie looking to learn more, or an experienced collector wanting to see some great glass in a variety of colors, this convention is for everyone.

Now in addition to the excellent educational and beautiful offerings of our convention, Jim Seeck really pulled a great auction out of his hat for us. He will be selling some highly treasured pieces from the collection of Marie Capps, as well as a handful of sought-after pieces from Marie McGee. Many saw a sampling of this auction at the recent HOACGA convention, and the auction will be pulling many in for the chance to buy. Make sure to bring your pieces to sell in the rooms as well, because with that many people wandering around, itchy to buy some glass, you may find this convention could also be a profit-maker for you, if you are so inclined. As we saw with the recent Keystone auction, prices in carnival are definitely on their way back up.

You will also want to bring your children or grandchildren to the convention. We selected a hotel that has plenty of fun facilities for the family (including swimming and more); and if you really want to have a blast, Six Flags is just down the road from the hotel, so you can take in a roller coaster if you really want to get crazy. We are also near a bunch of shopping and some nice restaurants, so those non-carnival spouses will have plenty to do while you are running from room to room with your price guides, your checkbook, and your desire to go a little crazy during your summer vacation.

One more thing about the hotel that I want to make clear (because we all know how much misinformation can come from people at the hotel when making reservations): we have cleared it for you to have pets. The official Marriott policy is no pets, but they made an exception for us (one of the last exceptions they are ever going to make as corporate has started cracking down.) Make your reservations like normal (don’t even mention pets because the person on the phone isn’t at the hotel, and they have no idea about our deal with the hotel). When you arrive, let them know you have a pet, and they will have you fill out the paperwork and pay a $75 deposit. When it comes time to checkout, let them know and they will come look at the room. As long as Fluffy, Fido or Honey hasn’t eaten the bed, you will be refunded your deposit, and you will be on your merry way. You do want, though, to try and keep your pet happy and not crazy loud during your stay, because if the (non-carnival) neighbors start to freak, then I will have to find ways to keep them from reporting you, and those ways are never pretty.

In the end, though, we are all going to have to realize that pets in a hotel is going by the wayside as fast as smoking in a hotel. Within 5 years, we will not be able to have pets (or cigarettes) in a hotel room at all. The powers that be have started cracking down, and we are either going to have to overthrow the hotel industry or deal with it. At least pets don’t give you cancer, right?

Now Bob and Sherry Cyza have been working huge amounts of hours to put together a fabulous 350 piece display room for you, and I know they still need some help, especially with the color “Smoke.” If you have a couple of pieces you think would work, please contact them and let them know so they can fill the gaps. They will thank you, and I thank you.

Other wonderful items in our convention will be our awesome ice cream social (which has been a lot of fun and totally bad for your health!), the hospitality room (and again, your contributions of food, drink or financial support is greatly appreciated by everyone), the silent auction (bring your donations and your desire to bid on the items!), and yet another wonderful game by Don and Barb Chamberlain. Those games have done great things in the past years by bringing people into the rooms with glass on display or for sale, and my favorite aspect has been the group of children asking questions and learning more about the glass. They are a wise investment for the future of carnival collecting…

So there it is, our convention. It is going to be fun, there are still a lot of surprises in the works that will blow a lot of people away (not going to reveal those here, you will just have to come and see), and all attending are going to have a really fun time. Will you be a part of that? I hope so.

See you in St. Louis!!

Brian Pitman