Message from the President September 2022

One of the Best Ever!

Dear ICGA Member, I hope this issue of The Carnival Pump finds you finally starting to cool down from a blistering summer that brought all sorts of bad things (drought, fire, heat, storms for some and much more), but also found time to drop one of the best ICGA conventions in recent history on us. In the end, well more than 100 attendees came, enjoyed each other’s company, and found their way to bidding and buying glass in the second highest grossing carnival glass auction of all time! In the end, more than $800,000 was spent on the auction with several “OH MY GOSH!” prices included.

If you ever found yourself wondering “Hey self, I wonder what the most paid for a Millersburg Pipe Humidor is?” Well now, that answer would be $50,000 DOLLARS (for a green one) and it was the highest priced piece at the convention. But then, a total of 21 pieces sold for $10,000 or more at the auction!!! And a lot of the pieces sold had a lot of history in them. Remember the huge Rose Tree duel between Carlton Tarkington and Don Clark at the ICGA convention years ago when they each went for more than $30,000? Yep, the marigold was in this auction.

The only known Fenton Fern chop plate that sold for $41,000? Don owned it, sold at this auction.

The green Pipe Humidor’s friend, Amethyst? Also did well for $25,000 at this auction.

Phil Hessenius’ Ice Green Dandelion water pitcher that he bought from Tom Mordini one epic night at ICGA, and then sold a few years later for an enormous amount at an ICGA auction? Yep, sold here too.

In the end, a very large crowd had a very good time at the auction (lots and lots of dropped jaws, though), and both Jim and Jan Seeck (in tow with Mike, Rhonda and Kewpie Doll) did a fantastic job of selling a most excellent collection. I was thrilled with my purchases and I hope you got something at the auction as well.

But let me back up a few days. This convention was a difficult one for ICGA officers and Board Members. The hotel is going through a crisis (that many hotels are also experiencing) of staffing, which causes all sorts of problems (the restaurant at the hotel had 2 total workers all week, the banquet rooms were all setup by the Director of Sales, the front desk was overwhelmed a lot, which also meant our attendees were spread out over 8 floors, which meant a whole bunch of exercise to go see the rooms and displays.) For a large part, our attendees were super gracious in thanking the employees that were there for working their tails off to make the convention happen from a hotel perspective. I thank each of you who experienced this convention with all my heart for taking everything in stride and being the better people you most definitely are!

There are so many people to thank for this convention. Becky Cronin (our lifetime appointed Secretary) makes sure everything is ready to go once attendees arrive. Barb Chamberlain and husband Don made sure we had lovely new shelves for our displays and seminars (something they spent a lot of time designing and having built, then transporting them to the convention and setting them up!) If someone would like to take over that job, they would be most appreciative (it gets to be a physical burden, especially at the vintage ages many of us are approaching.) Carl and Eunice Booker worked all year to make sure our Electric! display room and seminar was both beautiful and shocking! Mike Hendron amazed us with a fantastic collection of Shriners memorabilia, including the iridized versions many of us covet! Galen and Kathi Johnson helped expand everyone’s knowledge by showing the pricing and identification tool they and the Hooked on Carnival team have been honing for the past several years. And Bill and Kenda Jeske did it yet again, with a wonderful multimedia banquet seminar presentation that took us back in time to the World’s Fair and amazed us with absolutely gorgeous glass!

But the real stars of this year’s convention were Ed and Heather Strawn! They took over the Hospitality Room reins from Lane Booker and ran with it. We upgraded our Hospitality this year to a huge space and Ed and Heather did a fantastic job providing lunch for everyone each day, as well as making our Pizza Party a tremendous success! Running a Hospitality Room at a convention is never a whole bunch of fun (you are always prepping and cleaning, so making it around to rooms to see glass and chat with people in their rooms is nearly impossible.) It was also difficult for them to get the time off to come to our convention (let alone work at it), so their efforts were met with tremendous appreciation. We hope they can do it again next year, they were so good!!

Thank you all for your efforts to make this convention the success that it was, and thank you to those who attended. We work to keep the tradition and history alive with your help and attendance!

So next year’s convention is already being planned. We have an amazing collection for auction already, and we are looking to return to St. Louis for next year as requested by the seller. And then in 2024, we will be back east somewhere!

Have a spectacular Autumn everyone, and look forward to our convention announcement in the December issue of The Carnival Pump!