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Nihonto/Military Antiques Show in Charleston, SC


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I am trying to gage interest in a Nihonto/Military Antiques show in Charleston, SC. I used to live in the Midwest and regularly attended the Chicago Token-Kai, the Louisville Show of Shows/National Gun Day, and the Pittsburg MAX Show. I was also a member of the Ohio Valley Military Society, that held the various OVMS shows across the midwest. Now that I'm down in Charleston, I am missing the exposure to those shows. If I could gather the interest from sellers, I'm sure the interested buyers would not be a problem. I have chatted with other collectors in South Carolina, North Carolina and parts of Georgia that would enjoy a Charleston venue to buy, sell and trade Nihonto and Military antiques.

I have had tables many times at the Show of Shows Military Antiques show, and many local gun shows. I have multiple venues capable of hosting such an event and can make a decision based upon the amount of exhibitors interested. I would also like to hear from those interested in attending too.

It goes without saying that security of the venue will be provided, as well as insurance. If I were rich, I would host the event for free, but want to keep the cost as low as possible for the exhibitors and the attendees. I honestly don't care if I lose money on this event, as long as it is good for the exhibitors and the attendees. Nothing happens if you wait on others to do everything. I am taking the initiative to get things rolling. I will also hand it off to someone better qualified, if need be.

 

  1. What time of year works best for everyone? Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer? NOTE!!! Summer in Charleston is HOT!!!. October and November is still decent with temps in the 60's during the day.
  2. Hotel attached to the venue or within walking distance? Or does that even matter?
  3. Exhibitors, speak-up if interested!
  4. Attendees, speak-up if interested! 

 

This is an open discussion. This show is for the exhibitors to make money and the attendees to find the things that are not normally found here in the southeast.

As an exhibitor, tell me what you like about other shows, that you would like to see at this one. Tell me also the things you don't like. 

Attendees, tell me and the exhibitors what you really want to see at the event, and things you would rather not see.

 

Charleston is a very scenic and historic town. Charleston was one of the original 13 colonies, a key city during the revolutionary war, and the site of the first shot of the civil war. A very historic town for our historic Nihonto. I promise to help exhibitors and attendees alike, enjoy their time here. I can be your personal concierge for your needs while visiting the area.

 

Let the conversations begin!

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27 minutes ago, b.hennick said:

Mark Jones, who is a member here, runs the Chicago show and he and his family do  a wonderful job. I am sure that he could provide more information than the typical table holder. 

I am getting to know Mark and Gray very well. I spent alot of time with Mark in Florida at the Orlando show. I would love to have Mark and Gray exhibit, or even run the show. I know from experience that putting on shows is alot of work. I would be willing to do all the leg work of arranging things, since I live here.

 

You have a wealth of knowledge Barry. Come be a guest teacher, I mean speaker. <-- See what I did there.

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I have traveled down from NJ for the last 4-5 years to the Orlando Japanese Sword Show. I always shared a couple tables with my friend and mentor that lives on Florida. This year he didn’t want to get a tape so I had one myself. A lot of miscellaneous Japanese sword books and other sword stuff. Though I would not be a table holder I would be a spectator. I like cooler weather, not cold, just cooler. I also like a show that is at a hotel so that people like me that travel can stay at the show. I guess that a show place with a hotel next to or across from like Louisville would also work for me. Shows with displays are always great. Like the Orlando show a few seminars are also a plus. Good luck with setting something up. Like was already said and it sounds like you already know Mark has always treated me well at the Orlando show and is a great person.

     MikeR

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it is hard to start (or run ) a show. Bill Green tried Philadelphia and Baltimore but neither received much support .  You would have to pick a date that is not close to another sword show and does not conflict with a "big" other show.  maybe October or early November. Having the show in/at a hotel seems to work for the other sword shows. Having it near a large airport helps (if you want people to come from a distance it needs to be convenient, people prefer direct flights not connections especially when traveling with swords).  If you are going to try i would say start small, and manage the growth.  Orlando started with a couple dozen tables and is growing.  You could start a study group or club and expand from that.  If you have a show i would try and attend and support it.

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Thanks for chiming-in Mark. The weather in Charleston is still comfortable in October and November...even December. I ride motorcycles year round and have even gone on the jet-ski on New Years day. 

As much as I would love to have a venue at or very near Charleston harbor, but that is a 20 minute drive from the airport. There are many other venues near the airport that I could arrange. My dream would be to hold the event at Patriots Point on-board the USS Yorktown carrier. Expensive venue, but can be done.

Breeze Airways is a new airline that has direct flights to Charleston and is very cheap, but their origin cities are limited.

I appreciate your support Mark, and thank you for being the biggest supporter of my addiction. I highly enjoy the katana and monster yari.

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Hi Dan.

I would make every effort to attend - for me, just a 6 hour drive. As Mark had said, start small as Bob Elder had done in Orlando. BTW that show is likely to move to February and so an October or November date before the holiday season commences seems workable.

 

A show start up is full of logistic/operations issues BUT, in my view, marketing a new show is probably the top concern. If there are other antique/gun events to provide synergy to a first show that might also be helpful.  

 

Wishing you success.

 

Mark 

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Many thanks Mark!

 

I will have a table set-up at the local gun and knife show in early September. I will be making some additional connections with antique gun dealers and other military antique dealers. I really hope to put something together for next year.

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  • 1 month later...

Just had a great weekend of networking with others at our regional gun show. I now have multiple antique gun dealers, a couple American Revolutionary war and Civil War dealers, a few WWI & WWII dealers, and last but not least, 3 local Japanese sword collectors who would like to have a table for the first time ever. We have one last gun & knife show to attend at Myrtle Beach, SC in October. I will continue to recruit exhibitors there for the show.

 

Now it is down to nailing down a spring show or fall show. I do NOT want to set a date too close to the very well established and awesome Chicago show, which by the way is April 22-24, 2022. http://www.chicagoswordshow.com/

 

Middle of March 2022 is a possibility, and November is a possibility too.

 

Please chime in!

 

Dan

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3 hours ago, Stephen said:

Id love to make it Dan, but i refuse to fly...and a ten min drive is a stretch.

I appreciate you wanting to attend. In the past, I would have said you can attend, in spirit. Now I would say to you, we will get pics and vids so you can attend virtually. Seeing how many posts appeared for the pics and vids taken during the San Francisco show, I think it would be great (with permission of course) to video each vendors set-up and announce who they are, and an email or phone number. That way, if someone sees that particular do-dad they have been looking for since you was knee high to a grasshopper, they will know who to contact. If that vendor is getting sales after the show from a simple video, that would be an added benefit to being a vendor. Good for the vendor, good for the customer.

 

Thanks Again Stephen.

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