‘Overwhelming’ response to Ottawa RCNA Convention

By Jesse Robitaille

This story was printed on July 21, the second day of the 2022 RCNA Convention. The next issue of CCN (Vol. 60 #11) will feature a full show review plus other convention content.

Large crowds of collectors poured into the nation’s capital this July for the first in-person convention of the Royal Canadian Numismatic Association (RCNA) since 2019.

Despite an ongoing pandemic, economic inflation and widespread travel woes, the response from RCNA members to this year’s convention has been “overwhelming,” according to RCNA President Steve Woodland, who also chaired the event’s organizing committee. The five-day show drew nearly 150 registrants – “more than any recent convention,” Woodland said – and they came from most corners of Canada and parts of the United States. It comes after a cancelled convention in 2020 and a condensed, online-only event last year.

“The attendees I’ve spoken with have been delighted with the convention,” Woodland told CCN on July 20, the show’s opening day. “People are really excited to get back together for the first time in three years and see all their friends and associate collectors to talk and trade. The hotel lobby has been filled with people meeting old friends, and we just had 45 people at an early-bird dinner, which is more than we’ve ever had.”

By noon on that day, Woodland already had a pocket full of wooden tokens from show-goers – a common symbol of fellowship from like-minded collectors.

“That’s what the hobby is all about: the real purpose of the convention is to get together and see all your collecting buddies,” he added. “The hobby is healthy, and the camaraderie among the people is absolutely outstanding. The interpersonal face-to-face contact – that’s what draws people to the hobby. Coins and money are an excuse to get together, but it’s not the end; the real end is the friendships.”

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