Bigger is better for this weekend’s National Postage Stamp Show

The largest postage stamp show in Toronto is coming to town this weekend, offering collectors a chance to visit scores of dealers from around the world while admiring a new stamp exhibit by the North Toronto Stamp Club (NTSC).

Sponsored by the Canadian Stamp Dealers’ Association (CSDA), the Spring 2015 National Postage Stamp Show is the first of the CSDA’s biannual national shows. It’s being held in Hall Four of Mississauga’s International Centre at 6900 Airport Rd between April 17 and 19.

“The shows we have in Toronto are the largest in the region,” said John Sheffield, a director with the CSDA. “It provides collectors an opportunity to meet with dealers they otherwise wouldn’t see at any of the local club shows in the Toronto area. I guess we subscribe to the philosophy that bigger is better.”

He said the association’s shows are the only time some of these dealers work the area.

“It’s an opportunity for collectors to see dealers they only have an opportunity to see twice a year, at our shows.”

The show begins with an early-bird bourse on Friday, April 17 between 10 and 11 a.m. Admission to the early-bird bourse costs $10; however, after 11 a.m. on Friday, admission is free for the remainder of the weekend. After opening at 10 a.m. each day, the bourse floor will run until 6 p.m. on Friday, 5 p.m. on Saturday and 3 p.m. on Sunday. 

One highlight will be the NTSC’s 72nd annual exhibit, said Sheffield.

“We partner with the NTSC to host their annual exhibit, so it gives those collectors a chance to show off what they’ve done and the collecting public a chance to take a peak at these collections, what’s being collected and how it’s being exhibited.”

The NTSC exhibit will feature the collections and materials of its various members.

“With the exception of the Royal [Philatelic Society of Canada] shows, whenever they happen to be held in Southern or Southwestern Ontario, there is nothing that compares,” said Sheffield.

The upcoming spring show is the second to be hosted at the International Centre after attendees voiced their opinions regarding the old venue in downtown Toronto.

“For 30 years, we had held our show down at Exhibition Place in downtown Toronto,” he said, adding that prices increased with each biannual show. “We’re listening to the people who attend the shows, and they said they couldn’t do it anymore. It simply cost too much, and the other events that were also going on at Exhibition Place that weekend attracted about 10,000 people, and they were all driving in there. Parking became ridiculous.”

He said the new location offers attendees public transportation to and from the venue, easy access to the venue if driving oneself, and free parking upon arrival.

“We listened to these comments, and the time was right to move the show.”

Sheffield said last year’s attendance reached new levels and expects more of the same this time around, adding that collectors will find a few new dealers at this year’s outing.

“Dealers who haven’t done our show before had heard good things about the number of people who showed up, so they wanted to come, join the association and run a table.”

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