Central Pennsylvania Card Shops

katester44

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As the summer winds down, wanted to give a shout out to a couple of card shops that we were able to visit during our travels for baseball tournaments in the area.

Sports Memorabilia 2K -- New Oxford, PA
Golden Eagle Comics -- Reading, PA
VSM Sports Card Outlet -- Lancaster, PA

SM2K is our "regular" LCS, as it is directly between us and Gettysburg, so we pass/visit quite frequently.

Golden Eagle and VSM were both great places to visit and extremely kid friendly.
 

Boots

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I checked this thread, and see not a lot of activity, and it got me to wondering about the role LCS' play in the hobby in this day and age. (I looked at starting a new thread on the topic, but cannot see that I'm able to do that.)
I know that locally there are only two LCS' I know of. One is mostly a place where you buy "wax boxes" (are they really 'wax' anymore?) and supplies, although there are a few (several dozen) loose cards available at any given time. The other is a more traditional LCS (although I must confess I have not been there in more than ten years). I have not been to the former in more than a year. The simple reason(s) for me not patronizing these shops are price and selection. My collection at this point is focused mostly on vintage (and some more current Topps inserts). It's tough for me to find cards I'm looking for in these LCS', and at prices that I can afford/are competitive. The "competition" is, obviously, what is on the internet, both in the sense of auction sites and trading sites.
So, I'm wondering how many Bench Members regularly buy from an LCS and what their experience is. Is mine an anomalay based on where I live, what I collect, other factors? Is there a moral imperative to buy from my LCS (even at a higher price than I can on the 'net) just to support these LCS', or are they just dinosaurs that are dying/dead?
Thanks for your thoughts.
Boots
 

mm1sub

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There is a great shop located in Oxford, MA. The guy who owns it has a ton of cards at great prices. Which is why it is usually full. He also does lay-away, gives kids cards for good grades and has a huge selection of packs from every sport. I think he kind of figures that if the kids show up then the parents will be there also. I have been going there for years and have picked up cards fro people on this site. But like you I think shops like this are few and far between.
 

katester44

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I checked this thread, and see not a lot of activity, and it got me to wondering about the role LCS' play in the hobby in this day and age. (I looked at starting a new thread on the topic, but cannot see that I'm able to do that.)
I know that locally there are only two LCS' I know of. One is mostly a place where you buy "wax boxes" (are they really 'wax' anymore?) and supplies, although there are a few (several dozen) loose cards available at any given time. The other is a more traditional LCS (although I must confess I have not been there in more than ten years). I have not been to the former in more than a year. The simple reason(s) for me not patronizing these shops are price and selection. My collection at this point is focused mostly on vintage (and some more current Topps inserts). It's tough for me to find cards I'm looking for in these LCS', and at prices that I can afford/are competitive. The "competition" is, obviously, what is on the internet, both in the sense of auction sites and trading sites.
So, I'm wondering how many Bench Members regularly buy from an LCS and what their experience is. Is mine an anomalay based on where I live, what I collect, other factors? Is there a moral imperative to buy from my LCS (even at a higher price than I can on the 'net) just to support these LCS', or are they just dinosaurs that are dying/dead?
Thanks for your thoughts.
Boots

I think it is a fair question - where do you get your cards and why?

LCS - higher prices/better conversation/chance to meet others in the hobby/overall selection may not be as good
Card Show - better selection/more variety than a single LCS/opportunity to get some great deals
Retailer (Target/Wal Mart) - ease of purchase - if they have what you want
Online (blowout/Ebay) - best possible variety/probably best pricing

Each of the selections has the negatives that go with the positives. I always try to find an LCS when we are traveling for baseball tournaments - nice way to kill some time when their are gaps between games. Unless you get to one of the REALLY nice card shows, it can be a wasted effort - especially if your goal is vintage, like mine is. Honestly, I probably spend the majority of my card budget at Target now, just grabbing blasters to open with my son. Online, I will do 4, maybe 5 times a year. Topps Series I. Topps Series II. Topps U/H. Allen & Ginter. Donruss Basketball/NBA Hoops.
 

Rhubarb_Runner

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I have a tremendous LCS near me (Baseball Plus - St. Peters, MO), and most of my business is done there. I enjoy talking with the owner (about most anything), and have at times been given cards to try trade (if they're traded, I buy them from him; if not, then they're returned).

That said, his shop is a cluttered mess (great fun if you want to do some digging) but I always love the stories from the regulars there. The owner is still in business because he also does online business, too.
 

metsman1986

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A friend of mine owns a LCS here in Memphis......He started out with cards, comics, and supplies.......At one time, early 1990's, he had four stores in the area........About eight years ago, he had to diversify and go with team logo merchandise; shirts, hats, jackets, even house shoes......He still has an account with Topps and still sells a pretty good amount of cards but relies on the other stuff to make $$.......There is a card show here that is pretty good too.........They do it every other month so it doesn't get old.........They draw people from KY, MS, AR, and TN..........
 

katester44

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I have a tremendous LCS near me (Baseball Plus - St. Peters, MO), and most of my business is done there. I enjoy talking with the owner (about most anything), and have at times been given cards to try trade (if they're traded, I buy them from him; if not, then they're returned).

That said, his shop is a cluttered mess (great fun if you want to do some digging) but I always love the stories from the regulars there. The owner is still in business because he also does online business, too.

A friend of mine owns a LCS here in Memphis......He started out with cards, comics, and supplies.......At one time, early 1990's, he had four stores in the area........About eight years ago, he had to diversify and go with team logo merchandise; shirts, hats, jackets, even house shoes......He still has an account with Topps and still sells a pretty good amount of cards but relies on the other stuff to make $$.......There is a card show here that is pretty good too.........They do it every other month so it doesn't get old.........They draw people from KY, MS, AR, and TN..........

Very jealous of folks that have the nice LCS in the neighborhood. While I enjoy the cards, sometimes it is the conversation that makes it more valuable (sort of like a good barbershop)!

The closest, really good show we have is the Philly Show in King of Prussia a couple times a year. It is a 90 minute drive (give or take), but definitely worth it. Next time I am headed back to Memphis, will reach out and get details on your LCS!
 

teammaddux

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We have Card Stadium in Harrisburg...reasonable prices but the owner is not very personable. His brother, when he is there, is much nicer.
 

Gnep31

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Does Topps still have a list of card shops on their website? Is there another good place to find a list of shops?

Katester - Do you happen to know of some good shops on the Western side of PA? My business travels take me there once or twice a month.
 

katester44

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Does Topps still have a list of card shops on their website? Is there another good place to find a list of shops?

Katester - Do you happen to know of some good shops on the Western side of PA? My business travels take me there once or twice a month.

The last time I looked, Topps does have a list of shops, but I can't guarantee if any of them are still in existence. Unfortunately, can't help you on the west side of the state in terms of card shops. Last time I was in Pittsburgh was 2 summers ago for a baseball game and primanti sandwiches.
 

Gnep31

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I hit two shops this week during my travels. One near Cleveland and the other in Columbus. Both were nice shops, but both had issues.

The shop in the Cleveland area - the owner was not there and the employee watching the shop didn't know much about cards. Made it hard to talk about prices on the cards I was buying. I also had some cards to sell so that did not happen. I purchased some cards for my sets and also a blaster of Bowman 2020. All the cards/box were placed in a bag. When I got to my hotel room I noticed a straight cut the length of the box. The correct number of packs were inside, but someone had obviously searched the box. The plastic was still on the box, but a very nice straight cut on the seem so that the cardboard could be pushed in and the packs removed/replaced. I am still kicking myself for not checking the box before leaving the shop.....lesson learned.

The shop in Columbus was nice as well, but they did not have a good selection of baseball cards nor were they buying any.
 

katester44

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We have Card Stadium in Harrisburg...reasonable prices but the owner is not very personable. His brother, when he is there, is much nicer.

Will have to take a look at Card Stadium -- are they open to the public at this point?

apparently the place in new oxford is no longer open.

I wish I could say I was surprised -- the last handful of times I was in there, the owner wasn't there, it was either his wife or one of his kids. None of whom had any knowledge on cards/pricing, etc. Probably went all online and saved the rent.
 

teammaddux

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Will have to take a look at Card Stadium -- are they open to the public at this point?



I wish I could say I was surprised -- the last handful of times I was in there, the owner wasn't there, it was either his wife or one of his kids. None of whom had any knowledge on cards/pricing, etc. Probably went all online and saved the rent.

Yes, Card Stadium is open to the public...mon-fri 11-7, sat 10-3
 

katester44

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No clue if I can find the link - but Card Stadium was featured on the local news here last weekend. Talked about the fun and investment potential, etc. etc.

no wonder we can't find retail blasters - card collecting is full on fun for EVERYONE!!!!
 

teammaddux

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No clue if I can find the link - but Card Stadium was featured on the local news here last weekend. Talked about the fun and investment potential, etc. etc.

no wonder we can't find retail blasters - card collecting is full on fun for EVERYONE!!!!

Card Stadium is reasonably priced, but the price of his newer stuff has gone up a lot...if you need supplies however, as long as he has them in stock, are cheaper than anywhere else.
 

katester44

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Card Stadium is reasonably priced, but the price of his newer stuff has gone up a lot...if you need supplies however, as long as he has them in stock, are cheaper than anywhere else.


That is good to know - supplies (especially monster boxes) tend to be the toughest thing to find, other than bulk orders online. As for prices going up on newer stuff - that is everywhere....
 

teammaddux

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I think I pay like 3-3.50 for monster boxes there...he generally has a ton of cardboard supplies...plastic is iffy from time to time. He's got his connections apparently.
 
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