John Reichley is the coordinator of the 9th of the Annual Collector's'Day Military Display Show, which is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Heritage Center. The event is open to the public with free admission.
1. The 9th Annual Collector's Day Military Display Show will be held in Leavenworth. Usually this event is held somewhere in Kansas City, how did it end up here this year?
The first eight annual Collector Shows were co-sponsored by the Kansas City Military Collectors Club and the National WW I Museum in Kansas City. The 8th annual was in March 2012, and following the museum CEO's resignation, the acting CEO sent the club coordinator an email in August saying, excerpted, "Thank you for your presence on March 3, 2012, at the museum for the 8th annual Military Collectors Fair. We have heard much positive feedback (from several sources).
The Museum is in a period of transition and can no longer host the fair going forward. We appreciate the work and support of the club, and the personal involvement of many of its members." A letter from the club coordinator to the museum coordinator in December offering that the club defray all expenses, thus costing the museum nothing for a show in 2013, went unanswered. Club members wanted to have annual meeting #9 somewhere, and when it was offered it to the Heritage Center, the answer was yes. A date was set, and off we go.
2. How many collectors do you expect to show up with collections, and will items be for sale or just display?
The club has some 60 members from the greater Kansas City area, Topeka, Lawrence, St. Joseph, and Leavenworth. Members will fill 40 tables with military artifacts from their private collections, but it is a display show only, with nothing for sale. Visitors are invited to come, look, ask, and learn, but they can't buy anything.
3. What are some of the more unique items that might be on display during the event?
Club members have requested tables based on themes only, so we don't know exactly what artifacts will be shown. Some themes are ancient warfare from Greek and Roman times; native weapons from Africa and Latin America; pistols, rifles, and crew served weapons; flight helmets; several tables of WW I and WW II items; swords; ammunition boxes; and soldier shaving gear. Plus other categories I'm sure.
4. If some readers out there have some old military collector's items, can they bring them down to the show and have them looked at or assessed by some of the other collectors?
This is a display show, intended to introduce visitors to military artifacts of the past, not a mini- "Antiques Roadshow" to appraise artifacts. Club members are collectors, not appraisers. If a visitor brings an item for appraisal, club members present will give it their best shot, but that is not the purpose of the show. It is a place for the public to see, appreciate, and learn from our military heritage.
Page 2 of 2 - 5. This event is free to the public. Besides a chance to see some interesting military collections, why is this good opportunity for local folks?
Some area folks have gone to the show the past eight years at the WW I museum, but not many. Having the show in Leavenworth, one of the most historic military places in America, will allow folks to enjoy our military heritage here.
But if local folks don't go see it, the club will seek another location for annual show #10.
If folks want it here next year, lots of them need to go see it. Club members hope many do.
— Dale Brendel