Southgate's correspondent, Somer discusses the San Francisco ANA Show in July, and all the perks of being a member of a prestigious organization such as the ANA.

A VIP at the ANA

By Somer Athari

I found a pretty big surprise this week, after opening up the April issue of the Numismatist. I found my name at the top of the list of the new members of the American Numismatic Association (ANA) in the state of Nevada. In first noticing this, I was under the impression that the ANA must have known about my Snippets column and considered me a VIP, but upon closer examination, all of the names were just in alphabetical order. (Boo hoo!) The other girls of Southgate Coins are now new members as well. This means that we are probably some of the youngest members of the ANA currently (other than Junior members, of course). In 50 or so years, we could really be VIP'S in the ANA if we keep up our interests in coins, which at this point in time, seems to be a given.

I have never really been a part of such a prestigious organization before. Well, maybe my bank, but I don't really consider that a happy relationship all the time. But having my own membership card for such an important institution as the American Numismatic Association, which has been around since 1891, I feel privileged.

There are so many benefits that come with being a member. For one, I will get a copy of the monthly Numismatistmagazine, so I can better answer more difficult questions that customers may have about coins. One article appearing in the current edition reported on the trendy Wisconsin statehood quarters with the supposed die "errors." We have made copies of this article, with the pictures, to better assist our curious customers. I know that Rusty uses his membership to utilize another one of the key privileges, the reference materials from their extensive library. And I guess that this means I could use reference materials for my world famous articles too, right?

Either way, I am honored to have such a great membership, but not because I have a card with my name on it (other than my credit card) or for the monthly magazine, but because of all the exciting experiences I and the other girls from Southgate Coins will have while at the ANA coin show this July in San Francisco. A membership is one of the requirements for us to work behind our company's booth at ANA conventions and I am pretty sure that we get our own name tags too. I always enjoy people looking at my name and trying to pronounce it correctly; and I know plenty of them will take a stab at it as they pass by our very own booth at the coin show, which is always the best booth around (in my humble opinion). I mean who else has as many rare coins in one small location? And how about young college girls and a nice lady like Marie working at a coin show for that matter?

Visitors at the coin shows can always spot our booth first because of the brilliantly blue aprons us girls wear and our eye-catching red, white, and blue sign. (Oh, and don't forget about the large selection of Carson City coins.)

What else could I possibly be looking forward to on our trip to the San Francisco ANA show, you may ask? Well how about a full stomach; My fellow team members at Southgate and I are happiest when our stomachs are full. And it just so happened that a good customer of ours tipped us off to a great seafood restaurant in San Francisco, so after the show, we are all going out to one of our typical after-show dinners. (YEAH, halibut is my personal favorite!) After five days at the coin show, the nice San Francisco atmosphere, beautiful hotel, and fine dinning, we get to come home to Reno in the middle of the hot summer and back to school. Well, it will be fun while it lasts!

If I could do all of that every year at an ANA summer coin convention, I would for sure be a member until my 50-year anniversary with the organization. Since we have become members at such a young age, Rusty and Marie have informed us that we will have the opportunity to earn our 50-year pins if we continue to renew our memberships.

You could all come along and join in the tradition too. Plan on visiting San Francisco at the end of July and if nothing else, stop by our booth and say hi. Like I said, we are pretty easy to spot. Just look for 4 lovely ladies, smiling, in blue aprons and of course the most "CC" coins you've ever seen in one place (besides here in the store). And you can't forget, Rusty will be there too, of course. Without him, none of this would be happening.

Till next week!

Your VIP Correspondent,