Panini Doing It Right at the 2011 National

When you watch sporting events you always hear about that one dedicated player who does everything they can and works extra hard for their team. Announcers love to use the example how the player is always the first one on the court or field and the last one off.

Well from reports I’ve heard at the National, Panini has been just that this past week. From the time the doors opened on the first day, until after everyone else was packing up Sunday night, Panini was there for it’s customers and future customers delivering the goods they had prepared for the National. Wrapper redemptions, autographed memorabilia, and great displays available from beginning to the very end.

Panini even earned some kudos from of it’s toughest critics in the blogging community for the way they handled their corporate area at the 2011 National. At times, it seemed like Panini could do nothing right to them. But Panini’s work at the National even turned the biggest critics into fan boys, even if only for this one weekend.

From reports, the Panini booth was swamped all weekend long with people opening thousands of dollars worth of products to get their hands on some great wrapper redemptions and other offerings from Panini. And from what I’ve been told, Tracy Hackler and Scott Prusha, the marketing men over at Panini, handled it with zen like abilities.

For one weekend, no matter which brand of cards you preferred and no matter what your previous opinion was, everyone was a Panini fan.

Check out some live blog posts from Panini.

A Frenzied First Day at the National

Wrapper Redemptions Highlight Panini’s Thursday

Wrapper Madness on Day 2

Sights and Sounds from Day 3

A Wild Saturday at the National

If you didn’t get a chance to head out to the National, Panini saved some wrapper redemption packs just for you.

I will try and have complete coverage of the National and final thoughts about it from a guest in the coming days. But look out Baltimore in 2012, I’m saving up!


One Day I Will Attend the National

One day I will attend the National.

The meat and potatoes of the National in Chicago started today but I’ve been reading blog posts across the internet about companies and other bloggers going to the National. I first learned of the National in 2005ish when I first got back into card collecting and thought it would be amazing to go someday. Well, it’s 2011 and I still haven’t gone. But I am making it my personal goal to attend next year. I have a crappy job which pays crap and I have to start saving for my own wedding. But maybe I can pinch the pennies even more to be able to attend the National. Maybe I’ll start being one of those coupon addicts?

I mean, these blog posts and videos are just awesome. A ton of people, tons of beautiful cards, meet ups with people I’ve chatted with online for what seems like forever, and baseball games. I would probably go and not really buy much, but to me it’s more about the experience. I’d go visit the dealers and check out their beautiful cards and memorabilia, I’d stop by the social media groups and visit my friends at the various sports card forums I visit, and of courseĀ  stop by the manufacturer booths and chat it up with the likes of Tracy Hackler and Chris Carlin.

Afterwards, grab a drink with some people and start it all again the next day. I would feel like a kid in a carnival. Free swag, wrapper redemptions, historic memorabilia…what is there not to love? Even watching guys get arrested by the Postal Inspector police, those guys mean business.

It just seems like a great experience and a great time. I have a wedding fund, a blog fund, and I think it’s time to start a National fund so one day I will attend the National.

Anyone have some great National experiences to share with me?