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2018 La Pen Show


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#1 Mags

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Posted 02 November 2017 - 13:16

Hello, hoping to attend a west coast event after I have visited DC three times. If any one has 2018 details, tips, hints please post below. I have a few details but trying to get a better appreciation of the show and then making some bookings likely in a few weeks. Let me know....thanks,

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#2 FarmBoy

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Posted 02 November 2017 - 13:27

Hello, hoping to attend a west coast event after I have visited DC three times. If any one has 2018 details, tips, hints please post below. I have a few details but trying to get a better appreciation of the show and then making some bookings likely in a few weeks. Let me know....thanks,
Mags

Have you considered the San Francisco Show?
San Francisco International Pen Show - They have dates! August 23-24-25, 2019 AND August 28-29-30, 2020. Book your travel and tables now! My PM box is usually full. Just email me: my last name at the google mail address.

#3 Mulrich

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 03:30

Have you considered the San Francisco Show?


Can you share a little about how the shows differ? I'd love to attend a show but I'll be lucky if I can carve out time to attend even one. West coast shows are easiest geographically but I'm not sure which show is best.

Pen shows aside, I'd much rather visit SF than LA.

#4 Greenie

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 18:45

SF is "the fun pen show"!  Well run, great ink testing stations that I enjoyed even though I am not an "ink guy". The auction was entertaining.  Nice social event Saturday night.

 

LA is large, and a good show as well. It is President's Day weekend, and Sunday is a bit of a zoo. Attend Thursday to Saturday.

 

Both are easy access from the airport, and neither is particularly close to the highlights of the cities they are named for... You go for the show and not the city.

 

If you are craving a pen show - LA is February, and sadly we have to wait until August for the SF show to come around.



#5 JonSzanto

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 04:39

The LA Show went through a change in the administration a couple years ago and it hasn't been the same since. Yes, it is a big show (still, but for how long?) and if you can put up with the BS it might be worth it. OTOH, the trader pass (needed for any attendance before Sunday) is egregiously pricey, and the venue/hotel is going to be doing a major renovation starting the first of the year, so it's anyone's guess what the facilities will be like. The hotel rate is also high, especially for the quality of the hotel. Other plusses are very close walks to food, but who wastes money on food when they could buy pens?

 

Conversely, the SF Show has been transformed into a very modern show, with a good venue, plenty of both new and vintage wares and lots of activities. They survived a lobby renovation this last August and still managed good business. Definitely the more social of the two shows.

Am I biased? Yes, I really like the SF show and will continue going every year I can. Compare the fact that I drive there from San Diego, usually clocking in at around 8 hours; the LA show is about 2 hours away, and this year I'm considering not even going, that is how discouraging it has become (but, hey, penssss, so I'll probably go at least one day).

SF. Do it.


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#6 pepsiplease69

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Posted 26 November 2017 - 18:26

I was pretty frustrated with the SF show this year.

Probably not going to attend in 2018.

#7 JonSzanto

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Posted 26 November 2017 - 18:36

I was pretty frustrated with the SF show this year.

 

 

Care to elaborate? I don't know of a show that is more interested in making itself better than this one, and feedback is an important part. If it was more than just your expectations not met, it could be good info for others to know about.


"When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick; and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."
~ Benjamin Franklin

#8 pepsiplease69

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Posted 26 November 2017 - 23:44

I prefer not to complain on a public forum.

I can PM you to share my experience if youre interested to hear it.

#9 JonSzanto

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Posted 27 November 2017 - 00:53

I prefer not to complain on a public forum.

I can PM you to share my experience if youre interested to hear it.

 

I understand and I'll just leave it up to you. My only reason for asking is to offer these issues in dialogue with the organizers, who happen to be my friends. I don't have any need for gossip, etc, just a desire to help make things better. PM me if you are ok with this, I'll understand if not. Thanks!


"When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick; and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."
~ Benjamin Franklin

#10 888007888

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 19:18

I'm still looking forward to the 2018 LA show. It's about the people and pens. All the other issues are not insurmountable. I go to the shows because they are great places to gather with other enthusiasts.

#11 ErrantSmudge

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Posted 23 December 2017 - 20:44

I live in San Francisco and I've already bought my plane ticket for the 2018 LA Show.  I really enjoyed my 2017 experience, even going on the Sunday which everyone says is too crowded.  The number of booths, especially vendor booths like Anderson, Vanness, Peyton Street Pens, Bittner, Yafa, Aurora, Sailor, Eversharp, etc etc was very impressive, as were the booths for individual mom-an-pop dealers and collectors.

 

I didn't make the 2017 SF Pen Show (other commitments) so I don't have a basis for comparison, but I do think LA is worth the trip.


Edited by ErrantSmudge, 23 December 2017 - 20:45.


#12 Bookman

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Posted 24 December 2017 - 16:27

I grew up in L.A.  In fact I grew up in Redondo Beach, right next door to Manhattan Beach where the pen show takes place.  I used to travel to L.A. frequently on business but never found the time to gallivant, revisit familiar places, play tourist.  But I used the 2016 show as a hook to do so, and I plan to do it again in February.  I love fountain pens and enjoy pen shows.  But whether the L.A. Pen Show outshines the S.F., which I doubt, won't affect my enjoyment of the trip south.


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#13 FarmBoy

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Posted 24 December 2017 - 17:11

I usually attend both. I recommend the both approach.
San Francisco International Pen Show - They have dates! August 23-24-25, 2019 AND August 28-29-30, 2020. Book your travel and tables now! My PM box is usually full. Just email me: my last name at the google mail address.

#14 Jaybeez

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Posted 27 December 2017 - 01:31

The LA Show went through a change in the administration a couple years ago and it hasn't been the same since. Yes, it is a big show (still, but for how long?) and if you can put up with the BS it might be worth it. OTOH, the trader pass (needed for any attendance before Sunday) is egregiously pricey, and the venue/hotel is going to be doing a major renovation starting the first of the year, so it's anyone's guess what the facilities will be like. The hotel rate is also high, especially for the quality of the hotel. Other plusses are very close walks to food, but who wastes money on food when they could buy pens?

 

Conversely, the SF Show has been transformed into a very modern show, with a good venue, plenty of both new and vintage wares and lots of activities. They survived a lobby renovation this last August and still managed good business. Definitely the more social of the two shows.

Am I biased? Yes, I really like the SF show and will continue going every year I can. Compare the fact that I drive there from San Diego, usually clocking in at around 8 hours; the LA show is about 2 hours away, and this year I'm considering not even going, that is how discouraging it has become (but, hey, penssss, so I'll probably go at least one day).

SF. Do it.

 

 

Is Sunday insanely crowded? Recently re-kindled my FP passion and my son is now into it, so a potential Father / Son outing. We braved NAMM last year, so thinking this show should be no worse. 



#15 JonSzanto

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Posted 27 December 2017 - 06:44

Is Sunday insanely crowded? Recently re-kindled my FP passion and my son is now into it, so a potential Father / Son outing. We braved NAMM last year, so thinking this show should be no worse. 

 

 Oh, I think for that particular situation it will be fine - maybe even more so for your son than the slightly more sedate other days. Plus there are vendors on Sunday that have more current and popular pen stuff, more affordable too, I believe. Just be aware that it does get crowded.

As an aside, I was revisiting the pen show's website and they mention that (due to the renovations) the show is limited to one large room. There are no details given, save for that table assignments/placement will be all different, so this year may very well be unlike anything previous. Admission isn't high on Sunday and it could be a great father/son adventure. Go!


"When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick; and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."
~ Benjamin Franklin

#16 Jaybeez

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Posted 27 December 2017 - 15:31

Thanks for the info, will plan on it!

#17 ErrantSmudge

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Posted 28 December 2017 - 17:16

I've only been once, to the 2017 event.  It did get crowded, but it wasn't so crowded I was boxed in and had to push in between people.  I was able to visit any booth I wanted, view the wares, and talk to the proprietors without major issues.


Edited by ErrantSmudge, 28 December 2017 - 17:17.


#18 ErrantSmudge

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Posted 28 December 2017 - 17:22

As an aside, I was revisiting the pen show's website and they mention that (due to the renovations) the show is limited to one large room. 

 

Is this new setting really "limited"?  I just checked the show's website, and I got a very different impression.  It says this (direct quote from website):

 

The newly renovated hotel is beautiful and will offer a new meeting space for the show.  NOTE THAT BECAUSE WE WILL BE IN A SINGLE, LARGE ROOM, THE TABLE LAYOUT IS CHANGING COMPLETELY.

 

 

By "newly renovated" I take this to mean the hotel renovation is complete.  And "new meeting space" could be as big or bigger than the total space (room plus hallways) of previous shows.


Edited by ErrantSmudge, 28 December 2017 - 17:24.


#19 JonSzanto

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Posted 28 December 2017 - 17:26

By "newly renovated" I take this to mean the hotel renovation is complete.  And "new meeting space" could be as big or bigger than the total space (room plus hallways) of previous shows.

 

There certainly is that possibility, but it is a renovation and not a rebuilding of the building. In years past they utilized the largest space PLUS two outside aisles for full shows. Of course, nothing would please me more than a much more ginormous layout, but having been in the venue a few years now I'm... curious.


"When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick; and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."
~ Benjamin Franklin

#20 AltecGreen

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Posted 28 December 2017 - 19:29

 

Is this new setting really "limited"?  I just checked the show's website, and I got a very different impression.  It says this (direct quote from website):

 

 

By "newly renovated" I take this to mean the hotel renovation is complete.  And "new meeting space" could be as big or bigger than the total space (room plus hallways) of previous shows.

 

 

The new space is bigger than the old ballroom but smaller than the old ballroom plus the outside area.  The old ballroom is still there but the show will not be using it.  The downstairs area was completely redone and there is a new ballroom downstairs.  The show will use the new space downstairs by the pool.  The old staircase down from the lobby level to the pool has been removed and filled up creating a much bigger space upstairs and allowing for the new ballroom downstairs.  The organizer has already said that he has fewer tables than the year before.  The hotel renovation was originally scheduled to be completed in January so there's still some work to be done. 


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223 Twin Dolphin Drive
Redwood City Ca, 94065







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