Beer can collectors to gather here

Published 2:43 am Friday, April 25, 2003

By By BEN RAYMOND LODE / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- A Niles chapter of the Beer Can Collectors of America will soon be the center of attention for Midwest beer can and breweriana collectors when they host their annual trade show May 3 in Niles.
The Goebel Gang of Niles will host their 27th annual beer and breweriana trade show Saturday, May 3, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the American Legion Post 26 on 1707 Miller Drive in Niles.
A Goebel Gang representative said this year's trade show is a bit more special than it has been before because St. Louis- based Alan Paschedag, National President of the Beer Can Collectors of America, will be there.
Brown said the president tries to attend as many shows as possible, showing that the national BCCA is willing to help local chapters.
During the trade show visitors will trade, buy and sell beer cans, beer signs and other beer related items, some of which date as far back as the mid-30s.
Roughly 60 to 70 eight-foot tables will be packed with beer related items at the annual show, Brown said.
Brown, himself a long-time beer can and breweriana collector who mainly collects Pabst items, said they are trying to get more people involved in collecting beer cans and beer related items.
That is also one of the reasons the gang seeks some pre-event publicity.
Brown mentioned a story on a beer can collector from Elkhart, Ind., that was distributed by the Associated Press.
So what makes people collect beer cans and breweriana, one might ask.
His wife, Debbie, said collectors sometimes get surveyor maps, old county maps and locate dumps where they go to find old, or newer, beer related collectable items.
Brown himself used to visit antique stores and markets in the past, but said lately there has been little to find at those places.
Even on eBay, the online auction Web-site, it can take months between each time he finds something he needs for his collection, he said.
Although he stopped collecting for a while due to other commitments, he got back into it 14 years ago.
But since getting back into it in 1989, there has been no way back, clearly indicated by his beer can and breweriana collection at home.
The BCCA is a worldwide organization. It has 4,000 members and 120 chapters worldwide.
The organization distributes a bi-monthly magazine called "Beer Cans and Brewery Collectibles.
Those interested in more information about this year's trade show, or just interested in finding out more about the Goebel Gang can call James Brown on 684-2748.