Promoter hits on idea for card show at Cougars' stadium

Updated 4/13/2013 5:05 PM
  • Dan Campana, a local journalist, is promoting the Take Me Out To The Card Show sports card and memorabilia show on Saturday, April 27, in Geneva.

    Dan Campana, a local journalist, is promoting the Take Me Out To The Card Show sports card and memorabilia show on Saturday, April 27, in Geneva. Daily Herald File Photo, 2012

It was one of the more devastating things a youngster can endure. At about age 11, I lost my baseball card collection to a flood in our basement.

I never did "regroup" from that loss and start a massive collection again. But the interest in browsing around card shows and picking up an occasional card from my past has never left.

That's why the Take Me Out To The Card Show sports card and memorabilia show -- from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, April 27, at Fifth Third Bank Ballpark -- immediately caught my attention.

Dan Campana, the show's promoter and a longtime collector, is making his first venture as the guy "doing the heavy lifting" by putting together a sports card show. He feels he has hit on a perfect combination.

As a local journalist, Campana had built a good relationship with the Kane County Cougars and approached them with the concept of having a card show at a ballpark.

"I always wanted to try (to promote a show) and this was a good place to start because I had support from the Cougars and the card dealers," Campana said.

"I thought it was a unique idea, because most shows are at hotels or convention centers," Campana added. "I laid the groundwork for this idea, and the Cougars agreed it would fit in with the use of their suites at the ballpark."

Nearly 20 tables with dealer displays will fill the ballpark's main suite, and others will be used for dealers with larger displays or rooms for attendees to get autographs from sports celebrities such as Denis Savard, who played for the Blackhawks, and former Cubs player, Randy Hundley.

"I collected cards when I was younger, then gave it up when I went to college," Campana said.

The hobby stayed on the sidelines until after Campana was married and had a son. As his son got older and became interested in sports cards, Campana picked up his hobby again.

Now it's just a matter of drawing some attention to the show and to the Cougars' beautiful ballpark.

"It's going to help (the show) that this is the first year the Cougars are affiliated with the Cubs, because fans who have never been there may be interested in coming to the park," Campana said. "This would be a good way for them to see what it is like."

For the daughters: Jay Payleitner sent me his latest book, proving once again that this St. Charles author and freelance Christian radio producer is devoted to helping families strengthen their relationships.

This book, "52 Things Daughters Need From Their Dads," won't help me much, because I don't have any daughters. But those who do would benefit by giving this book a look-see.

Here's a teaser on what's in the book. Each "need" represents a chapter, and one is titled, "To Referee Between the Two Most Important Women in Your Life." Even without daughters, anyone who has read other books or watched TV shows and movies has been exposed to classic clashes between moms and daughters.

And here's another chapter: "To Be Ready for Anything in Middle School."

Where's the coffee?: It seems we've had coffee shops come and go around here the last few years at the same clip as any other struggling retail enterprise. But with Caribou Coffee indicating the Batavia location will close Sunday, and Geneva's will become a different brand, it will leave coffee drinkers scurrying about for favorite locations.

I was surprised when the Caribou Coffee on the east side of St. Charles closed about five years ago. It seemed crowded to me, but that doesn't always figure into a chain operation's business decisions.

Proper setting: Outgoing St. Charles Mayor Don DeWitte was a major supporter of the Arcada Theatre through its various ups and downs the past two decades, and he's certainly attended his fair share of shows since owner Ron Onesti revived the place.

And who knows how many times DeWitte sat in the Arcada as a kid watching Saturday matinees.

Thus, it seems fitting that the historic theater will host a celebration to honor DeWitte's years of service to the city at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday.

For details, call Tina Nilles at (630) 377-4422.

Renovated and ready: The place recently underwent renovations and the owners even had a ribbon-cutting ceremony to show it off, so some may have assumed that Tap House Grill on the west side of St. Charles was a new and exciting restaurant and bar.

Regardless, some readers are telling me they have recently had good food at Tap House that has been at 341 W. Main St. for about six years.

The fact that it has more than 40 beers on tap doesn't hurt its reputation, not to mention it also has plenty of TVs showing off the day's important sports action.

I tried the food at Tap House when it first came into the area and it was quite good, but it sounds like a return trip should be on my docket to check out the recently completed renovations.

A long season: Bowling league seasons seem to last forever, but I found another recreational activity that carries on just about as long.

With my wife being a fitness instructor for the Batavia Park District, I was convinced to try Nordic walking about four years ago. I've been on the area's various trails every spring, summer and fall since.

We're at it again, the start of a seven-month season of walking with the Nordic poles. Yes, for most Saturday morning sessions I am the only male participating, but others have joined the fray in the past. It's an easy and effective exercise that burns more calories than regular walking, mainly because you are using your arms more effectively.

And I don't mind chatting with the women about life in the work world, the latest movies, "American Idol" and "Dancing With The Stars."

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