The 19th annual Ohio Pen Show was held at the Crowne Plaza Dublin Hotel in Columbus, Ohio over 4 days, from November 8 – 11, 2013. The first day was open to exhibitors and weekend registrants only while the remaining three were open to the public. Three members of our club hopped in a van and headed off to the show – two of whom had been before and one rookie. We departed from London early in the morning of November 8 and stopped for breakfast shortly after crossing the Ambassador Bridge into Detroit. This meant that we arrived at the hotel in Dublin around mid-day – just in time for us to take full advantage of our weekend passes!
The exhibitor list was a veritable who’s who of the pen world ! And while it may not be the size of the Washington Supershow, the Ohio Show is large by any standards with the dealers filling up the hotel’s grand ballroom, two large meeting rooms that were adjacent to the ballroom and the hallways just outside these rooms.
For me, the first-timer at the Ohio Show, I certainly enjoyed having the chance to see so many pens and all that goes with them; however, the best part was having the opportunity to meet people that I have dealt with by email and being introduced to so many others that my cohorts knew. The atmosphere was informal and there was time to socialize or talk pens and take advantage of the vast knowledge and experience of the dealers (especially on Thursday and Friday). I left the show with 2 pens – an Aurora Optima in green auroloide with a medium italic nib, a Big Red with an unbelievable stub nib (~1 mm), 3 bottles of ink – Sailor Epinarde (green to go with the Optima), Franklin-Christoph Blue 72 and Organics Studio First Edition Manganese, 1 pen resurrected from the dead – a Conway Stewart 770 with a crack near the lever box(a shout out to Sherrell Tyree on the ink-pen.com for performing this miracle – I have sent notice to the Vatican that Sherrell should be considered for sainthood!) , 3 or 4 nibs ground to my liking, some paper and the biggest smile on my face since I was a kid that I will remember for some time.
At the show, I spent a fair amount of time at the Franklin-Christoph table talking to Jim and looking at their pens and other pen stuff on offer. I was so impressed by the quality and the writing experience of these pens that I almost bought one. I held off because I had already purchased two other pens. After the show, I could not stop thinking about a prototype Model 19 – “1901” with dark green bands that I had fallen for. A week or so after the show, I gave in and ordered the pen (fortunately it was still available); however, my wife intercepted its delivery and wrapped it up as one of my Christmas gifts – making me wait even longer!!
And finally a few random pictures taken at various times …