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Busy Weekend Planned For NAPEX

June 5-7 will be a busy weekend at NAPEX 2009, the Washington, D.C.-area World Series of Philately show.

NAPEX 2009 is being held at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner, 7920 Jones Branch Drive, McLean, Va.. Show hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. Admission and parking are free.

Rick Barrentine The booklet version of the new U.S. 44-cent flag stamp and United Nations personalized stamps will debut at the show on Friday. The photographer who took the picture for the flag stamp, Rick Barrentine (photo right), is among the guests scheduled at the U.S. first day of issue ceremony, which starts at 11 a.m. in the Martinique's area of the Hilton, adjacent to the lobby.

Barrentine said he didn't know that his 2003 photograph was the basis for the stamp design until he was called by May Day Taylor of NAPEX.

"I didn't know what she was talking about," Barrentine said, but added, "It almost kind of brought tears to my eyes because it's so exciting. It's a really cool thing."

Barrentine, creative director of the Quadras Integrated ad agency in Atlanta, will have a table at the show offering his own first day cover cachets for the stamp. In addition, some of his friends in the advertising industry are designing cachets, and FDCs for the Folded Flag booklet stamp by other cachetmakers will be on display.

The United Nations first day ceremony will start at 1:30 p.m. Friday. Photographs for these personalized stamps can be taken at the show, with the stamps delivered within a week after the show closes.

In addition to the United Nations Postal Administration and U.S. Postal Service, Nordica, which represents the postal agencies of Aland, Denmark, the Faroe Islands, Finland, Greenland, Iceland and Norway will have a booth at the show.

More than 70 dealers, from as far away as England and California, and about a dozen societies will have booths at NAPEX, and three of the societies the Ottoman and Near East Philatelic Society, The India Study Circle for Philately, and The Meter Stamp Society will hold their annual meetings during the show. Other societies and the National Postal Museum will hold regional meetings or present talks at NAPEX.

In addition to the commercial dealers bourse that runs all three days, NAPEX 2009 is also scheduling a cachetmakers bourse, where first day cover servicers can showcase and sell their own creations, for Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Alan Blair Auctions will conduct a public sale on Sunday, with viewing scheduled for Friday and Saturday. The offerings are particularly strong in United States stamps and covers, including FIVE covers from England to the United States prior to 1774, an unused No. 1, a used No. 1 with green cancel, postage dues, officials and newspaper stamps. The auction also includes Confederate lots, with about 70 covers; a huge collection of metered mail covers, many from Germany; and many lots of India and Switzerland.

NAPEX features both a philatelic exhibition (stamps and covers) and a literature competition. In addition, there will be a special group of one-frame exhibits called "The Alphabet Challenge" all based on the letter "L." The exhibits will be judged using standard American Philatelic Society rules.

The Alphabet Challenge exhibits "are not necessarily topical. They can be traditional, too, because there could be exhibits on, for instance, Libya," said show chairman Darrell Ertzberger. One of the topical exhibits is on laundry. "I think the exhibitor is using advertising covers from the turn of the century," Ertzberger added.

"This is the first year we've done this, and we hope it will start a tradition," he said. "We'll have another letter next year."

As a WSP show, the winner of the Grand Award of the stamp and cover exhibit competition at NAPEX 2009 will be part of the Champion of Champions competition at Stampshow 2009. The philatelic jury will be chaired by Peter P. McCann of Florida. The literature jury will be chaired by John Kevin Doyle of Illinois.

Speaking of judging, seminars on international exhibit judging will be offered at NAPEX 2009, the only North American show this year to offer these, as well as the new national judging seminars recommended by the APS. Attendance at these seminars will satisfy one of the requirements to begin judging apprenticeships at the international or national level.

NAPEX 2009 will include a large and well-staffed beginners area, called Important New Collectors, or INC.

"There will be games, stamps to sort and lots of smiles" in the INC area, says NAPEX's Taylor. "Look for the red balloons."

A Boy Scout merit badge workshop is also on the schedule for Saturday morning. Reservations are required, and can be made by contact Taylor at maydaytaylor@verizon.net or {301} 986-9066.

NAPEX 2009 is offering three different engraved cachets and a souvenir card celebrating the bicentennial of the birth of Abraham Lincoln, 16th president of the United States. The covers and card are available serviced or mint, either at the show or by mail. The serviced covers will use one of the 2009 Lincoln stamps and an earlier Lincoln stamp to make the 44-cent first-class rate, and one of the show's daily pictorial cancels.

Details on ordering the show covers, as well as directions to the show and all sorts of other information, can be found at www.NAPEX.org, via e-mail from mteton@aol.com or by mail from NAPEX 2009, P. O. Box 1312, Falls Church, VA 22041-1312.

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