The Olympic Center in Lake Placid, New York.
by Craig Perlow (USA)
For only the second time since the IOC created and organized this event in the 1990s in Lausanne, Switzerland, the 21st World Olympic Collectors Fair (WOCF) was held in the United States – in Lake Placid, NY – from 11 through 13 September 2015. The venue was the historic 1932 Jack Shea Rink at the Olympic Center where 62 collectors from 16 countries reserved 86 eight-foot tables on which to display their Olympic items. Everything from one-dollar pins to medals selling for tens of thousands of dollars were available and buying, selling, and trading activity was brisk amongst the hundreds who attended the Fair during its three-day run. The following countries were represented: BRA, CAN, CHN, FRA, GRE, JAP, LAT, LIT, NOR, RUS, SVK, SWE, SWI, TUR, UKR, and of course, the USA.
The venue for the 21st World Olympic Collectors Fair was made all-the-more special by its proximity within the Olympic Center to the 1980 Olympic Rink — now known as the “Herb Brooks Arena” — where the “Miracle on Ice” occurred on 22 February 1980. It was there that a young group of mostly-collegiate ice hockey players from the USA defeated the mighty Soviet Union 4-3 in a semi-final game, then went on to win the gold medal with a 4-2 victory over Finland in the final. Needless to say, many of the Fair attendees made the short walk to this historic arena which is still in use today.