WHAT MAKES A GOOD COIN CLUB?
I know coin clubs mean different things to different people. what one person wants from a club may not be of interest to another. that is why a coin club must be diverse in its activities, so everyone's interest are fulfilled. While a club is trying to fulfill the enjoyments of some of it members, it also must not turn other members to boredum. I believe this bordom is what makes clubs become "stale." So I am going to list some things I feel make a good coin club. Some of the items on the list might be weak points of one club, while they are strong points of another club; but all clubs have room for improvement.
First, a club must have an ACTIVE MEMBERSHIP---persons willing to share their knowledge with others. Club members also must be ready to volunteer; whether it is to serve on a committee, present a program at the club's meetings, or work at the club's annual show. Club's activities can not be done by just a handful of members, so step up and do something for your club.
GOOD LEADERS: This category is tied to an active membership. If you have an active club, you will have good officers. It you have a membership that does not care, it will show in the club's officers. Also, the club's officers must provide good leadership. Each officer must be prepared to give his/hers report at the meeting. The president should try to see that the business meeting runs as smoothly as possible.
EDUCATION: The main purpose of a coin club is to promote education in numismatics. Club's programs should touch on the different areas of numismatics, whether it is collecting U.S. coins, paper money, token, or investing. Another form of providing education is having a club newsletter. A club newsletter can range from providing the simplest information on what the club is doing, to printing research papers. Coin clubs can also provide exhibits in banks, libraries, and other places to educate the general public on numismatics.
COIN SHOW: You might be wondering why I included coin shows on the list. Coin shows are the largest revenue producer for clubs. Club coin show should not just be a place to buy and sell coins. A show gives the club members an opportunity to work on a project together. It can be the "numismatic social event" of the year. Club shows should, and are, for education exhibits. (Remember, providing education is the main purpose of a club.)
I read once, a show did not provide an area exhibits because the promoter said that each dealer was an exhibitor and the exhibit area took away from the financial profit of the show. Technically, maybe each dealer is an exhibitor, but not every dealer can tell you the history of a coin or why the coin exists. Some dealers do not care about the educational side of collecting; they wan to make a quick profit. Exhibits and programs presented at club shows might just spark the interest of someone from the general public to start collecting.
YOUNG NUMISMATISTS: For clubs to grow and survive for the future, they need young people to become collectors. Club can sponsor activities to get young people to become coin collectors and hopefully to stay collectors; but I feel the key to young numismatists is the parents. If parents do not become interested in what their children's interests are, or at least take the time to their children to club meetings, clubs sponsored activities for young numismatists are destined for failure.
This blog was taken from an article I wrote for the Central States Numismatic Society's "The Centinel" Volume 35, Number 3, Fall, 1987. I feel this still holds true today.