Saturday, January 8, 2011

Hey, Whiskey Collectors. How About A Legal Swap Meet At The Bourbon Festival?

This is just an idea now, but if enough people get behind it, it could become a reality.

I first suggested it here back in August, as a way to improve the Kentucky Bourbon Festival. "Attract Collectors. Get a law passed allowing whiskey collectors (legal age only, of course) to have a legal and above board swap meet" at the Festival.

It might work like this:

Let's say it's in a hall somewhere in Bardstown, a big room. Exhibitors have to register in advance but the only requirement is that they be of legal age. Collectors who want to exhibit pay a fee to do so. People who want to attend but don't want to exhibit buy a ticket. There probably will need to be a limit placed on how many bottles a non-exhibitor may carry in. Again, the only requirement is that everyone must be of legal age and IDs will be checked. All transactions will be private, between the participants. Transactions can take the form or either trades or sales. It lasts for maybe three hours on Saturday afternoon. And it's all legal.

The Kentucky Bourbon Festival is held each September in Bardstown, Kentucky.

Subsequent to that post I briefly discussed the idea with Eric Gregory, President of the Kentucky Distillers Association. He seemed to like it. The Festival, which KDA co-sponsors, would have to figure out how to do it legally, which might require some new legislation, so KDA is the outfit to work on that. Mr. Gregory seemed to think it was not completely outside the realm of possibility.

Mr. Gregory, by the way, is staff, but the KDA changes its board leadership every year. The new chairman for 2011 is John Rhea of Four Roses Distillery, the vice chairman is Jeff Conder of Beam Global, and the Secretary-Treasurer is Tom Krekeler of Campari (Wild Turkey). The other board members are Chris Morris (Brown-Forman), Andrea Wilson (Diageo) and David Hobbs (Heaven Hill). The board consists of one representative from each major company.

If you think this is a good idea, let the KDA know.

I would also encourage anyone who thinks it's a good idea to help flesh it out here with comments to this post. How might it be done? What would get you to participate?


John Hansell said...

Great idea Chuck. That would be fun.

T Comp said...

A fantastic idea that would be a win-win situation for both aficionados and the Bourbon Festival. I believe many of us would love to do some selling or collecting in a legitimate and transparent way.

Greg said...

As you know, the trading and selling of collection items already transpires on a daily basis. This would simply be a natural extension. I would also view this as an exhibit of bourbon history with the added benefit of maybe taking something home. I like the idea and hope is gets traction.

Paul said...

What if it was at WhiskyFest instead? Maybe John & Amy can get in on it? Maybe during Whisky Week?

mrr said...

we have some old unopened whisky bottles from the early 1950s'. How do i find out the value and the dates they were made? I have searched the internet and have found some close matches, however the dates are not the same

Chuck Cowdery said...

This post should answer your question.