“Vicious” Verne Siebert is an ex-pro wrestler who turned to hosting collectibles fairs in the early ‘90s.
“It’s a market I’ve always been interested in and I’m a collector,” Siebert said.
“I started doing sports card shows, strictly sports cards, then years later I did computer swap meets, then comic and toys.”
Siebert sold off his end of the sports card show five years ago, and since has been focusing on comic books, action figures and pop culture memorabilia.
Some collectables never go out of style but being fresh and topical is part of continuing to appeal to collectors.
While Star Wars and Batman remain staples of the fair, one of the most popular items recently have been the Walking Dead comics that were the genesis of the hit TV show.
The pop culture fair is held in Marpole’s Scottish cultural centre
“One of the things that’s happening is a lot of merchandise collecting is tied into a TV show or cartoon,” Siebert said.
Siebert is assisted by long time friend Archie Henderson, who helps set up for the fairs and then the cleanup afterwards.
“I know Verne from his wrestling days,” Henderson said.
“Some days are more focused on collectibles than others, some days more computers.”
Despite being surrounded by pop culture memorabilia on a regular basis, Henderson admits the novelty hasn’t worn off.
“I was really tempted by this old Nintendo,” Henderson said.
“There’s the whole set up, with controllers and everything.”
With comics, video games, action figures and computer parts, the fair has a little bit of everything
Brendan Mongeon, a collectible fair veteran, returned to capitalize on people’s nostalgia by hawking his retro video games systems and games.
“You’re not just selling games, you’re selling the memories attached to it,” Mongeon said.
The next collectible fair will be held at the Scottish Cultural Centre on Dec. 7 with admission set at $3.
Organizer Verne Siebert talks about collecting and why it’s predominantly a male hobby.
Reported by Ben Bulmer and Brian Horstead