The Rockford IceHogs held a garage sale on Saturday, June 27 in which the team sold game worn jerseys from the 2014-15 season in addition to game used sticks, a small assortment of gloves and helmets and leftover merchandise and in-game promotions. I woke-up at 5:30 AM that morning to make the 2-hour drive from my place in Chicago so that I could join fellow collector, Chris Jerina, and his wife, Michelle, at the front of the line. Sure enough, when I arrived they were already camped out by doors making me the third person waiting to get into the BMO Center.
Although I have been collecting on and off for nearly a couple of decades, this was actually the first equipment sale that I had ever attended. In going to the sale, like many other collectors, I had a specific agenda. Even though I grew-up being a Blackhawks fan and there were sure to IceHogs jerseys of guys from the most recent Stanley Cup winning team such as Scott Darling and Teuvo Teravainen, the main focus of my collection is my alma mater, Western Michigan University, and I really wanted to get a jersey of former Bronco captain Dane Walters.
With the sale officially beginning at 11:00 AM and us getting there at 8:00, we had three hours to spend waiting. As I know many other collectors would agree, as meaningful as the jerseys in our collections are, the best part about this hobby are the interactions with other collectors and the friendships that develop as a result. Both Chris and Michelle are great, down-to-earth people and as a result, the time we spent waiting really flew by. We discussed various aspects of the hobby in addition to topics outside of the world of jersey collecting. As the line began to grow in size and as the time to enter neared, we began to discuss our strategy for when the doors opened. Since there were three of us and Rockford wore three styles of jerseys, home, away and alternate, we decided it would be best if we each went for a rack and pulled any player that any us were looking for, which was any #19 Walters jerseys for me and any #21 Teravainen and #33 Darling jerseys for Chris and Michelle.