C.O.R.P.S. Pipe Smokers Celebration & Exposition
by Russ Ouellette
The Great Pipe Show 'C.O.R.P.S. Pipe Smokers Celebration & Exibition' is live today (Sat. Oct. 12th) and tomorrow (Sun. Oct. 13th) for its 29th Edition!
Neatpipes is attending the show regularly since 2009 and we are happy to present today a LIVE Picture report, if you can't attend the show personally.
It's a great pleasure to host on our Blog, Russ Ouellette review of the show
The CORPS Expo at the Richmond Convention Center in Richmond, Virginia is the longest continuously running pipe show in the United States. 2013 marked the 29th annual expo, and, as always, I was looking forward to it with great anticipation.
To me, the hallmark of the show is the club, itself. The members are friendly, incredibly helpful and a lot of fun to be with. When we checked in, we saw so many familiar faces, and the Welcome Dinner was truly wonderful, featuring an interesting and controversial after-dinner talk by one of my favorite pipe people, Neill Archer Roan ofwww.apassionforpipes.com.
Saturday was full of hustle and bustle as everyone prepared their tables for the show, and, as expected, the gates opened to a steady stream of enthusiasts from up and down the east coast. Many of the attendees are folks that I have known for a number of years, and it’s fun catching up with people and talking about the things that interest them.
This year was especially nice, as I saw a number of pipemakers who haven’t been at the show in the past few years. There was an added twist to this year, as well. A number of tobacco makers (myself included) supplied unmarked tobacco blends for people to try and to vote on. Since not everyone tried all the blends, it was more for fun than anything else, but it gave people a chance to try a number of tobaccos they might not have ever sampled.
We were honored to be asked by the club to make this year’s show blend, which is a broken flake Virginia/Perique/dark-fired blend called Monument Avenue. It was very well received among the people who tried it, and it is selling quite well. When I think of the other companies that have made these blends in the past, I feel humbled to be included.
Saturday night was an evening of good food and great friends, as we spent hours in the smoking area sharing a few smokes and a lot of stories with our compatriots. Even though I had intended to go to bed early, it never happened, as we were there until they told us it was time to leave, at midnight.
Sunday is always the quieter day, but that’s fine because it meant having the time to talk with a number of vendors to buy pipes and talk about business in general. We still saw and spoke to a good number of customers, but it was actually a little nice to have a slower pace. We packed up in the middle of the afternoon, and loaded the car to be on the road by 4 pm to head back to Pennsylvania.
We arrived late Sunday night, knowing that we had to be in to work Monday morning, but it wasn’t a problem, as we had some great memories to take with us.
Ashton Churchwarden (Bill Taylor Era)
Ashton Pebble Shell, Magnum
Chris Asteriou, Canadian
Vintage Caminetto, 1979
Manduela & Poul Ilsted
Rad Davis, shape 55
New Luciano, Bamboo
Tonino Jacono, King