Non-Sport & Entertainment Trading Card News from Non-Sport Update

Press Pass Ceases Operation

Written By: Harris Toser - Jan• 22•15

At the beginning of this month, North Carolina based trading card manufacturer Press Pass Inc. quietly ceased operations.The company had been in business for 22 years. The closure was covered by sports card blogs but has not beein given much play in non-sports. Those who visit the company’s website will see the following notice:

Press Pass Ceases Day to Day Operations

Many will remember Press Pass as a manufacturer of sports cards such as their Nascar, football, and basketball lines, the company produced many non-sport sets over the years going back to 1993 with The Royal Family. While never in the same league as other sports card manufacturers like Topps and Upper Deck, Press Pass was a larger operation than many non-sport card manufacturers and their non-sport releases were well received. Non-Sport Update had a great working relationship with the company over the years. We worked with Press Pass CEO Victor Shaffer from the start after having worked with him at Pro Set. Other we dealt with included Bob Bove, Tom Farrell (who also worked at Donruss and Pinnacle and currently is Vice President of Operations at Upper Deck), and finally, Nick Matijevich, who served as the company’s Vice President of Operation until the doors were closed. All knew the market well and were great to work with.

Over their tenure, Press Pass’s non-sport output was pretty varied including comic book set Tribe – The Intro in 1993, a half-dozen Elvis releases from 2006 to 2012, four KISS sets in 2009 and 2010, children’s television show Yo Gabba Gabba!, and most recently, TV comedy Parks and Recreation. A series based on horror comic Eudaemon was announced in 1993 and promo cards were issued but the set never was produced.

In a recent interview, the company told Beckett Media redemption cards, damaged cards, etc. will not be honored. Press Pass will be missed.

Parks and Recreation relic card


Wizard and Reed Announce Acquisitions

Written By: Harris Toser - Jan• 21•15

Within the past week, both Reed and Wizard World have announced acquisitions of long-running East and West Coast shows. Reed Exhibitions, through its ReedPOP subsidiary, has purchased Emerald City Comicon (ECCC). ECCC began in 2003 with 2,500 attendees and has grown to 70,000 fans in 2014. Show organizers expect 80,000 fans this year when the show takes place on the weekend of March 27-29 in downtown Seattle.

Emerald City Comicon

ReedPOP will add ECCC to its portfolio which also includes New York Comic Con, Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo (CEC2), Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) Prime, East, South, and Australia, Star Wars Celebration, and many others.

ECCC Convention Director Jim Demonakos had this to say about the merger: “We are huge fans of what ReedPOP is doing across the globe in this pop culture space that ECCC also occupies and are excited to have them help us continue to deliver an amazing fan experience to our attendees. Moreso, we’re very much looking forward to bringing the ECCC brand of fan-focused attention to help amplify their events even further as well.”

This year’s ECCC boasts a tremendous slate of celebrity, artist, writer, and cosplay guests including John Barrowman, Karen Allen, Morena Baccarin, LeVar Burton, Stan Lee, Katie Cook, Kevin Eastman, and many others. More information about ECCC can be found at the show’s website

Just days after the Reed announcement, Wizard World announced it had purchased Pittsburgh Comicon from founder and longtime owner Renee George. Pittsburgh Comicon increases Wizard World’s number of shows for 2015 to 25.

Wizard World Comic Con Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh Comicon started in 1994. Wizard World CEO John Macaluso has said “We are excited to inject the Wizard World flavor in the Pittsburgh market, a city we’ve been wanting to expand to for many years. We are looking forward to seeing all our fans in September!” And founder Renee George said “I am pleased that Wizard World will be able to continue the two-decade tradition of our show. It’s a great opportunity for all of our loyal attendees in the area to take part in an even bigger event with more of what they have enjoyed for many years.”

The 2015 edition of Wizard Wold Comic Con Pittsburgh will take place September 11-13 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. Guests for the show have not yet been announced. More information about Pittsburgh Comicon can be found at Wizard World’s Pittsburgh page.

Philly & Chicago to Go Bats!

Written By: Alan Biegel - Jan• 20•15

Wizard Worlds’ CEO, John Macaluso, announced yesterday that Ben McKenzie, who plays the lead character James Gordon in the hit Fox TV show Gotham, will make his first two Wizard World Comic Con appearances in Philadelphia (May 9-10) and Chicago (August 22-23). Also well-known for his portrayals of Officer Ben Sherman in NBC’s Southland and, earlier, as Ryan Atwood in the teen favorite The O.C. on Fox, McKenzie will greet fans, sign autographs, pose for photo ops and conduct interactive Q&A sessions at the two flagship shows. McKenzie’s appearances will be the only ones in North America in which fans can get autographs and photo ops.

For more on the Wizard World Comic Cons, visit

Now, manufacturers, where is the Gotham trading card set?

Wizard World - Ben McKenzie

Card Collectors News Magazine Editor Steps Down, Loraine Speed Takes Over

Written By: Harris Toser - Jan• 19•15

After 36 years as editor of London Cigarette Card Company’s Card Collectors News magazine, Frank Doggett has announced he is standing down as Editor next month. Card Collectors News magazine has been published continuously since 1933 and in that time, has only had three editors. For comparison’s sake, Non-Sport Update has had five Editor-in-Chief’s since its 1990 inception, which many would consider a small number for a 25 year old publication. So to have just three Editors in 82 years is quite amazing!

Card Collectors News (2013)

Prior to London Cigarette Card Company, where he started in 1976, Doggett worked at London Transport, while the company was still based in Chiswick, London. In 1978 when the company was about to relocate to Somerset, he took over as editor of Card Collectors News magazine from Dorothy Bagnall. During his time at the magazine, Doggett saw the addition of a Set of the Month, color illustrations, and much more. He initially retired as a Director of the company seven years ago, but stayed on as editor of the magazine.

The new editor, as from March 2015, will be Loraine Speed. Loraine has worked at London Cigarette Card Company for many years and is looking forward to the challenge of ensuring the continuing success of the magazine.

More information: Visit London Cigarette Card Company for more information on Card Collectors News magazine.

Card Collectors News Editors Frank Doggett and Loraine Speed

Card Collectors News Editors Frank Doggett and Loraine Speed