Sunday, October 30, 2011

Have a Wacky Halloween!

Just in time for Halloween comes this special Halloween edition of Wacky Packages from Topps:

This special edition of 2011 Wacky Packages Halloween Postcards was available only through, and quickly sold out as it was limited to only 660 sets.

Here is a look at everything that came in the set:

The postcards are large cards that actually do have a back that can be used as a postcard:

Here is a closer look at the 6 postcard titles:

There is also a special Halloween Postcard featuring two other Halloween themed parodies:

In addition to the postcards, there is also a bonus card (which is the standard 2 1/2 x 3 1/2 size)

A mini postcard:

Artist Bio cards:

as well as a sketch card:

This is the 3rd year that Topps has issued postcards with a Halloween theme. In 2010 Topps released a similar set of postcards

that also came with a bonus card

and in 2009, they issued a Wacky Halloween postcard as part of the Series 4 Wacky Packages Postcards set:

It looks like the Halloween Postcards are becoming an annual Wacky Packages tradition.

Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Congratulations Brooks!

On Saturday, October 22 a statue of Brooks Robinson was officially dedicated across the street from Oriole Park at Camden Yards.

The bronze sculpture is located on the plaza at Washington Boulevard and Russell Street (which will now be known as Brooks Robinson Plaza), and was commissioned by The Babe Ruth Birthplace Foundation and The Dorothy L. and Henry A. Rosenberg, Jr. Foundation. As a fitting tribute, Brooks is wearing a gold glove:

Brooks and his wife Connie

were joined at the ceremony by several local officials and about 1,000 enthusiastic O's fans.

Brooks joins Babe Ruth and Johnny Unitas as the third Baltimore sporting legend to be immortalized with a statue, which he noted in his remarks. Brooks said “Never did I expect to have a statue, let alone a statue 300 yards from a statue of the greatest player in major league history – Babe Ruth. And another 300 or 400 yards is the statue of the greatest quarterback in NFL history, Johnny Unitas, a dear friend of mine that I miss very much.”

Congratulations Brooks on this well deserved tribute! I am looking forward to visiting the Plaza and seeing the statue next time I am in Baltimore. Here's to a man I've always admired and respected, ever since I was a kid:

"I just want you to know I have never considered you fans. I've always considered you my friends." - Brooks Robinson

For more information about the Brooks Robinson Statue, please visit

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

1972 Stancraft NFL Posters by George Bartell

I came across a Baltimore Colts poster that was up for auction that I remember having as a kid which really took me back to the mid 1970s when I first started following pro football and I had this hanging up in my room:

I think I got this poster through the Scholastic Book Club at school. Seeing the poster again made me wonder what the other teams' posters looked like.

Fortunately the seller had a number of other teams up for auction as well, so let's take a look:

These posters were done by artist George Bartell. On one of the posters we can see his signature

and on the bottom of the posters they are identified as the NFL Bartell Series with a 1972 copyright, and were manufactured by Stancraft:

The Illustrated NFL shows some of George's other football work:

As these posters demonstrate, George Bartell's art is full of motion, which is why he is probably more well known for his paintings of race cars

In researching George's work, I found that he even did some album cover artwork:

Turning back to George's football work, here is an ad from the October 9, 1972 issue of Sports Illustrated showing the posters:

In addition to posters for all the teams, there was a poster for the AFC

and another for the NFC

According to the order form, there is also a team helmets poster, which means a complete set consisted of 29 posters (26 teams + AFC + NFC + Helmets).

I'm glad that the seller had so many of these posters up for auction as I really enjoyed seeing George Bartell's artwork. Now I just have to track down pictures of the remaining teams to fully document the set.