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It all started when I was about five years old.
I went to my local Modell’s sporting goods store, and saw packs of baseball cards. I loved baseball. I got my dad to buy me a pack and was fascinated with every single card. It was so cool to look at the stats on the backs of cards and I loved the idea of collecting my favorite players. Over the next few years I grew away from collecting, until I was 11 years old. This is when I got back into it, and I was so glad I did. I eventually found a local card shop and was introduced to jersey and autographed cards. From here things just grew, and I have been a devoted collector of cards ever since.
The passion I showed towards collecting also translated to filming box breaks and showing off my card collection on YouTube. I love opening boxes of cards because it’s so exciting: you never know what awesome cards may lay in a box. I am also an avid reader of Beckett Sports Card Monthly (I have been since it was first introduced). Just like how I loved opening boxes of cards (especially Upper Deck cards), I loved reading about their “box breaks”. In every issue of the magazine, for every sport, they would do a review of a box or two they recently opened and show what they got in that box.
This inspired me to write to Beckett with my own idea: they should have a “guest reviewer” who sends in a review of a box, and the crew at Beckett picks one to be featured in a future issue of the magazine. It turned out that they liked my idea and told me to write a review of the latest box I opened, and they would put it in the next issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly. They sent me a free box of cards, too! I couldn’t believe it. I sent in a review and breakdown of the cards I pulled in a box of 2008 Upper Deck Heroes Baseball and they loved it. It’s just a typical example of why I love the hobby even more!
So as you can see, the hobby of collecting cards is way more than just spending money for pieces of cardboard. It is the thrill of opening the pack. It is the excitement of pulling a nice card. It is the joy that comes with sharing the same interest as so many other people out there. People don’t realize how nice these card companies are. Upper Deck, of course, is always trying to give back to the awesome collectors they have, like you and me. From their program for young collectors, Upper Deck Kids, which offered lots of awesome free prizes and sweepstakes for entering codes off of UD cards; to the UD Diamond Club, which offers wonderful opportunities of a lifetime for some of the übercollectors out there, Upper Deck is a card company that cares about the collectors.
Richie Sliwinski, 14, is a young card collector who enjoys playing, watching, and talking about sports, hanging out with friends, going on the computer . . . and of course, collecting cards! He has been featured in Beckett Sports Card Monthly, Sports Illustrated for Kids, and was a kid blogger for Upper Deck Kids.