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55th annual - AMICA CONVENTION
BLACK HILLS - South Dakota
June 3 - 8, 2018

          Encyclopedia of Disc Music Boxes 1881 - 1920
       A History,
          Catalog Raisonné,
                and Appreciation.
                    By Q. David Bowers
       An AMICA-International Publication

Welcome to AMICA’s
Golden 50th Anniversary Convention!

Members of the Founding Chapter are pleased to be hosting this memorable event.  We are celebrating with one of the best convention programs ever.  Please help spread the word that the convention is also open to members of sister organizations in the music box, street organ, pipe organ and carousel worlds.  We think the convention will be too good for anyone to miss!  This article will present the planned schedule and, hopefully, answer all of your questions.

Click here to watch a Convention Preview Movie

Click here for the Registration Form

Further Questions? Please contact
Bob Gonzalez


Holiday Inn Golden Gateway
1500 Van Ness Ave., San Francisco, CA 94109
Phone 415/441-4000.

The rate is $119 per night plus tax.  The special rate expires June 16, 2013. Register early to ensure you get one of the 100 rooms reserved for us and especially if you plan to extend your stay.  Parking in hotel garage is $25 per day plus tax.

IMPORTANT  If you wish to extend your stay, plan to stay after the convention only.  They won’t honor the convention rate for dates before July 10, 2013 and post convention dates are subject to room availability.  Call the local phone number above to ensure the convention rate.  Confirmations will show $40 parking.  This will be adjusted to $25 per agreement.


Detailed information about transit options to the hotel from San Francisco International Airport (SFO) will be found at  Passengers flying to Oakland International Airport (OAK) may go to for transit options.  Super Shuttle is currently $17.


For conventioneers arriving on Tuesday evening in order to attend the Board meeting on Wednesday, we are planning an interesting day for those not attending the meeting.  On Wednesday we will ride the California Street cable car from the hotel, over Nob Hill, and down to the Ferry Building.  There we will take the next ferry to Sausalito for lunch and shopping in this beautiful and charming destination.  We will return when ready.  There will be a member of the Founding Chapter to guide the trip.  Transportation costs should be around $25 R/T.  Lunch and shopping are up to you.   How many in your party will go? __TBD__ Day trips to the wine country or Muir Woods are possible.  Contact us if interested:


On Thursday after breakfast, but before the Champagne Reception, we include two custom ninety minute tours of San Francisco.  The tours were created from the best of various city tours. Visit the website below for descriptions of the tours.  Choose either the Golden Gate Park tour or the Downtown tour.  You can enter your selections on this form or you can “Buy” the ones you want on the site.  Just enter the info requested and work toward the checkout to enter your name.  There is no charge.  We omitted the Wharf area as you will go there on Friday. Select your preference on the reverse side.  The links to the left on the baove page offer information on optional tours you may take on extended stay days. 


Refer to the website under City Tour Choice.  See the offerings on the left side.  Tours are possible to places like Legion of Honor, wine country, and more.  Let us know your choice when you pick up your name tag at the hotel.  We can gauge interest and see if a group can be assembled for a special tour.  If you will have a car and want to go to one of the tour destinations, let Bob Gonzalez know so that we have an idea of the number of people to expect.

Convention Schedule


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

8:30 am - Board meeting begins.

9:00 am – Those not attending the Board meeting may join a group of adventurers for a delightful day-trip.  As a group, you will hop-on the California Street cable car just steps from the hotel.  Your cable car will climb Nob Hill, pass through the financial district, and end at the Ferry Building.  You will take the next ferry to Sausalito, CA for sightseeing, shopping and luncheon.  The views across the bay to San Francisco are exceptional and you will love the cruise.  When the group is ready to leave Sausalito, you may retrace your steps using the ferry and cable car.  Or, you may take a Golden Gate bus that will take you from Sausalito to one-half block from the hotel.  Round trip travel will be about $25 and lunch is up to you.  A Founding Chapter member will guide the group.  In case of a large interest in this trip, a cable car may be too small and we may have to secure a tour bus.

The tour bus company we are working with also offers wine country and other day get-away day trips.  See their website address on the registration form.

5:00 pm – Happy-hour with appetizers served in the Hospitality room.  There will be no-host bar and other drinks available.


Thursday, July 11, 2013

8:30 am – Welcome breakfast with introductions and orientation.

10:30 am – 1:30 pm – Two ninety minute tours are provided at about 10:30 and noon.  We will use open-top London style buses.  Two choices are described on a special website.  These are custom tours comprised of the best of the many city tour loops the company offers.  We will tabulate the choices you make and assign busses according to demand.  See the registration form.

2:30 pm – Group A, about half of attendees, will shuttle bus from the hotel to the lovely Victorian home of Richard Reutlinger (less than one mile) for a champagne reception and a look at his impressive collection.  Richard’s is probably the most photographed Victorian home in San Francisco and is really something to see. The bus will return to the hotel for the remainder of the Group.  This will provide a few minutes for the first bus passengers to get drinks and begin looking around.  This arrangement is better than if everyone arrives at once.  The bus will have everyone back at the hotel by 5:30 pm.

3:00 pm – Group B will enjoy an illustrated concert by Frederick Hodges, noted pianist and expert in the music for the reproducing piano.  He will discuss and demonstrate the styles of the 1920s and 1930s keyboard wizards who played the piano rolls we love.  He will highlight recent fascinating discoveries about the piano roll arrangements of Ferde Grofé.  The performance will end at about 5:00 pm.

Dinner is on your own.

7:00 pm – Group B will shuttle to Richard’s Victorian home for their champagne reception.  Everyone will return to the hotel by 10:00 pm.

7:30 pm – Group A will enjoy a repeat concert by Frederick Hodges.

Friday, July 12, 2013

9:00 am – Everyone will board chartered busses for the short trip to the Ferry Building.  Opening in 1898 on the site of the 1875 wooden Ferry House, the Ferry Building became the transportation focal point for anyone arriving by train from the East, as well as from all the East Bay and Marin residents who worked in the city.  From the Gold Rush until the 1930s, arrival by ferryboat became the only way travelers and commuters, except those coming from the Peninsula, could reach the city.

The building has recently been remodeled into a large public market space populated with open farmers’ market stalls and neat shops and boutiques. Outdoors, on the bay side of the building, there are park benches where you can view the Bay Bridge and cities in the East Bay.

11:30 am – You will walk the few hundred feet  from the Ferry Building to Pier Three (transport provided if needed) and board a chartered Hornblower yacht for a two-hour luncheon and bay sightseeing cruise.  You will see the sights from a new perspective and cruise under the Golden Gate Bridge and view close by Alcatraz. 

2:00 pm – The yacht will return to Pier Three and you will board busses for the short drive down the Embarcadero to the Fisherman’s Wharf area.  You will have about two hours to visit the attractions of your choice.  Certainly the Mechanical Music Museum will be of interest.  But, don’t miss the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park and the freshly renovated Maritime Museum.  Admission to the museum is free and the building’s spectacular WPA era murals and architecture are on display as well as exhibits of early San Francisco.  Park rangers offer tours daily.  It may be a bit far to walk for some, but we can have one of the busses drive you over.    Ghirardelli Square is across the street from the Maritime Museum.  The “Square” is famous for its shopping, but you must pick-up a box of Ghirardelli chocolates for the folks back home.  Fisherman’s Wharf is at Pier 45 (Piers are odd numbered this side of the Ferry Building).  Nearby Pier 39 is a very popular destination where you can view the infamous sea lions basking in the sun and see the street musicians, magicians and costumed super-heroes at work.

4:30 pm – You may either board a bus to return to the hotel, or you may choose to remain in the Wharf area and have dinner at one of the many famous restaurants located there.  You will have to return to the hotel on your own if you dine at the Wharf.  But it is only about two miles from hotel, so a taxi would be reasonable or you can use public transportation.  We will provide directions.

Dinner is on your own.

7:00 pm – Pumper contest.  Who will take the “Footie” home this year?

8:00 pm – Live music by the Raspberry Jam Band, a small orchestra led by ragtime historian, composer and pianist Tom Brier.  Tom is well known to those who attend ragtime festivals nationwide.  The Raspberries are a fun group to hear, and you are sure to enjoy the rarely heard ragtime tunes from Tom’s extensive sheet music collection. 

Saturday, July 13, 2013

9:00, 10:00, 11:00 am – Workshops.  Specific topics to be announced.

Noon – Lunch is on your own.

1:15 pm – Mart opens.  (We may refer to the mart as the “swap meet” to meet local permit requirements on markets)

1:30 pm – "Cut it! Pin it! Sew it!" - The Making of the Moderne American Modiste: Join Theresa LaQuey, custom clothier and designer for Simplicity Pattern Company, as she brings vintage sewing patterns to life! In this fashion show, we celebrate the golden era of American home sewing by showing not just a bunch of pretty sewing pattern covers--but also what the garments look like when they are made up and modeled. Come and feast your eyes on this fiesta of fabric, design, and stitching!

6:00 pm – Social hour before banquet begins.  No-host cash bar.

7:00 pm – Banquet featuring awards presented by President Tim Baxter and distribution of table favors.

Afterward:  Music for listening and dancing by the San Francisco Starlight Ensemble.  You will enjoy hearing dance music from the ‘20s and ‘30s authentically played by musicians who truly love the musical styling’s of that period.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

8:30 am – Farewell breakfast featuring closing remarks, information about the 2014 convention and passing the banner.

Afterward:  Optional Sunday activities.  The web-site used to select your Thursday city tour will also allow you to select from a number of Sunday destinations.  The tour company can charter smaller vehicles if groups wish to see sights; such as the organ concert at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco, visits to home collections in the East Bay, San Jose, etc.   As before, if demand exists for a particular activity, we will attempt to organize transportation. 

Additional Information

Food Service

Registration includes: Wednesday happy hour cash bar with included hors d’oeuvres, Thursday welcome breakfast, Thursday Champagne reception with hors d’oeuvres, Friday lunch on San Francisco Bay, Saturday banquet, and Sunday farewell breakfast.  There are dozens of local restaurants within one block of the hotel.  A list will be provided.


Registration includes: Thursday concert by Frederick Hodges featuring the compositions and styles of reproducing piano artists such as Adam Carroll, Phil Ohman, and others along with their unpublished works available only on piano rolls.  The Friday concert will be performed by the Raspberry Jam Band featuring ragtime piano wizard Tom Brier with Julia Riley on flute.  The Saturday evening concert will be performed by the San Francisco Starlight Ensemble with dance floor.



©2018 AMICA International
Automatic Musical Instrument Collectors' Association,
a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.

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