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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

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

by Frank Nix, and, Rosanna and Bill Harris.




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Convention time is drawing near with only a few months left until we will all gather at the Holiday Inn Rushmore Plaza, 505 North Fifth Street, Rapid City, South Dakota, 57701. The cut-off date for registrations at the host hotel is April 2, 2018. If you have not made your reservation, do so as soon as possible. If we exceed the block of rooms early enough, we may be able to secure more rooms at the rates of $119, $129,and $149. Call the hotel directly at 1-605-348-4000 to make sure that you receive the convention booking rate and use code AMI. Please send completed registration forms to Dianne Reidy, 1761 Loma Roja Drive, Santa Ana, CA 92705. (Please make a copy for your file before sending to Dianne.)

The registration insert has the daily schedule on the back side. Look it over for more detailed information on the daily activities. We want you to enjoy your tour of this exceptional tourist area known as the Black Hills. The first day will be a tour of the towns and sights west of Rapid City - Sturgis, Spearfish Canyon, Lead, and Deadwood. On this day breakfast, lunch, and dinner are on your own. The second day is a full day beginning with breakfast provided by the tour operator and then on to Mount Rushmore National Monument to view the heads of four of our most important presidents. At the Monument, you will have an opportunity to view a video of how the work was done and by whom. It is an awe-inspiring location and is visited annually by millions of people from around the world. Then on through Custer State Park which is home to a variety of wild life that roam freely in the park. Finally, the day’s touring ends at the Crazy Horse Memorial which is the largest mountain carving in-progress at this time. To conclude the day, the tour operator will provide a chuck wagon dinner complete with a western musical show. On this day lunch is on your own. The third day is more of a leisure day which begins after breakfast on your own with a ride to Keystone, where you will be able to see this small tourist town as it awakens and then board the 1880s steam train for a one-hour ride to Hill City. Hill City is a vibrant small town calling itself the “Heart of the Hills.” Before boarding the bus for Custer, there may be time to stop by the South Dakota State Railroad Museum on the same grounds as the rail station. Once on the buses, we will all go on to Custer and stop at a newly opened buffet restaurant, the Custer Corral Family Buffet.

Once lunch has concluded, the buses will take us five miles west of town to the Harris Music Collection where we will spend the afternoon listening to a variety of musical instruments including nickelodeons, orchestrions, café organs, fairground organs, dance organs, a Dutch street organ, and Gavioli concert organ. Closing out the day at the Holiday Inn will be the famous “Pumper Contest” at the Holiday Inn. On this day breakfast, lunch, and dinner are on your own. The fourth day is reserved for workshops (many are lined up and more are being lined up), the Mart, and the evening Banquet. On this day breakfast and lunch are on your own. The fifth and last day begins with the Farewell Breakfast which concludes the Annual Meeting.

There is much to see for those of you coming by car to this area. You can fly into Rapid City Regional Airport on any of the major airlines who make connections in their hubs in Denver, Salt Lake City, Minneapolis, Chicago, Dallas, etc. (For information on flights and help with booking, please contact our local travel agent, Cathy at Travel Adventures, 605-673- 3590. She will help with land packages or air packages. She knows the area like the back of her hand.) The two closest airports larger than Rapid City Regional Airport are Denver International - approximately 350 miles south - and Sioux Falls Regional Airport - approximately 355 miles east. Either drive is six to seven hours unless of course, you pause along the way to view some of the sights.

Coming from Denver International Airport you will travel north on I-25 through northeast Colorado and cross into Wyoming. Cheyenne is the state capitol where there is a lot to see. There are two options from that point either staying on I-25 north to Oren Junction, then east on W 18/20 to Lusk, north on WY 18/85 to New Castle and then east on Hwy 16 toward Custer, SD. Along the way Jewel Cave is an interesting stop with tours ongoing throughout the day. There is plenty to see and do in Custer before heading north to Rapid City and the Holiday Inn. The other option is to remain on I- 25 going through Casper, WY and on to Buffalo to join I-90 East. Going this route affords an easy stop at Devils Tower. Continuing on I-90 takes you to Rapid City.

Coming from Sioux Falls, SD on I-90 takes in many tourist areas and sights to be seen. One such attraction is in Mitchell seventy miles from Sioux Falls. It is home to the world famous “Corn Palace.” It is a stunning, whimsical civic center, decorated inside and out with more than 275,000 colorful ears of corn. Stop further west to see the great Missouri River at Chamberlain / Oacoma and be sure to pick up your 5˘ coffee and a savory meal at Al’s Oasis, the biggest watering hole along I-90. On to Murdo where it is a must to visit the Pioneer Auto Show & Prairie Town. Chances are you will be personally welcomed to South Dakota by owner/collector Dave Geisler at his museum. Only twenty miles west of Murdo, you can explore more than thirty authentically furnished pioneer buildings at South Dakota’s Original 1880 Town. Just another twenty miles west, you will start getting the first glimpses of Badlands formations near the town of Kadoka. A full day could be spent exploring the Badlands if that works into your schedule. The Minuteman Missile National Historic Site at the edge of the Badlands is another interesting stop. Then on to Wall. Main Street features the National Grasslands Visitor Center, a great source for rock-hounding maps and the various agriculture land uses in the area, as well a variety of restaurants, gift shops, and of course the #1 Roadside Attraction in America: Wall Drug Store. Wall Drug Store has been entertaining and educating the traveling public since 1931. There is something for everyone at Wall Drug that will give a very entertaining and meaningful experience with world-class aesthetics. Just before arriving in Rapid City, you can visit the South Dakota Air and Space Museum at Ellsworth Air Force Base.

There are many places in and around Rapid City for everyone to see and experience before or after the Convention. Just a few mentioned here are: Dinosaur Park, The Reptile Gardens, Dinosaur Museum, Storybook Island, Museum of Geology, Stavkirke Church, The Journey Museum & Learning Center, Dahl Arts Center, Main Street Square and the Sculpture Project, The City of Presidents, Bear Country USA, and America’s Founding Fathers Exhibit. You can be sure to have many wonderful experiences here in the Black Hills!



IS APRIL 2, 2018.

Contact Frank Nix for more information: (818) 884 - 6849

Convention's Schedule of Events

June 3rd - Sunday Board Meeting — others arriving early might like to tour downtown Rapid City using the free city tour buses which stop at the hotel and view the Presidents’ sculptures or go to some of the other tourist venues close to Rapid City in your own vehicle.

June 4th - Monday Welcome Breakfast. A full day tour beginning with a scenic drive through Spearfish Canyon. Then on to visit the National Historic Landmark District of Deadwood which is famous for Wild Bill Hickok, Calamity Jane, and many others. We will explore the Sanford Underground Research Facility at the Homestake Mine in Lead. This is the deepest and most productive gold mine in North America. The depth of the mine is 8 thousand feet (sorry we cannot go down). Many types of experiments, including neutrinos and dark matter are conducted at this facility. A final stop for the day in Sturgis which is famous for the bike rally each year in August bringing in record crowds of “bikers.” Lunch and dinner on your own. (The route may be changed once the contract is signed with the tour operator.)

June 5th - Tuesday Full day tour beginning with an early breakfast and then on to Custer State Park, Mount Rushmore, and the Crazy Horse Indian Memorial. The day ends with an authentic chuck wagon dinner and show. Lunch on your own at Crazy Horse.

June 6th - Wednesday
Breakfast on your own until the bus departs for the 1880’s Steam Engine Train ride from Keystone to Hill City. On to Custer for lunch on your own at the Custer Corral. Then a short bus ride to the wonderful collection of Bill and Rosanna Harris. Finally back to the hotel and dinner on your own. We end the day with the world famous AMICA pumper contest in the hotel Hospitality Room. (The route may be changed once the contract is signed with the tour operator.)

June 7th - Thursday A more relaxing day begins with breakfast on your own. Workshops will be held in the morning followed by lunch on your own. The Mart will be held in the afternoon. At 6 PM - no host cocktails. 7 PM our wonderful Banquet and dance with band from Rapid City.

June 8th - Friday
- Farewell breakfast and Annual Meeting. After the Annual Meeting, rent a car or use your car to visit the incredible places throughout South Dakota. You are in a “tourist area” supreme!


More information will be provided in future issues of the AMICA Bulletin.

Be sure to check out the South Dakota Tourism website which is a treasure trove of material for all of the other exciting places to visit and things to experience in South Dakota – the Badlands east of Rapid City, Mammoth Site in Hot Springs, Wind Cave National Park near Hot Springs, Wall Drug, the Corn Palace, Pioneer Auto Museum in Murdo and the Devils Tower nearby in Wyoming.

Word to the wise: South Dakota is a very popular tourist destination and rooms could become scarce quickly in our time period. Get your reservation completed and sent in to Dianne Reidy (above) and make your room reservations sooner rather than later. This will give us a heads up if we need to make arrangements for more rooms. Watch the Bulletin for more information highlights of what to see before and after the convention.

Video Promo can be found below, and on the AMICA Home page.


55th Annual
AMICA Convention Preview

Rapid City, South Dakota
June 3-8, 2018


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

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