Hollywood Collector Show - Chicago
By Noah Bender

I would like to tell you about a special day I had. On Saturday March 24th there was a special show in town called the Chicago Hollywood Show. I heard about it here at Brady World and had my buddy Dan, and in-law Cris (who is also a Brady fan) joined me.

I have never been to anything like this, so I had no clue what this was going to be like. From what I heard, it was going to be celebrities coming to meet their fans, with food and drinks. So I thought it was going to be an overcrowded area with lots of lines and waiting for whomever you wanted to see. Boy was I wrong! This was a big inside type flea market set-up, the celebrities were all at tables around the walls of the room, and the rest of the room was people with their set-up booths selling all sorts of TV and movie memorabilia. I was wearing my Barry Williams t-shirt and headed straight over to the Brady table where Barry, Chris, Mike, and Susan were all sitting. I also was able to meet our Brady World president/creator Wendy Winans who came in from Cleveland, OH for the show. Wendy had a special entry form page on her site for a few weeks before the show that said,

The first 6 people to bring the contest entry form to me at the Hollywood Show – Chicago will win a prize. All entries received (including the first 6) will be entered in a drawing to win THE GRAND PRIZE signed by some of the Brady Bunch cast. Only one entry per person, The Grand Prize Winner will be notified on Monday, March 26th. HOPE TO SEE YA IN CHICAGO.

So I printed the form and brought it with, but then purposely left it in the car thinking, well I probably won't luck out by now! The tickets we bought were for 10:00, and the show started at 9:00. So after I met Wendy she asked me if I had a form, and I said, well, I left it in the car. She then said, well, you would be the first person to turn it in. So Cris ran back to the car for me and grabbed it, plus there was still a whole day to go with the show. While I waited for Cris to come back, I gave Wendy 2 homemade DVDs I brought for her of The Brady Kids cartoon (that she only had about 5 of the 22 episodes and I have found almost all of them. So she was happy I had that. I then gave Barry my book that I brought with “Growing Up Brady” that was written by him in 1992 for him to sign. I left it with him for a minute while I went along the rest of the table to meet everyone, and I was able to get a nice picture taken with the 4 of them. As I came back a little later for my book, he was playing dumb talking with his agent and said, Hey have you seen where this nice guy Noah went? He left his book with me but I don’t see where he went. Must be here somewhere, Oh here he is! He then signed it, “Here’s the story Barry Williams” on the title page (which now makes it more valuable)! I also bought a $10.00 8x10 rare photo of the 6 Brady Kids, and the 4 of them signed it near their face (more value to that now too).

I then went on to meet a few other celebrities. Lisa Loring ('Wednesday' from The Addams Family), Butch Patrick and Pat Priest ('Eddie' and 'Marilyn' on The Munsters), Lee Meriwether (who appeared on shows like Batman, Love American Style, and All My Children), Dustin Diamond ('Screech' from Saved By The Bell), and many others. There was always prices to pay for pictures, and/or autographs, everyone had their own way and deals depending on if you took it, or they did and get it developed, etc. So, since I had my own camera with me, I was on the cheapest deal, and everyone had their own card (the size of a postcard) with their picture on it, and a list of everything (or close to it) of what they have starred in for you to take for free. I then talked with Lee Meriwether for a little bit so she was able to tell me some info on The New Andy Griffith Show that only lasted about 13 episodes in 1971 and she played Andy’s wife (which I have been on the look-out for quite some time now). My friend and I then went looking around at all booths of what people were selling and I found a few neat rare things. I found a little Kermit the frog figure for a couple bucks, a complete set of Gilligan’s Island trading cards, and a Brady Bunch plaque with a pin, picture, and all their names for $15.00 (which was a steal) those normally can go for around $50.00 at least. It then got to be about 2:30 and we had enough, and called it a day.

It is now Monday at work. Lunchtime comes around so I turn my phone on and I got an e-mail from Wendy,

Hi Noah:

It was a pleasure to meet you on Saturday. Thank you for the Brady cartoons.

It is my pleasure to let you know you won the prize from the Chicago contest. If you send me your postal address, I will send you a paperback tie-in book, signed by the 4 Bradys that were at the show.

Have a great day - Wendy

So that’s my story of my fun and interesting day Saturday!