Collecting autographs has become an extremely popular pastime among sports fans. Whether it’s baseball, basketball, running, football, or hockey, getting your favorite athlete’s autograph can be both a fun and rewarding hobby. And, surprisingly, it’s not as difficult as you might think.
If you have the opportunity to visit a training camp for your favorite sports team, a racing store for your favorite racing driver, or a special autograph signing event, this will be a great way to get an autograph in no one. Bring your own items to sign and be sure to pack a Sharpie marker, or other permanent marker! Almost all training camps offer autograph opportunities for fans. Location information, as well as schedules and policies, are available from all major sports organizations. For more information, fans can call the following numbers and ask questions about the training dates and locations of their favorite teams:
MLB – 1-212-931-7800
NBA – 1-212-655-0880
NFL – 1-800-372-2000
NHL – 1-212-789-2000
The most common things to sign when collecting autographs are photos and cards. But, there are many other options for collectors who want to build a truly unique collection of memorabilia. Other items to consider would be a hockey puck, basketball, baseball, tennis or golf ball, soccer ball, sports jersey, racing flag, or helmet. Always be polite when requesting an autograph and never ask for more than two items to be signed at one time.
If your geographic location or schedule doesn’t allow you to get an autograph in person, don’t give up. Many fans love to collect autographs by mail and do so with great success. Before you do anything, you will need a specific address. A full list of team addresses, rosters and official team websites can be found at the following locations:
NBA – http://www.nba.com
NASCAR – http://www.raceshops.com
Now that you have an address, you are ready to begin by simply writing a polite letter to your favorite athlete. Make sure to let him know how much you appreciate his involvement in the sport he has chosen and ask him for an autograph. Above all, remember to keep it short but also pleasant. If possible, always write your letter by hand – avoid typing it as it may look like a “type” letter. You’ll want to make sure your favorite athlete knows you’re sincere in your quest for their autograph. If you ask her to provide the photo, be sure to say “please” and “thank you”. When your letter is ready to send, fold it to fit in envelope # 10. You will also need to put $ 0.60 postage on a 9×12 envelope, fold it 3 ways and place it. inside with your letter. This will serve as your postage-paid envelope, so don’t forget to write your address on the envelope so your photo will come back to you. It is also a good idea to write “Photo – Please do not fold” in the lower left corner of your 9×12 SASE.
If you are requesting a signed form, you must provide your own. The most popular choice is the 3×5 unsettled plain white index cards. For this request, use a full size envelope such as SASE (self-addressed postage-paid envelope) and affix $ 0.37 for return shipping. If you live outside of the United States, please check with your postmaster for the exact amount of postage required.
If you decide to send larger items for autographing, such as a baseball, helmet, or jersey, you can choose to send the return shipping in bulk inside the box with your request, which will allow the athlete to sign your item and simply affix the postage. on your box for return shipping. Otherwise, you can just send a few dollars and let them know the funds are being sent to cover the cost of returning.
Now that you have started your new collection, know that you can also buy autographs from a dealer if you are unable to acquire them yourself. The industry has been hit hard by forgery and fake certificates of authenticity, so find a dealer before buying from them. Take into account how many years they have been in business, whether or not they are a member of the Better Business Bureau in their region and, if they are, check to see if they have had any complaints filed against them through visiting BBB http://www.BBB.org. In the end, a Certificate of Authenticity is only as good as the person behind the guarantee. The key is knowing who you are buying from, researching other examples of genuine signatures, and considering each factor before making a final buying decision. Equipped with a lot of knowledge, every fan can make the hobby of collecting autographs a fun and rewarding one.