Free Pens, Goodie Bags and Talking Shop - Our 1st NJ Pen Club Meetup

On Memorial Day weekend, Saturday to be exact, convened the inaugural NJ Pen Club Meetup at the Hazlet Library. We had a fine turnout of enthusiastic pen-lovers and talked pens, inks and paper for a solid 3 hours on the Holiday weekend.

Part of the activities that Goldspot Pens sponsored was a giveaway raffle for a brand-new Pelikan M200 Cafe Creme fountain pen. Everyone wrote their names on little pieces of paper from their new, complimentary Rhodia pads and we picked one out of a coffee cup. Larry was our lucky winner.

Larry with his new Pelikan M200 Cafe Creme Fountain Pen
We kicked off the meet with an icebreaker where we went around the table and talked about our favorite pen currently in-hand. The collections each person came with were as diverse as the personalities that brought them. Edison, Mont Blanc, Nakaya, Pilot, Pelikan, Sailor, Delta, TWSBI and Visconti were all represented as favorites of the group.

Besides sharing our absolute favorites, when we started talking amongst each other, showing off our personal collections, it was apparent the "addiction" ran strong with this crowd. Some of us brought vintage pens, flexible nibs, pens modified by nib meisters and custom-made pens. We "oo'ed" and "ah'ed" at the meticulous handwriting and ink keeping records that some folks brought with them. A bag of ink samples was passed around for anyone who wanted to take some colors that were no longer desired by the original owner.

Tom with Goldspot (left) trying out a Vintage Pelikan 400NN with Dan

We took a survey prior to the meet to see if there were any special requests for pens that people wanted to see at the meet-up that we can bring. We filled up a Monteverde Zipper Case full of pens to try out, including a Pelikan M805 Stresemann, Conklin Crescent Filler with a Stub nib, Lamy AL-Star Copper Orange, Sailor 1911L in a Zoom nib and a Pilot Namiki Falcon. We passed around pens and tried scribbled some "quick brown foxes" on note paper to get a feel for the pens we were sampling.

Pens, Laughs and Goodies Galore

Goldspot put together goodie bags that were handed out to every attendee. Every bag included some pen-related treats from Pilot, Pelikan, InkJournal, Rhodia and ink samples to try.

As for the next meeting, the summer is upon us, which means vacation for most people. However, we're looking to squeeze another meet up in soon. Up for discussion was the focus and location of the next meet. The Hazlet Library was gracious to provide us the space for our first meeting, but a more central location within the state may be better suited for most of our attendees. We may take more of an in-depth approach to discussing nib maintenance and tuning, but are looking for someone in the area who would be more technically adept at leading a nib tuning workshop.

We may also look to link up with the Philly Pen Posse and/or the Big Apple Pen Club for a future mega-meet-up at a mutually agreed upon location.

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