The United States Mint has set the launch ceremony dates for this year’s remaining America the Beautiful Quarters. Each of the ceremonies will take place one or more days following the circulation release date for the coins.
Launch ceremonies can be popular destinations for collectors since they are typically followed by a coin exchange where attendees can exchange currency for rolls of the newly issued coins at face value.
Collector attendance at launch ceremonies seemed to peak with the 2009 “Formative Years” Lincoln Cent ceremony, which was attended by about 3,000 people. The most recent ceremony for the Yellowstone National Park Quarter attracted about 1,500 attendees, although much of the crowd seemed to be made up of local residents or those already vacationing in the park who happened to hear about the event.
The Yosemite National Park Quarter will be released into circulation on July 26, 2010. The official launch ceremony will be held on Thursday, July 29, 2010 at 11:00 AM PT at the Valley Visitor’s Center, Yosemite Valley Loop, Yosemite, California.
The Grand Canyon National Park Quarter has a circulation release date of September 20, 2010. The launch ceremony will take place the following day on Tuesday, September 21, 2010 at 1:00 PM PT on the grounds adjacent to El Tovar Hotel, Grand Canyon, Arizona.
The Mount Hood National Forest Quarter will be the final release of the year on November 15, 2010. The launch ceremony will be held on Wednesday, November 17, 2010 at 10:00 AM PT at the World Forest Center, 4033 SW Canyon Road, Portland, Oregon.
America the Beautiful 5 oz Silver Bullion Coins
Many readers have been asking for updates on the status of the America the Beautiful 5 oz Silver Bullion Coins. I responded in the comments to a prior post, but will include the latest information here as well.
According to this Numismatic News article, the coins are scheduled for striking in July, August, and September. Currently the Mint is awaiting their supply of silver blanks, expected to be delivered in July.
The over-sized bullion coins will be distributed through the US Mint’s authorized purchaser (AP) network. The authorized purchasers buy the coins in bulk quantities directly from the United States Mint and then resell them to other bullion dealers, coin dealers, and the public. This is the same distribution system used for the bullion versions of Silver Eagles, Gold Eagles, and Gold Buffalo coins.
The the new 5 ounce silver coins are classified as bullion, so they should sell for a fixed mark up to the spot price of silver. However, since this will represent the start of a brand new series and mark the first offering of 5 ounce coins from the US Mint, demand will likely be elevated, possibly driving market premiums higher. Premiums may also increase if the US Mint cannot produce the coins in sufficient numbers to meet demand or rations the available quantities, which is a distinct possibility.
The US Mint has mentioned the potential for a proof or collectible version of the America the Beautiful 5 oz silver coins, although such an offering definitely will not happen in 2010.