You are currently viewing 371. The Texas Pipe Show

371. The Texas Pipe Show

 What a show! I don’t have attendance figures, but this seemed to be at least three times bigger than last year’s show. I set up a Peterson “presentation table” this year with books, several pipes from among my “companions,” and my 1953 Sky-Riter with its new Pete Geek tatts. Fellow Pete Geek Gary Hamilton shared a table with me, bringing a number of the special Pete Geek Christmas tampers which he’s planning to release through PPN in a few weeks.

The Boss (left) and Gary Hamilton (right) at the Peterson Presentation table

Pete-spotting, anyone? I see one and maybe two that I wish I’d seen at the show.

 

There were a number of Certified Pete Geeks in attendance this year:

James Foster
Gary Hamilton
Mark Dominguez of Lone Star Briars
Mark Berman
Colvin Stephens
Chris Tarman
Mike Austin
Bryan Olen
Stephen Mawby
Alvin Miller, Austin Pipe Club Treasurer
Unknown Pete Geek w/Irish tweed vest
Unknown Pete Geek Biker

I didn’t get everyone’s names, but I believe I got almost everyone’s photos. If you can identify a few of those seen below, please drop me a line so I can send them their CPG.

James Foster, CPG, setting out prizes for the raffle

Hats off to James Foster, CPG. While I know it took a big crew to organize and execute the show, James has always been my contact, probably because he’s a fellow Pete lover.  He was there to work and serve all day, rarely stopping in one place for more than a minute or two. I’m sure you know him from his writing for Pipes Magazine, but his efforts on behalf of the pipe community are sufficient that this year he was awarded the Master of Pipes at the Chicago Pipe Show.

Julie and Ken Byron of Ken Byron Ventures

If you haven’t heard of the incredible tobaccos Ken Byron blends up, take it from me: he’s a wizard of the first order. I bought a bag of Venture 23, a special VaPer he blended for the show. I smoked it continuously through the day and strongly recommend it. If you love the old McClelland blends, you’ll like what Ken does.

Gary Hamilton

Gary sold more tampers than I did books, which isn’t surprising as these are gorgeous. He debuted a short, chunky one I especially like (being somewhat short and chunky myself).

Gary also brought one of his latest project pipes, a Peterson System 302GHABC—that’s 302 (shape) and “Gary Hamilton [GH], Army mount [A] Tapered [B] Short [C]” stem.

 

Stephen Mawby, CPG, Customer Service Manager, SPC

Stephen Mawby at SPC, who routinely helps me with Peterson queries, also flew in from South Carolina and set up with some jaw-dropping high-end artisan pipes. This was Smokingpipe’s first time at the show, and at the end of the day Stephen told me sales had been good enough that he’d be back at the show next year! You can’t see it behind his fist, but Stephen smoked his Pete 01 DeLuxe pretty much from sunup to sunset at the show.

 

Chris Tarman, CPG

Chris Tarman, CPG made it to the show, but not before spending the previous day at Texas artisan Trey Rice’s shop for the pipemaker’s workshop. I meant to get photos of both pipes Chris adopted from Trey, but time slipped away. In the meantime, check out Trey’s incredible work:

Nope, he didn’t bring this dublin to the show. He sold it in Vegas
(lucky for me).

You’ll notice I didn’t include a photo of Trey. This was for two reasons: first, he’s far too good looking and I don’t want the hate mail. Second, he’s far too talented and I don’t want the hate mail at not bringing away one or more of his great pipes. However, you can contact him yourself, either at Instagram or through his website.

William Haggerty (left) and one of our Tobacco Cabana hosts

I only got out from behind my table for a few minutes from 9:30 until I left in the late afternoon, so I didn’t get the name of the Tobacco Cabana gent on the right in the photo above, but he and several other TC folk were also working really hard Saturday. Bill Haggerty is the Laudisi rep for the Midwest, and as you can see he brought a gorgeous spread of Petes.

Mark Dominguez, CPG

I got away from my table for just long enough to say “Hey!” to Mark Dominguez of Lone Star Briar Works, one of the first subscribers to PPN. He had two fantastic dublins and I loved them both.

If Mark sees this blog and if he writes to me and if he still has one of them—whoa. I’m in trouble. In the meantime, check out his Facebook page or drop him a line there. His pipes are everything I believe a genuine Texas pipe should be: authentic, well-crafted, affordable.

Colvin Stephens, CPG

I got to talk to Colvin for a long time—maybe 5-7 minutes!!—longer than most of the folks I saw. He’s an avid collector not only of Petes but of other marques of pipe, reels and guns. He’s also a lifelong train engineer. How cool is that? I didn’t get a photo, but later in the day Colvin was smoking his Peterson House Pipe. As you can imagine, it fit him just fine!

Bryan Olen, CPG and Kim Metcalf Olen

Walking by their table, I had to stop and introduce myself. Bryan was smoking a fantastic Peterson Aran 150s (and I believe the 150 looks best with that saddle P-Lip, far better than the chonky “not a taper not a saddle” stem it currently sports) and Kim, well she had on a CORPS T-Shirt (Conclave of Richmond Pipe Smokers). CORPS will be celebrating their 40th anniversary next year and I’m hoping we’ll be there to honor its founder and one of my gurus, Doctor of Pipes Linwood Hines. Kim used to attend CORPS meetings with her dad, Linwood tells me, and if brought a Pete with her to the Texas show, she needs to let me know—her CPG awaits!

 

Mike Austin, CPG

Like Marie and I, Mike’s an Okie, and he drove down from OKC for the show. I don’t know what all he picked up to take back, but he did stop at the table long enough to write a post for today’s blog, as did Armen the Armenian, Chas. Mundungus, Gary Hamilton and an unidentified typist. Armen, if you read this, post a comment to receive your Blogger Certified Pete Geek certificate!

The Unknown Pete Geek

I didn’t ask his name, but this gent (obviously a rock star) not only picked up a new Peterson at the Tobacco Cabana table from Bill Haggerty, but he’s sporting his Irish tweed. And if that isn’t enough, check out the incredible Irish triquetra watch fob!

And of course on the right is the Pipestud himself, Steve Fallon

If you know him, or if you are him, do post a comment below. You’ve got a Certified Pete Geek certificate waiting for you.

 

Alvin Miller, Austin Pipe Club Treasurer

I didn’t get to talk to Alvin, but as you can see he’s sporting the “Pete Geek” Chicago 2023 button. He’s also the treasurer of the Austin Pipe Club and so has a big hand in making sure the Texas Pipe Show is fiscally secure—you may not know it, but pipe shows have a really, really difficult time raising money to sustain their shows, and more often the not the reason a show collapses and disappears is because there wasn’t someone like Alvin behind the scenes to insure that the funds are adequate and secured to make the show happen.

Pete Geek Biker

Two affable Texas bikers came by the table, but I only got a photo of one gentleman! As you can see, he’s a Peterson man, with an Irish sun cross patch, a Lord of the Rings patch, and smoking a handsome 2023 SPD Sherlock Holmes Strand. If he sees this, I hope he’ll apologize for me to his friend for failing to get his picture, as it was Veteran’s Day and I believe he served in the 101st Airborne. Once again—please leave a comment if you recognize this Pete Geek or if you are this Pete Geek!

This guy camped on the back of the PPN typewriter for about an hour,
offering to coat the bowl of anyone’s pipe with honey for a small fee.

 

 

THE CORNER OF PETERSON & DUBLIN

Gary Tarman—Chris Tarman’s doppelganger—sent photos from Colorado Springs of the intersection of Peterson & Dublin. Incredible, right?

 

THE XL5BC PARADE CONTINUES . . .

Harald Stocklmair, CPG

 

Stephen Wilson, CPG

Chris Tarman, CPG

 

Kevn Cavanagh, CPG

 

Carol Padilla, CPG

 

Next Week:
The Blog’s 10th Anniversary Pete Geek Events Begin!

 

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Chris Tarman, CPG
Chris Tarman, CPG
6 months ago

It was great to see you and Marie (and Gary Hamilton) at the show. Wow! I didn’t realize there were so many Pete Geeks there! I talked to Mike Austin for quite awhile (he was easy to spot, with the Peterson T-shirt), and to Colvin just a little bit. It was a fun little show, and well worth the drive from Colorado Springs!

Christopher LAUER
Christopher LAUER
6 months ago

One of these days I hope to make it to one of these shows but for now I will have to enjoy them by proxy. Thanks for sharing the fun. These wonderful photos take my mind off the 32″ inches of snow I got to move this week and the sub zero temperatures (-15 at the moment) we are enjoying. I would also like to take this opportunity to wish all my fellow Pete Geeks a Happy Thanksgiving.

Marlowe
Marlowe
6 months ago

Wow Chris. I thought I was the furthest north – or was before we moved. Where are you?

Christopher LAUER
Christopher LAUER
6 months ago
Reply to  Marlowe

I live in Palmer, Alaska…at least for the next 6 months when I retire and head to Maine.

Nevaditude
Nevaditude
6 months ago

What a great show! I wish I had been there. Look like all were happy! Clearly I too need to plan for a road trip next November. Happy to hear show is larger than last year, hope it continue to grow! Thanks Mark for all the CPG insight, faces & names AND more of the gorgeous XLBC pipes. Mine has become a favorite smoke.

Nevaditude
Nevaditude
6 months ago
Reply to  Nevaditude

ALSO- a Happy Thanksgiving this week to all CPG’s in USA. And globally,.. sending an ‘attitude of gratitude from Nevaditude’ to all the Pete Geeks that I learn much from throughout the world in these perilous times. Cling tight to Truth & to those you love… be well…

Matt -Sargon530
Matt -Sargon530
6 months ago

Another fantastic post! So many great pipes and accessories on display Thanks Mark.

Erik R
Erik R
6 months ago

Great write up Mark, looks like a fun time. I see Gary Hamilton had what looks like Dracula themed tampers in front of him, like the ones we chatted about, very cool. Thanks for doing this blog, it definitely is something I look forward to every Sunday morning.

Gary Hamilton
Gary Hamilton
6 months ago
Reply to  Erik R

Hey Erik, thanks for noticing the tampers! Yes, I did a few Dracula themed tampers as a trial run, more about them later. As Mark mentioned in this post, I’m working on a limited run of tampers that I’m calling the Pete Geek Zippo Companion Tamper. These are basically a red & black color scheme to companion with the Pete Geek Zippo lighter. The tampers feature a “foot” made from Morta and the top has the inset aluminum medallion stamped “Pete Geek”. More to come on these soon, as I’m desperately trying to get the two shop Leprechauns (Finnegan &… Read more »

Erik R
Erik R
6 months ago
Reply to  Gary Hamilton

Awesome Gary! I am all in for a Dracula! It’s definitely my favorite non-traditional Pete finish.

Gary Hamilton
Gary Hamilton
6 months ago
Reply to  Erik R

Erik, you are first on the list for a Dracula!

Al Jones
Al Jones
6 months ago

Wow, that looks like a great show! I was excited to read you will be attending the 2024 CORPS show in Richmond. I’ll be there as well. I’ll finally be able to get my book signed!

Richard Roberts
Richard Roberts
6 months ago

Mark- my thanks for this post, the photos add so much more than a simple account. Like your subscriber Christopher Lauer I can only watch from afar, wishing to be there but able to do so. Living in the UK I am dismayed by the unfamiliarity of the smoking public with the ‘gentle art’ of pipe smoking. On one recent occasion I lit up in one of the very few public places where such is permitted, only to have a stranger stop in the street stop and say, ‘ is that a tobacco pipe, well, I haven’t seen one in… Read more »

Bob Cuccaro/TLIP
Bob Cuccaro/TLIP
6 months ago

Love seeing shows hit across the US!

Redcoat’s Return
Redcoat’s Return
6 months ago

Woweee! ??That was a great show indeed ??Like…who is who…in the pipe community…certainly for Pete Geeks??????????? The USA Pipe shows are huge and full of beautiful things and great folks too…the best in the World ?? Thank you for taking us with you…letting us to see whats going on there????

Last edited 6 months ago by Redcoat’s Return
Marlowe
Marlowe
6 months ago

Wonderful photos Mark. I really hope I can make it to one of these shows some time. As for the bee photo you inquired about: This may not be the forum for horror stories and the squeamish. Without other photos I can’t be 100% sure but it looks to me very much like a drone honeybee (a male) which has recently mated with a queen (done in flight outside the hive) following which his reproductive parts are ripped from his abdomen (the bit you can see at the rear) and he generally plummets to his death. If this is the… Read more »

Last edited 6 months ago by Marlowe
Gary Hamilton
Gary Hamilton
6 months ago

Wow!!! The Texas Pipe Show was super fun this year, and the weather was fantastic for the event. Kudos to the Texas pipe clubs, and the Tobacco Cabana, for coordinating the event! We all had a great time, and it was really fun meeting the “Pete Geeks” that were able to attend. I was pleased to see CPG Chris Tarman in attendance (along with his alter ego, Gary). Wow Chris, that’s CPG dedication to make the drive from Colorado Springs! It was a good time enjoyed by all, while Mark & Marie entertained the attendee’s with everything “historical” about K&P.… Read more »

Chris Tarman, CPG
Chris Tarman, CPG
6 months ago
Reply to  Gary Hamilton

It’s worth the drive, especially since Robert Vacher and I (and, later, Nate King) stayed with our friend Isaac Jaffe, who lives a bit NW of the Dallas/Ft. Worth area. It’s the second time I’ve made it to the show. I missed last year, but was there in 2021 (my first post-Covid show).

Gary Hamilton
Gary Hamilton
6 months ago

Chris, I’m so glad you were there, it was really great to see you again! I suppose our next “meet-up” will be in about six months at the CPCC extravaganza! That is unless I get the urge to make a trip to the Denver area to revisit my old haunt at Edwards Pipe & Tobacco shop in Englewood…

John Schantz
John Schantz
6 months ago

Great photos, good to see all the faces of familiar “Pete Geeks” and their wares.

P.S. Mark, Colvin Stephens is sporting an Ardor Metora pipe in the picture. Your caption fooled me, I was looking for a Pete House pipe?

John Schantz
John Schantz
6 months ago
Reply to  John Schantz

Oops, Ardor Meteora.

Terry Carpenter
Terry Carpenter
6 months ago

Great article, Mark, as usual. Trease and I seriously considered making the drive to be at the show this year, but, you know, life happens. We’ll plan better for next year. Here’s hoping to see you and Marie in Chicago next year, and in Richmond. The CORPS show has always been one of my favorites. It’s big enough present a varied selection of wares, but small enough to still leave time for visiting old friends, and meeting new ones. By the way, I’m still pondering that article for the blog we talked about in Chicago this year. Someday the muse… Read more »

Mike Austin, CPG
Mike Austin, CPG
6 months ago

Mark it was great to meet you and Marie for the first time.
The Texas Show is really coming together.
I bought one of Gary’s new tampers that matched my Pete Geek lighter, nice pair.
Enjoyed meeting Chris Tarman fellow Pete Geek.
It was worth the Drive from OKC I had the best time that day, just a long one going back home.

Gary Hamilton
Gary Hamilton
6 months ago

Hey Mike, I’m thrilled that you like the tamper to companion with the PG Zippo, you just made my day!

Chris Tarman, CPG
Chris Tarman, CPG
6 months ago

I enjoyed meeting and chatting with you too, Mike!

Mark Domingues
Mark Domingues
6 months ago

Sorry Mark, both Dublins were bought at the show!?

Pipestud
6 months ago

Count me in for a Geek award… or maybe, Oldest Pipe Smoker At The Show Award!

Scott Forrest
Scott Forrest
6 months ago

Mark, your wonderful description of the show makes me wish I still lived in College Station so I could make the drive and meet you all.

Rick Myerscough
Rick Myerscough
6 months ago

Looked like a fun time… Thanks for sharing…
Blessings,
Rick

Jonathon
6 months ago

Saw your table on the Pipes Tobacco and Whisky YT recap of the show, the Smith Corona got my attention. I’ve been on the hunt for a typewriter for several months.

Jonathan Jenkins
Jonathan Jenkins
6 months ago

I’m looking to buy a pipe for my dad and he asked specifically for a flat bottom pipe that I believe was on the banner of your site at one time. I have a photo. Could you possibly tell me what pipe it is and where I can buy it if I provide the photo? Any help is appreciated