Marble Mania

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Marble Mania at the Hilltop shopping centre, Richmond, San Francisco in May 1991 was the BIGGEST and best exhibition of marbles there has ever been. It lasted for 3 weeks from 4th May to 26th May 1991 and it had it all - marbles of all kinds, photographs, marbles memorabilia and marble games that were played by both young and old alike.

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Cover of the main leaflett

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In February 1991 I received a phone call from Lance Lew, of the Hill Top Shopping Centre in San Francisco. He asked about marbles in general and about the game we play in England. He said it seems that there are no marble tournament in the USA if you are over 14 years of age. We agreed to send the current champion and the winner of the previous year, over to give a demonstration of how to play the game.

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Ro Purser, Steve Maslash, Shantidevi and David Salazar play marbles

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These pictures show the marble challenge match in progress.

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Lance Lew presents the Hilltop Challenge Cup to Darren Ray.

The cup was renamed the Roger Howdyshell Memorial Cup after the owner of Marble King who supplied all the marbles used at ‘Marble Mania’. Roger who was to be present at the event had died on Thursday April 22nd just a few weeks before it took place.

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Over the first weekend we were all invited to view something special, out in the car park of the Mall we were shown this magnificent VW Beetle, covered with all sorts of marbles. The guy who owned it worked for NASA or some other space agency and all the marbles were attached with the glue that held the tiles on the space shuttle ready of re-entry to earth's atmosphere.