2011 State-Fish Art® Stamp Error

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Fish ArtBrooklyn Center, MN -The 2011 State-Fish Art® (SFA) Art of Conservation stamp was released during the 13th annual SFA Expo at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center in Athens, Texas. The young artist honored was Justas Varpucanskis, a talented 7th grader from Illinois. Last week, Lake Minnetonka Stamp Club member, Dick Westerling, visited Wildlife Forever’s headquarters and asked, “Can you spot the error on this stamp?” Staff couldn’t.

No “inverted Jenny” style jumping bass … no missing colors like Day’s Folly…nothing unusual that we could see. But Westerling had noticed it; in his hand he held a stamp with a blank left margin. The SFA stamps read WILDLIFE FOREVER up the left margin. His stamp did not. Wow, a true SFA stamp error!

Wildlife Forever pulled the stamps off the market to assess the situation. A few stamps were awarded in Texas at the 2011 SFA EXPO and limited sales may have distributed some of the error stamps without anyone’s knowledge.

Through an inventory Wildlife Forever discovered only 1,250 error stamps with the blank left margin out of the 25,000 annual stamps. The sheets of 20 normally sell for $100. Wildlife Forever realized in this day and age of off-set printing, actual stamp errors are really errors made by man not machine. Someone missed the copy deletion in the proof stage.

Not wanting to take unfair advantage of the collector for a printing mistake, Wildlife Forever sought counsel from stamp industry leaders and came up with a plan. The single “error” stamp with the $5 denomination will sell for $10 each. The horizontal or vertical pair with an “error” stamp will sell for $15. The block of 4 with an “error” stamp will sell for $25. The sheet of 20 stamps, with the lower left “error”, will still be available at $100 a sheet.

According to Karen Hollingsworth, State-Fish Art® Manager; “This way everyone can collect the fish “error” stamp of 2011. It will only cost collectors a small premium and everyone’s purchase will support the State-Fish Art program.”

“This year’s SFA stamp is truly a mistake stamp. Very few were printed,” said Douglas Grann, President & CEO of Wildlife Forever. “Our goal is to reach philatelic collectors and angling enthusiasts to expand our conservation education efforts across the country. The Art of Conservation stamp is not only a proud part of our SFA heritage; it is an important component to the financial support of our free youth education program.”

Wildlife Forever believes conservation education is the key that will ultimately determine the very future of our country’s fish and wildlife heritage. This glimpse of the creative talents of America’s youth provides hope for tomorrow. Shijun Munns of Shijun Art Studio in Georgia comments, “I would like to thank you for providing an essential outlet for all these young creative spirits to discover not only the importance of conservation but also…express their lives and their world through the joy of art.”

The State-Fish Art® Contest is heading into its 14th year teaching aquatic education through the arts to the children of America. The program is rapidly growing and has support across all 50 states and internationally. See: www.StateFishArt.org for The Art of Conservation.

Order your Art of Conservation stamps by calling 763-253-0222 or on-line at: www.wildlifeforever.org/contest/conservation

Courtesy of Jim Shepard and The Fishing Wire

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