Here's another article (this time from the Orlanda Sentinel) about the coin which was tossed to open tonight's Super Bowl
50. The article has a nice image gallery, so be sure to check it out online. -Editor
Forget about quarterbacks Cam Newton or Peyton Manning. The star of Sunday's Super Bowl 50 will be from Central Florida.
For approximately 1.5 seconds, viewers in 117 countries will watch a shiny round object born on Riverside Drive in Melbourne rotate
through the air.
"It gives me goosebumps," Michael Kott said.
He owns the Highland Mint, which produced the official coin of Super Bowl 50. Tossing a metal object to determine which football team
gets to have the ball first may not seem like a big deal.
But this is the Super Bowl. Everything is a big deal, especially if it can be reproduced, packaged and sold for $99.99.
Kott expects this year's limited-edition run of 10,000 coins to sell out, especially if the Denver Broncos beat the Carolina
Panthers and the 39-year-old Manning rides triumphantly into the sunset. The first 100 coins were shipped to San Francisco last week for
NFL honchos to toss around.
Kott bought the company in 1993 and started pursuing licensing deals. Now 150 employees crank out commemorative coins, ornaments,
photos, cards and other collectibles for every major sport and more than 100 colleges.
The cheapest item is an $8.99 keychain. The most expensive is the $1,500 collection of all 50 Super Bowl coins.
Highland started producing them with Super Bowl XXVII. Getting the first one from the drawing board to the 50-yard-line is an
ultra-high-priority job for Highland.
Sculptor Phylis Hamilton at Highland Mint
It begins even before the final two teams are known. Artwork of the Super Bowl's Vince Lombardi Trophy with a "50" was
carved into a plaster disk. Logos of the Broncos and Panthers were added after they won their conference championship games two weeks
That disk is put on a contraption that re-carves the artwork onto a disk that's one-ninth the size.
"It's like copying a key," Kott said as he guides visitors through the warehouse.
The air smells like cardboard and thumps with the sound of all sorts of machinery. Silver is loaded in 1,700-degree furnaces and comes
out a glowing liquid at the bottom.
It's poured into cylinders, cooled, flattened, rolled and cut into 1-1/2-inch circles. The coins get a 30-minute wash in a special
mixture, are dried in a spin machine and then fed by hand into a press.
The die comes down, imprints the artwork and you have a pure silver coin.
The coins are whisked to a company in Rhode Island that adds the gold plating. Within 24 hours, the coins are back at Highland, where
they are numbered, put in their fancy packaging and boxed for shipping.
At least the Sentinel) got the word "die" correct. But about Kott's purchase of the company in 1993 - be sure to
check out the next article from Bloomberg BusinessWeek. -Editor
To read the complete article, see:
Super Bowl 50 coin toss begins in
Central Florida (www.orlandosentinel.com/sports/os-super-bowl-coin-highland-mint-0207-20160206-story.html)
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
HIGHLAND MINT STRIKES SUPER BOWL 50 COINS
Wayne Homren, Editor
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