Ozarks Life: Jim LePage’s passion for beer cans fills his basement
Jim has more than 2,000 beer cans in his collection.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - Earlier this week, the beer can turned 87-years-old. Springfield has one of our area’s most passionate collectors.
If the saying is true that success comes in cans, then a basement in south Springfield is quite successful.
“I’ve told my wife if I get hit by a beer truck one day,” Jim LePage said, “I told her how to disperse the collection.”
Jim’s life is spent on the can... Well, you know what I mean... He has over 2,000 different types of cans on display
“In the early-to-mid ‘70s it was a very popular hobby,” LePage said.
Jim has steel cans, aluminum cans, aluminum bottles, flat tops, tab tops, and even something that was never sold on display in his basement.
Jim’s oldest, a cone top that came out in October of 1935. He’s got sports series, mistakes, and numerous sets.
The most popular question Jim gets is, ‘hey, you got any Billy Beer?’
“I say, ‘yeah, it’s sitting right there. It’s worthless. It’s sitting right next to a can that’s worth several hundreds of dollars,” LePage joked.
“I’ve made great friends all across the United States in the world. It’s a lot of fun,” LePage said.
“I’ve got about six,” Jim’s son, Theron LePage said in 2010, “and he’s got like 2,000.”
“People will probably look at this and go, ‘oh yeah, teach your first grader about beer cans.,” LePage said. “It’s not about the consumption of (beer) it’s the history of (beer cans).”
Speaking of history, today that first-grader, Theron LePage, is in his first year at Missouri State. As for his can collection, it went the way of the ring pull tab.
“I count that as a father failure,” LePage joked. “I still have a section of my area where I have the cans I gave them just in case.”
“I still really enjoy it, LePage adds. “And I don’t see perceive the collection downsizing, just yet.”
You can email Jim at email@example.com if you have some cans you’re looking to get rid of, or if you’re interested in joining the Springfield Chapter of the Brewery Collectables Club of America. Their next meeting is on April 2 at Billiards of Springfield.
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