Weather Forecast


Thousands flock to Treasure Island to see 'Pawn Stars'

Nearly 2,000 pawn-enthused fans flocked to the Event Center at Treasure Island Resort & Casino despite snow-blanketed highways Sunday.

The commotion revolved around the History Channel's "Pawn Stars," several of whom graced the local stage during their debut tour.

The dealmakers of the show, including the Harrison clan of Rick, Corey and Chumlee, answered questions and demonstrated their expertise at offering money for hundreds of treasures and gems.

Randy Ernst of Hastings sat with Chumlee as he pondered over some rare Hamm's Beer collectibles.

Although an offer was made, Ernst decided he would retain his keepsakes because the undisclosed bid was not enough.

"It was a fun experience," Ernst said, "just meeting the guys and being a part of the event."

Ernst did not leave empty handed either. His brother recently met Chumlee at the Harrisons' third-generation Gold & Silver Pawn Shop on the outskirts of Las Vegas.

"The two got a picture taken and Chumlee was not able to sign it then," Ernst said with a grin. "But he said he would sign it today."

After reviewing at least 600 chosen collectibles, antiques and valuables, the "Pawn Stars" purchased collections totaling easily reached into the tens of thousands. A set a poker chips cashed in a hefty $7,000, and a pair of oriental rugs brought in $3,500.

The stars will tour the country, making deals and steals on items for the next couple of weeks. "Pawn Stars" airs at 9 p.m. Central Time Mondays.

Stacy Bengs-Silverberg

Stacy Bengs has been a photojournalist at the Red Wing Republican Eagle since 2010. She holds a bachelors degree in journalism and art from the University of Minnesota.

(651) 301-7880