Elliott Serrano, for Redeye
September 12, 2013
It looks like 2013 is turning out to be a pretty good year for Steven Sansweet. First he was selected as one of the Hottest Geek Guys of 2013, and now Sansweet's "Rancho Obi-Wan" has been recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records!
As the Head of Fan Relations at Lucasfilm, and the accepted authority on all Star Wars collectibles, Sansweet has put together what is every SW fan's wildest dream come true. In fact, his collection is so big, he was able to open his own museum to feature it.
"Rancho Obi-Wan" opened in 1998 and over the years has become a destination for Star Wars fans everywhere. (Yours truly can't wait until he gets chance to walk through it's halls.) This week the museum was honored by the Guinness Book of World Records as the world's largest collection of Star Wars memorabilia. Check out the following announcement:
Rancho Obi-Wan, a Northern California non-profit museum, has officially been recognized by GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS as housing the “Largest Collection of Star Wars Memorabilia” in the galaxy. Steve Sansweet, the collection's owner, has amassed more than 300,000 unique Star Wars items since 1977. The just-released GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS 2014 Edition features an amazing two-page photograph of part of the collection.
“I’m delighted with the recognition from GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS, which for years has been the authority in these matters,” said Sansweet, president and CEO of Rancho Obi-Wan and Fan Relations Adviser for Lucasfilm Ltd. “We were really excited to work with them. Preparing the photo shoot set a record in my book for one of the most fun-filled days ever at the museum. We were especially happy to have Craig Glenday, editor-in-chief of GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS, with us to personally oversee the shoot. We kept adding so many great items that we don't even know how many individual ones can be counted in the photo.”
Sansweet started his Star Wars collection before the movie even premiered, plucking his first piece, a 20th Century Fox/Lucasfilm promotional booklet, from the wastebasket of a colleague at The Wall Street Journal. As a born collector who loves science fiction, Sansweet naturally picked up anything related to Star Wars, and over the course of time the collection grew to enormous proportions.
In 1998 Sansweet purchased a former chicken ranch on the outskirts of Petaluma, California with a large-enough space to store the collection, and named his new home Rancho Obi-Wan. Today Rancho Obi-Wan is a 9,000 square-foot non-profit museum. Star Wars fans can experience the magic of Rancho Obi-Wan first-hand by scheduling a tour, personally guided by Sansweet. For more information please visit www.RanchoObiWan.org.
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