Also wins the lottery for final coin of the 2013
San Francisco, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 01/14/2013 -- After spending four full days outside of the Royal Australian Mint, Thirteen-year-old Harley Russo will finally collect the first coin of 2013.
The Sydney teenager was given an extra surprise for his patience when he won a lottery at the mint to strike the last coin of 2012.
''I'm going to hang them both up,'' he said. ''I've been collecting for three years. I've got decimal coins and silver proof coins - there's more than 50 in the collection, all from Australia.''
Both Harley and his family had considered making the trip for the traditional New Year's Day coin strike a few years back. They ultimately decided to wait for 2013, Canberra's centenary year.
This year marks the bicentenary of the countries first coins, the holey dollar and dump, which will be added to the design theme for the 2013 coin.
The initial holey dollars and dumps were struck in 1813, and were made from Spanish eight reale coins, in order to give NSW a stable currency to be taken across the seas by both merchants and seafarers.
''It's something special to do on New Year's Day,'' communications manager Michelle Nakamara said. Adding, ''There isn't always a lot for families to do on New Year's Day and the kids love it.
''It's $3, it's cheap, it's something to do and they get a certificate that's numbered, so it's a special memory.''
Nakamara stated that the Russo family, who found their place outside the mint since December 28, recorded the record for the longest anyone has waited for a first coin.
Harley's collection is three years in the making, as mother Carolyn gave him some old coins that she had. They have tracked some more coins down from family. His favorite hologram coin he brought on another visit to the mint. He stated that the 2013 coin was “special” and that he felt very lucky.
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