Richmond's toonie designer glows with pride!

The glow-in-the dark toonie - one of a set minted specially to mark Canada's 150th birthday was released into circulation in March.

But such is the coin's popularity, its designer, Richmond born and raised Dr. Timothy Hsia, has yet to come across one in general use.

"It's kind of funny that I actually haven't seen it yet out there; friends and family across the country have though and have been sending me pictures of it.  The winning design, called "Dance of the Spirits" was chosen last year (first by a panel and then via a public vote) from thousands of entries into the Royal Canadian Mint's 150th birthday competition.

The two-tone glow-in-the-dark version has broken new ground for coins across the globe, with the Northern Lights twinkling when the room goes dark.

Hsia, who credited his fellow finalist, brother Stephen for his part in the winning creation, said he had no idea the Mint was going to make a glow-in-the-dark version of the coin, but it was a pleasant surprise.

According the the Royal Canadian Mint, 3 million of the glow-in-the-dark coins are in circulation. The technology being used is a new, high speed, pad printed colouring process for circulation coins.  The coins were coloured using... an new ink formulation containing luminescent material.

As part of the winning prize, Hsia will be hosting an official coin exchange on Friday, July 7th  from noon to 5pm at Aberdeen Centre, where people can exchange their 'old' coins for new toonies.

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