Lowell Quarter Ceremony, Coin Exchange and Public Forum


The United States Mint and the National Park Service will soon introduce the quarter celebrating Massachusetts’ Lowell National Historical Park. This year’s first quarter ceremony will take place at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium on Wednesday, Feb 6.

2019 Lowell National Historical Park Quarter - Reverse
Designed by Joel Iskowitz and sculpted by Phebe Hemphill, the Lowell National Historical Park quarter for Massachusetts depicts a mill girl working at a power loom with its prominent circular bobbin battery. A view of Lowell, including the Boott Mill clock tower is seen through the window. The coin marks the first release this year and the forty-sixth in the U.S. Mint’s America the Beautiful Quarter® Program.

Like previous ceremonies, two (pre and post) events support the quarter’s official release. First, a U.S. Mint-hosted coin forum will take place the evening before the ceremony, and then the traditional coin exchange immediately follows the launch. Both are free and open to all ages.

Lowell quarters will enter circulation on Monday, Feb. 4, but it could be months or years before they become a common sight in regular commerce because Federal Reserve Banks distribute coins to financial institutions without regard to their designs. Hence, the quarter ceremony and exchange are an early way to get this first of the  five 2019-dated quarters. The U.S. Mint offers another by selling them in rolls and bags.

Lowell Quarter Launch Ceremony – Time and Location

Quarter ceremonies are special occasions for locals, coin collectors, and children. Attendees will hear historical background about the park, local entertainers will perform, and official dignitaries will unveil the new coin and give a free one to school-aged children. Expected VIPs and speakers at this event include:

  • Marc Landry, Acting Associate Director for the Numismatic and Bullion Directorate, United States Mint
  • Eileen Donoghue, Lowell City Manager
  • Jacqueline Moloney, Chancellor, University of Massachusetts Lowell
  • Celeste Bernardo, Superintendent, Lowell National Historical Park

The Lowell High School JROTC Honor Guard, Senior Class President, band, and chorus will partake in the ceremony as well.

The quarter ceremony’s time and location details follow.

Date: Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019
Time: 10 a.m. EST
Lowell Memorial Auditorium
50 E Merrimack St.
Lowell, MA

Note – in the event of a statewide snow emergency, the launch will be held on Thursday, February 7, at 10 a.m. (same location).

The following map shows the Lowell Memorial Auditorium location:


Coin Exchange

The coin exchange begins immediately after the quarter ceremony. Participants can swap cash for $10 rolls of the new coins. A one-roll ($10) minimum and a 10-roll ($100) maximum is common.

Coin Forum Evening Prior to Quarter Ceremony

The United States Mint will also host a coin forum for the public on the evening before the ceremony. This free event provides insight about the role of U.S. Mint and allows guests to express their views on the Mint’s products. Coin forums tend to last around an hour.

Here are the coin forum’s time and location details:

Date: Tuesday, February 5, 2019
Time: 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. EST
Lowell National Historical Park Visitor Center Theater
246 Market St
Lowell, MA

The following map shows the location of the park.


U.S. Mint-Branded Rolls and Bags of Quarters & Other Quarter Collectibles

On Monday, Feb. 4, starting at noon EST, the U.S. Mint will begin selling Lowell quarters to the public. Product options include 40-coin rolls, 2-roll sets, 3-roll sets, and 100-coin bags at prices ranging from $18.95 to $46.95. They will be available for order online at catalog.usmint.gov. These product releases will also be covered here on CoinNews.

At the start of this year, on Jan. 5, the U.S. Mint released collector proof versions of all five 2019 quarters for $15.95. These coins exhibit frosted designs and mirror-like backgrounds.

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I realize that the quality of designs for the America the Beautiful quarters vary quite a bit. While the design for the Lowoll National Historical Park is quite good, I feel that the artist could have spent a little more time in rendering the mill girls hair. For some reason the hair reminds me of someting you would find on a Raggedy Anns Doll.
On the brite side, in forty years, after some good honest wear on the quarter, the girls hair should look very natural. Its just a matter of time.