Bookmark and Share

Archive News Story

DCNR #6 - Daily Convention News Report

Today was the "big finish" to our annual convention with the free exhibits open to the public, a Trading Hall open to the public at a nominal fee, and the closing reception and banquet at the host hotel. This report was prepared by Mike Mottler (RM 12394).

"I love it when a plan comes together" was the wrap-up tag line for "The A Team" TV series of years ago, and it aptly applies to our 2008 Convention Team. We enrolled a record number (54) of new members during this convention, and public participation in the Train Show on Saturday also established a new record - due in part to favorable news media coverage in THE BUFFALO NEWS, BUFFALO BUSINESS FIRST, WNED-AM Radio (NPR), TV/7 (ABC), TV/4 (NBC), and other media - including THE BOSTON GLOBE.

Stellar attractions had crowd-drawing power in themselves: the Lionel company layout was on display and in operation Wednesday through Saturday in the middle of the hotel lobby. This Christmas-theme layout is regularly presented in NYC Grand Central Terminal during the holiday season and viewed there by about half-million visitors annually. It was a "Golly Gee Whiz!" focus of attraction to visitors, especially families with children.

On Thursday through Saturday, Lionel's display of new products and the impressive modular layout of our friends in the Pittsburgh Independent High-Railers Club were also open to visitors who dropped by the host hotel.

The Train Show on Saturday was packed with both members and the public, and a steady steam of train stuff went out the door. I found an item I wanted for my layout, but by the time I got to that table the last one of its kind was sold to another shopper who got there first. There's a lesson to be learned in there somewhere!

The Saturday evening banquet is always a great place to greet old friends and make new ones. The silent auction contained many unique products, and members cruised the auction tables for items that "spoke" to them. One of the eight persons at my table won the coveted BANQUET CAR - a NYC gondola embellished with grafitti and with containers on board.