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March 2010 Meet Report and Contest Recap

March 2010 Meet Report

We had many beautiful models displayed again for all of us to enjoy.  We had switching contests, photo contests, and fun was had by all.  Thank you to *all* the participants who entered and put on such a good show for the rest of us;  we hope you enjoyed our deep admiration and appreciation for your sharing it with us.

Click on the links below to see the:
Model Contest - the winner in all three Model Contest categories was Bob Wirthlin, MMR!  The competition was tough - Congratulations, Bob, you earned this superb achievement.
Show and Tell  
Switching Contest
Photo Contest
Volunteers and PeopleSee photos of our new Photo Contest Chair Keith Wandry, and our new Switching Contest Chair, Steve Parks.

Click here to see the upcoming Coast Division Model Contest and Photo Contest categories for future meets

You can click on any of the thumbnails below, to see a larger photo of the absolutely gorgeous models presented at the March 2010 Meet.
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Model Contest

Our March 2010 Model Contest had another great set of displayed models, and we had one of the best turnouts in recent times. 


We had a unprecedented triple winner in all three categories at the March 2010 Model Contest (at least in my 4+ years as Coast Division Model Contest chair).  Congratulations to Bob Wirthlin, MMR, he was the winner in all three categories for March 2010.  All the more remarkable, because the quality and number of entries was among the highest we've had in several years.  Congratulations to Bob and all, for making such a wonderful show for all the rest of us.

As always, NMRA contests are not about winning, rather, they are about the fun of participating, about sharing your pride and joy in modeling with all of us (your appreciative audience), and having fun self-inspiring and self-challenging yourself.

Congratulations to our winners, and to all of our participants in the Popular Vote Model Contest for March 2010:

Category 1st Place 
2nd Place 3rd Place (tie) 3rd Place (tie)

Midland, Rockies & Western #140 - Drover's Caboose

by:  Bob Wirthlin, MMR



Burlington Northern Extended Vision Caboose #10042

in Z scale

by:  Robert Ray

Burlington Side Door Caboose #14587

by:  Kenneth Martin

Rio Grande Southern #0401

Large scale Caboose

by:  Steve Wesolowski

Freight Car

Docents Rebuilding a Boxcar

by:  Bob Wirthlin, MMR

Flatcar #64

by:  Frank Markovich

Sandy River & Rangely Lakes 24 foot Boxcars

by:  Jim Eckman




Jordan Plow #08

by:  Bob Wirthlin, MMR


Logging Work Car

by:  Frank Markovich

Colorado & Southern Outfit Car #068

by:  Kenneth Martin


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Here is an additional participant - wonderful work and well worth seeing.

Kenneth Martin's Burlington modern boxcar:  

and our Model Contest table for March 2010, a *great* turnout:    

Thank you to all who participated - we love seeing your wonderful models.

In the end, NMRA contests are not about winning, rather, they are about the fun of participating, about sharing your pride and joy in modeling, and having fun self-inspiring yourself.  We all love to see your pride and joys, and you are all winners for participating. 
Thank You to *all*, you put on a great show and inspired the rest of us.   We hope you enjoyed our admiration of your work.  

So for June 2010, bring an entry and participate!  Bring something to share, and enter for the Fun of it in the Coast Division Model Contest.
Click here to see the upcoming Model Contest categories.  :-)

Model Contest and Show and Tell Chair: John Sing
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Show and Tell   at March 2010 Coast Division Meet

At the March 2010 Meet, we had another excellent Show and Tell display.   This time, we had:

Thank you to all who brought a model for us to enjoy!   This was one of the biggest turnouts in recent times.

Bill Dwyer's amazing and beautiful Southern Pacific open-air observation car in HO:


Alvin Ho's superdetailed N scale freelance Great Northern SD40-2 and SW1200.  Alvin is 14 years old. What a great way to start out in life!  And, thank you to Alvin's father for bringing Alvin and attending our meeting.   It is Dad's like you, that are building the future for us all :-)  :



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Terry Hurley's splendid stucco mission building:


Paul Ingraham's 
Canadian Pacific Slocan Lake Barge in N scale:  


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Doug Jones's beautiful diorama and scratchbuilt structures - this was Doug's first time visit to Coast Division.  We welcome you, Doug - thank you for bringing your superb models to share with us as a guest, and we look forward to seeing you again soon:  





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Alf Modine's beautiful O scale Chicago CSL MU traction and C&NW parlor car - both submitted and judged for Achievement Program Merit Awards:



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Robert Ray's incredible Z scale scratchbuilt cabooses.  Robert designs and cuts the parts on a laser.  Now that's scratchbuilding using modern day technology!  Check it out:


Coast Division Model Contest and Show and Tell Chair: John Sing

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We had our Clinics and Model Railroad Roundtable as we do at every Coast Division meet:

1) Mark Gurries and his famous DCC clinics on DCC hardware, software, decoders, command stations, everything :-) :

Click here to see Mark Gurrie's DCC downloadable presentations at the Silicon Valley Lines web site

2)  And of course, our ever popular Model Railroad Roundtable, moderated by Jerry Littlefield

Got an idea for a clinic?   Want to see what's coming up?   Contact the Coast Division Clinics chair:    John Marshall

Thanks again to all who participated, and we look forward to seeing you at Model Contest and Show and Tell in upcoming Meets.  Bring something that you would like share - a model(s), display about your current project, a work in progress, it's up to you, as any category is always welcome for Show and Tell.   We love to see what you're up to!

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Results of the March 2010 Switching Contest :  

We had fun and games again with the March 2010 Switching Contest.  Here's a shot of 14 year Alvin Ho working the puzzle (you can tell he's having fun!):

Thanks to all who participated, it's a blast.    Remember... it's not about winning, it's about you and your switching.  You have to give it a try :-) .

The skilled winners and their competitors were as follows.  

Our winners in the Youth category:

First Place Second Place Third Place
   Nathan Mackle   (7:53)!!!   
   Alvin Ho


Our winners in the Brakeperson category (5 car problem)!

First Place Second Place Third Place
   John Ameling   (8:05)   


Our winners in the Senior Brakeperson category (6 car problem)!

First Place Second Place Third Place
Tom Crawford (3:27)
    Steve Williams (4:03)
  Dennis Stokely (6:54)


A special thanks to our new Coast Division Switching Contest Chair: Steve Parks, who keeps the Allen Fenton Timesaver switching puzzle running smoothly and staffs the TimeSaver for us.   Thx, and welcome, Steve!

What is the Timesaver ?  (click below to find out!)

It is a fun, devilish little switching puzzle devised by the late, great model railroader, John Allen

Click on  these links above to learn more about the Timesaver, about John Allen, or his world famous HO Gorre & Daphetid model railroad, which inspired an entire generation of model railroaders worldwide.   John Allen lived in Monterey, California, and was a long time member of the Coast Division until his passing in 1973.

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Results of the March 2010 Photo Contest :    (Congratulations to all who participated!)

The theme was:  "Steam Locomotives".

There were many artistic, noteworthy, and creative entries, and every one is worthy of award and mention.   Thank you to all who brought your photo to share, we all love seeing your work.  

Click on any of the thumbnails below to see a larger copy of the Photo Contest Entry.   By Popular Vote, the Photo Contest winners were:

First Place Second Place
Third Place

"Georgetown Loop Locomotives"
by Ken Lunders


  "Sierra Railroad Train" 
by David Armstrong
"Eureka & Palisade #4" 
by David Armstrong

We had many entries, all of them interesting, artistic, and just excellent.  Click on a thumbnail below to see all of our other beautiful Photo Contest entries:  


Thank you to *all* who participated.  We hope you enjoyed a few minutes of fame and the ongoing admiration, of your fellow NMRA modellers and guests.

Bring a photo to the next Meet's Photo Contest!  Click here to see the upcoming categories.   

Coast Division Photo Contest Chair:  Keith Wandry  

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Upcoming Model Contest categories:

Coast Division Model Contest categories are rotated annually according to the following schedule.

Therefore, the categories for the upcoming Coast Division Model Contest Meets are:


June 2010:       Structure, Display/Diorama, Self-Propelled Cars & Traction

September 2010:      Steam Locomotives, Diesel & Other Locomotives, Passenger Car

December 2010:      "Favorite Model" (open to any category)

March 2011:            Caboose, Freight Car, Maintenance of Way

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Results are determined by Popular Vote.  Arrive and enter early to get more votes!

  NMRA Judging is available at the Coast Division Meet to any Model Contest participant for:

- Achievement Program Merit Points
- Regional/National Contest entry preparation 'dry-run' and friendly expert advice     
- Or, just to see how you would have done (smile!)

Please contact the current Coast Division Model Contest Chair, John Sing,  or the current Achievement Program chair Kermit Paul, if you would to have your model judged at the upcoming meet.

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Upcoming Photo Contest categories:

June 2010:                             Railroad Structures

September 2010:                    Diesel

December 2010:                     Trains In The Seasons 

All photos should be matted (inexpensive, resusable mattes can be had at most art supply stores) and should be between 5x7 and 11x14 in size. Hope to see your work there!

Results are determined by Popular Vote. Bring your photos early to get the early votes.

Photo Contest Chair:
Keith Wandry  

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Volunteers and People
One of the great things about our Meets is sharing information and kibitzing about all things related to trains.   Here, Dave Falkenberg
and Stephen Williams are test-driving the new Broadway Limited N scale Alco PA-1's with sound:

Our thanks to our many Coast Division volunteers, we could not do any of this without each and every one of you.   
Volunteers -  thank you!

Thank you, Ted Stephens, who does the essential job of meeting all of us at our Meets as our Registrar: 


Our Switching Contest Chair is Steve Parks.  Here's a picture of Steve: 

Here's a picture of our Coast Division Photo Contest Chairman, Keith Wandry:  

You can see our current Coast Division Call Board by clicking here.

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The Job’s Daughters

provided the crowd-pleasing fare of Polish hot dogs, drinks, snacks and chili for lunch. Thanks a bunch as usual! 

Steve Wesolowski, our Publicity Chair (and super helper on Model Contest) recently said it well for all of us:  

"So many people happily volunteer to make our Coast Division Quarterly Meetings possible.  In appreciation, whenever you have the chance, please remember to thank someone else in our Division who in whatever way, helps to make our Coast Division Meets the success they are today."

Thank you, Steve, well said.  :-)

Invite a new friend to come to the next Meet, and see what we're all about!

See all of you at the Coast Division Meet in June 2010.  

Please note the June 2010 Coast Division Meet is on June 13, 2010, (it's *not* on June 6, 2010 to avoid conflict with another event), and note that is is at a *new* location:

Masonic Lodge
890 Church Street
Mountain View, CA  94041

Here are the directions to the meet!

See you there!

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Last updated: April 22, 2010
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