Atlanta Model Train Show March 11 - 12, 2006

The Model Train Show 2006 March 11th and 12th, 2006 Sponsored by Piedmont Division, NMRA (http://www.piedmont-div.org )
For more details, see http://www.themodeltrainshow.com
Saturday: 10 - 5 Sunday: 10 - 4 Admission: $7 per person (Get $1 off with website flyer) Kids 12 & under are FREE, Admission Good Both Days
Cobb County Civic Center Marietta, GA. Phone: (770) 528-8455
Featuring:
* Over 200 Model Railroad Vendor Tables * 5 Fully Detailed Club Layouts in Operation, including 'N' Scale, 'HO' Scale, On30, Lionel and LEGO * Model Contest - NMRA sponsored and approved * Junior Layout - let your children run the trains! * Layout Raffle - A Complete HO layout
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A model contest is not a desirable "feature". Rather it is an inhibiting factor that will invariably prevent many excellent models from being seen. Some of the best model work I have seen in my life has been at modeler meets where there is no contest. The models are exhibited as-is and in various stages of construction all the way up to complete. Some of the finest modelers in the world will not exhibit in a contest environment. Others, many of whom build better models than many of the ones seen in contests, likewise will not exhibit in a contest atmosphere. I will not exhibit my work in a contest setting, and will not bother to go see those who do. The last few national NMRA conventions I have been to where there was a model contest had miserable showings of a pitiful few models in various categories. Some exhibitors bring their models in minutes before the judging, and remove them immediately after it is finished. No one but the judges ever gets to see them. What good does that do for anyone?
Modeling is an art form, not a vehicle for competition.
If you want to compete, join a hockey team. Touting an NMRA sponsored and approved contest does not draw models and attendance, it turns both away. What you should do instead is have a model exhibit divided into two primary categories: strictly prototype models and freelance models, but with no contest and no judging. You will have more participation than with a contest. Based on my observations in this area, you will also draw better quality models to the showing. It's time to start thinking outside the box unless you want to continue to cater exclusively to the steadily declining NMRA "insider's" crowd. It is no secret that the NMRA is in trouble, or at least has fallen upon difficult times. Holding on to such antiquated and hide-bound thinking concepts, such as model contests is not going to help matters.
Froggy,
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Froggy,
I appreciate your opinion on contests. I would like to note that along with the contest, we will have a large area available for model displays as noted on our website (http://www.piedmont-div.org/trainshow/contest.html ).
Here is a quote from that same web page: "And there is also a large display area, where modelers may simply display their models without entering the contest. Come and participate, and come to look."
Our contest and model display room is open to the public for the entire show, even when the judging is taking place. We encourage people to bring in models early so that everyone gets a chance to see their work.
Many people who enter the contests are really interested in the NMRA Achievement Program. I am one of those people. This is a great part of the NMRA's education program that helps modelers learn the fine art of modeling. Whether in a contest or not, models can be evaluated (or "judged") by experienced modelers. Then you get feedback which allows you to improve your work.
If you live in the Atlanta area, I encourage you to come to one of our monthly meetings. You won't find a group of "insiders". We welcome visitors! We average 75 - 80 people each month. Each of our meetings at the Piedmont Division has a informative clinic and great fellowship. For more information, see our website at http://www.piedmont-div.org
Also, please come by the train show and bring a model to display!
Regards,
Scott Povlot
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