South Mountain Division
Mid-East Region – National Model Railroad Association
Draft Meeting Minutes – December 8, 2018
Division members met at Frank Benenati’s home. 15 or so were present. After viewing the layout and socializing, Superintendent Alex Polimeni called the business meeting to order.
Reports: Note that the order of the reports has been adjusted to conform to their order during recent meetings.
18.12-1 Paymaster’s Report: As the Paymaster was not present, there was no report.
18.12-2 Clerk’s Report (Meeting Minutes): Clerk Harvey Heyser summarized the draft minutes. There was general agreement that item #18.10-7 Change of date and/or time of SMD meetings should be corrected as follows: “There was discussion but no agreement to change the meeting start time. The social portion of the meetings will continue to start at 2 p.m. The Superintendent will call the business portion of the meeting to order shortly after that (by 2:30 p.m.) to facilitate finishing business and clinics early enough for those traveling a long way to leave before sundown.”
Jane Clarke made the following motion (seconded by Pete Clarke):
Motion: That the draft Minutes for the May 2018 meeting be approved as corrected. The motion passed unanimously.
18.10-4 2019 Mini-Con: Date: Saturday, April 13, 2019. Location: Blue Ridge Fire Company, Blue Ridge, PA. Chair Pete Clarke (firstname.lastname@example.org) summarized arrangements to date:
a. Registration: Volunteers lined up. It was suggested to make the sign-in sheet digital to obtain more usable information about attendees.
b. Informal clinics: Some spaces are still available. (One suggestion: working on a model has gotten very positive response in the past.)
c. Hands-on clinics: Mainline Hobbies has donated DPM kits, and Jeff Grove has donated Carolina Craftsman laser kits.
d. Formal clinics (afternoon): 1) Jeff Grove – laser technology, 2) Ira Silverman – Canadian railroading, and 3) Alex Pollimeni – model railroad operations as game design. The Chair reported having been contacted by a visitor from England offering to compare and contrast modeling in England and the U. S. Members expressed concern that the afternoon sessions will stretch too long limiting attendance for the formal clinics and cutting take-down time for modular layouts. It was suggested that the visitor be invited to give his clinic at a regular meeting.
e. Dealer tables: 1) Larry Nyce – railroadiana, 2) Grant Berry, and 3) Jeff Grove – Carolina Craftsman.
f. Modular layouts: Looking for an additional new group. Contact Chair Clarke.
g. Raffle – $150 gift certificate to Mainline Hobbies.
h. Door prize – $50 gift certificate to HobbyTown, Frederick.
i. SMD brochure to hand out – suggested. (The 4 County group has had success with theirs.)
j. Participation by other clubs and groups welcome.
18.10-5 Web Site: A blog feature has been added to the SMD web site. If members forget the address, a link has been added from the NMRA site. NMRA National has been encouraging divisions to have a greater web presence.
18.11-6 Future notices and updates from the officers will originate from an SMD e-mail address rather than a personal account. With this change, Superintendent Pollimeni expressed concern some members may not receive his e-mail blasts. He requested any member not getting notices to contact him at email@example.com
18.11-7 Operating Session at Mat Thompson’s Oregon Coast Railroad (Gainesville VA): Don Florwick reported there were a few crew spots still open for this TT/TO session (scheduled for Thursday 1-17-19 – snow date Tuesday 1-22-19). SMD members interested in participating should contact Don Florwick by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
(As of 12-27-18, Don reported the crew list full. Contact him to get on the extra board in case of cancellations.)
18.12-3 Host Frank Benenati welcomed everyone to his HO scale Western Maryland themed railroad.
18.12-4 MER Convention Registrar: A volunteer is needed immediately.
18.12-5 Holiday train displays: – Winchester Model Railroad Club (B&O freight house, Winchester, VA)
– 4 County Model Railroad Club modular display (Westminster MD Mall)
18.12-6 Contacting Mini-Con attendees: Several people pointed out this is one of the primary purposes of the Mini-Con. Further discussion will be scheduled for the January regular meeting.
Adjournment: The Chair accepted a motion to adjourn. Notice of the next SMD meeting will be communicated to the members.
Minutes submitted by Clerk Harvey Heyser
Following the meeting, host Frank Benenati was not able to demonstrate using Decoder-Pro and a Sprogg to re-program DCC engines because of a technical glitch (Murphy again), but he held a lively discussion with those present.