Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Model railroading - also an art form?

   We've had an unusual amount of response when our last post about Chris Burden's model railroad sculpture was posted on the WMRC's Facebook page. But the best reply came from our own John Longhurst, who made a post on his own blog, the Manitoba and Minnesota Subdivision, about an Canadian visual artist named Kim Adams who also uses model railroading equipment in his art, which was displayed in the Art Gallery of Ontario.

    Whether you agree with his approach or not, he might be on to something, because he was awarded the Gershon Iskowitz prize of $50,000 for his efforts! You can buy a lot of ground foam for that kind of money!

    To see John's post on Kim Adams, click here.  To read more about Kim Adam's 2013 exhibit at the Art Gallery of Ontario, click here.

Yes folks, this is considered a sculpture by the Art Gallery of Ontario.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Model railroad sculpture displayed at New York City's Museum of Modern Art

   One of our readers sent this image in of a massive sculpture with a model railroad theme, which was displayed at New York City's famed Museum of Modern Art. It's titled Medusa's Head, and it's the work of the sculptor Chris Burden, who passed away last May.

    We'll never know what prompted him to incorporate model railroad equipment into this sculpture. He was also fond of incorporating Meccano and Erector Set parts into his sculptures. Needless to say, it's not an operating layout. Perhaps a more suitable title would've been "Meltdown at the Gateway after the DCC went haywire".

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Could this be the worst roadbed ever?

    Our good friend Chuck Huard sent us this link to this amazing video of a freight train rumbling on the Napoleon, Defiance and Western Railroad (formerly the Maumee and Western Railroad), one of the many railroads owned and operated by Pioneer Railcorp. This railroad runs a short line from Liberty Center, Ohio to Woodburn, Indiana, and boy is it ever a bumpy ride! Check it out by clicking here.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Model railroad features fantastic recreation of downtown Toronto

    Most modellers wouldn't even dream of recreating a big city like Toronto on their layout, but it has been done! Our good friend Chuck Huard, a long time member of the WMRC and a past president, sent us this link that was originally shown on CTV News. This HO scale railroad has scale models of the CN tower, the Skydome, and everything else in between! It has to be seen to be believed! Check it out by clicking here.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Prairie Dog Central's Father's Day train excursion sold out

Please note that the Prairie Dog Central's popular Father's Day excursion train has been sold out.

The Prairie Dog Central railway has many special events and excursions from May to October every year, and many of them sell out in advance. You can purchase tickets at the station before any scheduled ride, but it's always best to go to their website to buy advance tickets and to see if the train you wish to ride on is sold out.

For more information about the Prairie Dog Central, go to their website at: http://pdcrailway.com/

Thursday, June 18, 2015

All aboard the Prairie Dog Central for Father's Day!

   What better way to celebrate Father's Day than a trip with dad on the Prairie Dog Central? Steam locomotive No. 3 will be operating on that day! Listen for it's unmistakable whistle, along with the conductor’s "all aboard", which indicates it’s time to be on our way.

    Enjoy the company of family and friends as you ride across the prairie. Tap your feet to the live on board Blue Grass music and immerse yourself in the presentation by our 1911 passenger agent. During the stopover at Grosse Isle, savor the goodies freshly prepared by the vendors, or just kick back and enjoy more Blue Grass tunes.

    Tickets are $28.00 for adults (14 years old and up), tickets for children (ages 2-13) are $21.95. Children two years old and under ride for free when seated on the knee. If you require a seat for a child two and under, please purchase a children's ticket.

    The train departs at 11:00 AM  at the Prairie Dog Central's Inkster Station, and returns at 2:45 PM.You can buy tickets two hours prior to departure at the station, but they might be sold out by then, so it's preferable to buy the tickets online on their website. Go to http://pdcrailway.com for more information.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Making scenery at the Gateway Western Railway

    WMRC Program Director Morgan Turney took these images of Aaron Woloshyn laying some scenery at the gateway Western. He's using the modeller's best friend, the Topside Creeper, which is available from Micro-Mark. For a big layout like the Gateway, the Topside Creeper is an indispensable tool for getting into those hard to reach spots!

     Tuesday nights are now, still, and always will be Gateway nights. It's a great opportunity for fun, fellowship, and working on the railroad! The crew meets around 7:00 PM at the Winnipeg Railway Museum, located on the second level of the Via Rail station at 123 Main Street.

    Aaron Woloshyn is seen from the outside window of the Gateway, working on the landscaping.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Assiniboine Valley Railway holds public open house this weekend

    WMRC members Tommy and James South ride the rails at the AVR's Fun Run Day, which was held last month. This weekend there will be other engineers and gondolas that you can ride in!

     What better way to celebrate the start of summer than to ride the AVR? They're having their very first open house of the season this weekend, June 13 and 14. Hours are from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturdays, and from 1:00PM to 5:00PM on Sundays.

   A ticket for one ride is two bucks. A twelve ride pass is only $20! Kids two years old and under can ride for free (All minors must be accompanied by an adult). They're at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just past Assiniboine Park!

   For more information, please go to their blog site at: http://assiniboinevalleyrailway.org/blog/

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Morgan Turney is looking for an Apprentice

   You won't be selling lemonade in Times Square. You won't have to deal with the villainous Omarosa or any of the Baldwin Brothers, you won't get hauled into the board room, and you won't get fired.

     But what you will get is an opportunity to learn how to be the Program Director for the WMRC by an expert! Morgan has been doing a stellar job as program director for many, many years. He's been wanting to step down from the position for some time now, but there have been no takers for the job.

   Morgan believes that there have been no volunteers that have stepped forward because the job might seem overwhelming to a novice. This has been a problem with getting people to volunteer in every organization. People are afraid that they'll be thrown into a job where they have no experience or training, and find themselves in a situation that's way over their heads.

  So Morgan has come up with a unique solution: taking on an apprentice for the job!

  If you chose to volunteer for this position, Morgan will train you every step of the way, and he'll make sure that you'll be more than ready and able to take over the reins when the time comes!

   If you're interested, please contact Morgan Turney at morgant@cdnrwymod.com

Sunday, June 07, 2015

Winnipeg Model Railroad Club mourns the passing of Larry Ziffle

   We are saddened to report the passing of long time WMRC member Larry Ziffle. Larry passed away on May 23, after a long and courageous battle with cancer. Larry worked for 40 years at MTS before retiring just last year. He was just 61 years old.

   Larry was also an active member of the Selkirk Model Railroad Association, where he served as their Public Relations Representative.  He was also a longstanding member of the Manitoba Lacrosse Association, where he served as a player, a coach, a referee, and a board member of the Manitoba Lacrosse Hall of Fame.

    Larry loved to play the guitar, and he had also taken up painting. He was an enthusiastic photographer, capturing Lacrosse talent in Manitoba with his camera. His photos can be viewed on his Flickr account at https://www.flickr.com/photos/larry-ziffle/.


Saturday, June 06, 2015

Winnipeg Model Railroad Club Member Paul Ullrich gets published again in Kalmbach's Classic Toy Trains Magazine

   WMRC blog editor Paul Ullrich has had his third article published the "Tips and Techniques" section of Kalmbach's Classic Toy Trains magazine. His article appears in the September 2015 issue.

   The article, which describes how to install a bridge rectifier onto a Lionel reversing unit, makes the fifth time he has been published in the magazine. He has also had two articles published in Trains magazine, and an article published in O Gauge Railroading, and an illustration published in Railfan Canada.

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Winnipeg Model Railroad Club members talents shine at TLR convention

   WMRC members Neil Carleton, Paul Ullrich and Ian Plett show off their spiffy T-shirts (designed by Paul Ullrich) in front of the Richardson grain elevator in Thunder Bay, Ontario at the TLR's 2015 convention. 

   Several WMRC members, who are also NMRA members, left a lasting impression on the rest of attendees at the TLR's annual convention in Thunder Bay, Ontario this year.

    Ian Plett towed the No. 1 Northern Division's Free-Mo layout to the convention in his own trailer. The layout was set up at the location of the old Thom Thumb Hobby Shop in the Fort William area of town. He was assisted in set-up and operation by Neil Carleton, Dennis Rietze and Michael Leader. It was one of the very few times a modular layout has been set up at a TLR convention, and it was a very popular attraction during the convention's two layout hops on Friday and on Sunday.

    WMRC members also won several awards at the convention's annual banquet. Ian Plett, Neil Carleton, and Margaret Ullrich all won modelling awards. Paul Ullrich won "Best in Show" in the photo contest, and he also won the Bob Dew award for his continued and dedicated service to the TLR.

   Ian Plett and Michael Leader operate the No. 1 Northern's Free-Mo layout at the site of the former Thom Thumb hobby shop in Thunder Bay during the TLR's 2015 convention. 
    Ian Plett and Neil Carleton show off the model contest awards they received at the banquet.
    Margaret Ullrich receives her model contest award from Tom Boyd at the convention banquet.

  Paul Ullrich receives the Bob Dew award for his service to the TLR from President Gerry Miller.

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Gateway Western Railway a big hit at Doors Open Winnipeg

By Morgan Turney, WMRC Program Director

   The weekend of May 30 and 31 saw Doors Open Winnipeg,  which included the Winnipeg Railway Museum, along with the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club layout, the Gateway Western Railway.
The trains ran well all day for the two Open House days and at one point on the Sunday, there were seven complete trains running on the layout. Had there been more Digital Command Control (DCC) throttles, we'd have had even more running!

   As can be seen from the photos, fun was had by all. Many thanks to Larry Leavens for trouble shooting the DCC system on Saturday and to those running trains and meeting the public during the two days - thanks for your participation!