Well, another Cal Stewart has come and gone. TTOS SP with the All Aboard Fastrackers were the hit of the show in my opinion. We introduced our new yard for the first time and had lights, running trains, and running accessories. There were a few party poopers that complained about our smoke so we turned it off. Hell, I thought everyone loved root beer scent.
Deals were there. The attendance seemed about the same as last year, maybe a slight increase. There appeared to be more vendors there than last year. I came away with several nice tinplate and postwar items. My loving wife won several raffle items including a '97 era Lionel 763e with command control, Vanderbilt tender, and a pullmor motor along with a K-line circus set. Nice engine as I did a test run but needs some lube.
Everyone seemed to find something. Bill found a prewar Lionel engine that went up in flames on his oval. No damage except hurt feelings and I am sure it will get fixed. The auction was nice except for the hecklers. I walked away early the first day but found a couple of tinplate cars the next day.
I do have a couple of concerns. First was the focus layout which seemed sparse at best. While I do not care to own standard gauge I still study, ask, and try to learn. Another concern is that the public turnout seemed light. Finally was the bickering from some sellers that, just like at other shows, want a lot for their wares and then scream that no one buys. I feel that this scares away new to the hobby people.
I do hope that next year will be as big, of not bigger and better. I like going and I hope that the show did well for all. Here are some pictures:
One thing that might be helpful in boosting attendance by the public would be to provide the event dates, times and location in any reference to Cal Stewart. This seems to be lacking I've noticed. If you want the public and the casual attendee to show up it can't start with insider knowledge and presumed familiarity with all the event particulars. In other words, let everyone know. At least direct interested parties to a website or other social media platform.
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