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Model Railroading World,

During the last two York events we have held two YouTube Meet and Greet sessions in the Orange Hall. Last fall the event featured Eric Siegel from Eric's Trains, Chris from RBP Trains, Jason from Jason's O Gauge Trains, and Norm Charbboneau from Norm's Trains.  This event was full with standing room filled up in the back of the meeting room. We were able to have a few small prizes for guests which were raffled off with door tickets.

In the spring we changed the lineup, it featured Shawn from Dakman Productions, myself, Sid from Sid's Trains, and RJ from RJ's Trains. Again, we had a large turn out with all the seats full as well as a large number of people viewing during our live broadcast on YouTube. We were fortunate to receive a few larger prize donations from the TCA, LCCA, TrainWorld, Trainz, and an anonymous TCA member. These included two O gauge starter sets which we raffled off to those in the room under 16 years old. It was a great event!

This fall we will be back with a new lineup and we hope to acquire a few donations to give away again. This year there will be a few changes:

Time - Saturday, October 21st, 2023 @11:00 AM

Location - Veranda Hall - General public is welcome to this event with their badge!

The lineup will include the following: Eric Siegel from Eric's Trains, Chris from RBP Trains, Jason from Jason's O Gauge Trains, me - Chris's Trains and Things, Peachy from Peachy's Trains, and a possible special guest to be confirmed later.

We hope with a new location we will be able to have more folks attend this growing event! Hope to see you there!

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I will be there. On Saturday I usually hang out a while. However, to touch on what has been said, some people are heading home. Perhaps try for an earlier time to make it better for everyone. What time would that be, maybe sometime Friday afternoon much like the OGR meetings were. I believe that time was 2PM if I recall correctly. In 2019 I was over at Strasburg for the morning with 611(like a few other York attendees), but still made it back to York in time for the OGR meeting. I even had time to help Ed Boyle set up.

@Cmontagna, perhaps consider that Chris, see if the group could do that? See you there.

Pertaining to the time issue on Saturday. We've discussed it previously as a group, knowing that Saturday's attendance seems to be lighter. However, many of the non-members (read: kids) aren't missing school to attend on Friday, and we want to give them an opportunity to attend. Looking ahead I believe we will move to "Day 2" in the spring!

Chris,

At least two posters on this thread are clearly warning you that you're going to fail, and probably miserably at that.

Don't listen to them.

Just go ahead and do it as planned.

Mike

(Looks around)

I don't see anyone saying that at all. Suggestions offered sure, but no one said anything about failing.

Chris, I do support this meeting, heck in April I was fully on board just not able to attend York.  I am curious, would there be a way to figure out via the attendance to see your target audience? I hadn't thought it possible that there is a way to see this, but since the TCA does have a meeting on Saturday morning where they discuss this, maybe that would be a way to measure for you to figure an even better time. What the heck do I know?

@bluelinec4 posted:

Not that you guys have much to offer the seasoned veterans   If your target audience is kids it might be a good time  The other thing is that there arent that many kids in York

So if "you guys" have nothing to offer the seasoned veterans why do you care??? Not everything is about you. There is more to this hobby than the people who have been in it forever. For the past three Yorks I have seen a consistent increase in younger members attending. An event to allow them to socialize, possibly win prizes, and have a fun time is something I see no issues with. I attended the first meet & greet last fall and participated this past April. Plenty of questions from young and older folks were asked and people seemed to enjoy the experience. If you don't like it you don't have to attend, but don't criticize people for having fun and being successful in their mission to make the hobby greater.

Last edited by Sid's Trains
@bluelinec4 posted:

Not that you guys have much to offer the seasoned veterans   If your target audience is kids it might be a good time  The other thing is that there arent that many kids in York

“Not that you guys have much to offer the seasoned veterans” sounds rude and arrogant to me. If you didn’t mean it that way, cool! But please learn how to phrase a sentence to say what you mean.

Guys remember there's one thing we all have in common, we love this hobby.  I consider myself to be a seasoned veteran of this hobby, maybe a better title would be "Old Fart" of this hobby.  Remember, young can learn from the old,  and yes old can learn from the young.  I personally have learned so much from "GUNRUNNER JOHN" and "SID", "Norm Charbonneau", true wizards of the hobby, all from different generations.   Most of the forum members are familiar with John, Sid and Norm maybe not as much. Yes Sid and Norm are Youtubers and have much to offer us old farts.

As someone that has setup meetings during York, I can say without any uncertainty that trying to please everyone and trying to find a time and place is a task given all of the other folks vying for the same time and space.  

I actually think it's a cool thing they are doing.  While it may not interest everyone it's definitely a growing aspect of the hobby.  My own channel has seen an uptick in subscribers and I contribute that to a growing interest in the social media aspect of our hobby.  It certainly helps to keep it in the public's eye.

Good luck guys and keep doing what you're doing.

Gotta love that quote feature.

@MartyE posted:

As someone that has setup meetings during York, I can say without any uncertainty that trying to please everyone and trying to find a time and place is a task given all of the other folks vying for the same time and space.  

I actually think it's a cool thing they are doing.  While it may not interest everyone it's definitely a growing aspect of the hobby.  My own channel has seen an uptick in subscribers and I contribute that to a growing interest in the social media aspect of our hobby.  It certainly helps to keep it in the public's eye.

Good luck guys and keep doing what you're doing.

Gotta love that quote feature.

Marty, I hope to run into you there so I finally meet you in person. Also Marty, is there any way to find out how many of their target audience would be present on which days/time? I'm guessing that it probably would be a general number but not clear on day/time.

Marty, I hope to run into you there so I finally meet you in person. Also Marty, is there any way to find out how many of their target audience would be present on which days/time? I'm guessing that it probably would be a general number but not clear on day/time.

I always felt Friday was the best day at least for the type of meeting I was having.  As Chris pointed out one of their goals is to have more kids to be able to attend so Saturday seems to be the most logical due to school being in but I suspect they would know better.

Seriously, when I stop learning from medical students, residents and fellows 40-50 years younger than myself, I'll know that I'm no longer mentally equipped to practice medicine.  I'm sure the same happens in other fields, whether it's law, retailing or plumbing.  Maybe I'm not sufficiently sophisticated about toy trains, but I learn from the videos and on-line posts of the young people in this hobby, and I suspect the same is true of many geezers like me.

If attendance ain't what you hoped as Ben is suggesting, I'm sure you can learn from the experience .  You young hobbyists seem like pretty smart folks....

Last edited by Landsteiner

For as long as I have been going to York, I have heard people complaining about Saturdays "not being worth it."  And until I became a table holder and had to be there Saturdays, I was also somewhat of that mindset.  I have since learned that, for those who enjoy just being at a train show, Saturdays can be a laid back day of wandering the aisles without having to fight the crowds to see what is on the tables and "score the best deals."  Personally, from a shopping perspective, I have found some great deals on Saturdays that I missed the previous two days because of the hectic atmosphere.

The way I see it, this event, in addition to being great added value to those who can only make it on Saturdays (like school age kids whose parents refuse to take them out of school for such a great educational experience... ), is a good incentive for people to maybe stick around another day, and since their previous events have been pretty much standing-room-only, I'd call them successful in my book.  Plus, if you stick around, you will have another (Friday) night of partying and socializing.

I applaud all the guys involved in this, and I think I might try and sneak away from my tables for a while and attend this coming event.

Andy

@Cmontagna posted:

Model Railroading World,

During the last two York events we have held two YouTube Meet and Greet sessions in the Orange Hall. Last fall the event featured Eric Siegel from Eric's Trains, Chris from RBP Trains, Jason from Jason's O Gauge Trains, and Norm Charbboneau from Norm's Trains.  This event was full with standing room filled up in the back of the meeting room. We were able to have a few small prizes for guests which were raffled off with door tickets.

In the spring we changed the lineup, it featured Shawn from Dakman Productions, myself, Sid from Sid's Trains, and RJ from RJ's Trains. Again, we had a large turn out with all the seats full as well as a large number of people viewing during our live broadcast on YouTube. We were fortunate to receive a few larger prize donations from the TCA, LCCA, TrainWorld, Trainz, and an anonymous TCA member. These included two O gauge starter sets which we raffled off to those in the room under 16 years old. It was a great event!

This fall we will be back with a new lineup and we hope to acquire a few donations to give away again. This year there will be a few changes:

Time - Saturday, October 21st, 2023 @11:00 AM

Location - Veranda Hall - General public is welcome to this event with their badge!

Chris,

I am the current President of the Standard Gauge Module Association, we will be set up with a running layout in Black Hall, adjacent to the restaurant. We will also be using about 125 chairs (and some number of round and rectangular tables) for a Friday AM coffee and donut breakfast in Black Hall that we run for standard gauge aficionados. Will be glad to coordinate with you to make sure there are enough chairs BACK in Veranda for your event on Saturday. Not sure how many will still be in Veranda, we found them in a storage space between the two halls at the Spring Eastern Division meet.

Sid, Chris and the rest of the folks that are putting on this meet and greet, great job and do not listen the the negative feedback. Whenever someone tries to do something good, there's always negative people that complain or try to bring you down. I will be there! The way I see it, if the schedule does not fit your needs then don't go. You young guys keep up the good work!

Richard's Model Trains on YouTube

Unless your target audience traveled to York with their folks, you are likely pulling mostly from the greater York/Harrisburg/Lancaster area.  How many of your target audience drive cars?  If most depend upon their parents for transportation late Friday or Saturday are the most logical days for the event to happen.

Here is a novel idea, ask your target audience rather than speculate.  

The influencers poll their subscribers/casual viewers to determine how many plan to attend York and ask what day/time frame they would like to see the event held.  It is not a scientific poll, the sample group relatively small but it should give you some valuable insight into your decision making process.

Chris,

At least two posters on this thread are clearly warning you that you're going to fail, and probably miserably at that.

Don't listen to them.

Just go ahead and do it as planned.

Mike

Looks like the negative posts got deleted before I could enjoy them.  I'm sure that Chris is destined to fail with the presentation, just like he failed miserably at the last two Yorks.  As Yogi Berra said, "nobody goes there anymore because it's too crowded".

I stuck around for the first one last October and it was a great time.  Couldn't stay for Saturday in April, and can't this time either, so looking forward to an earlier day in the future.

@Landsteiner posted:

Seriously, when I stop learning from medical students, residents and fellows 40-50 years younger than myself, I'll know that I'm no longer mentally equipped to practice medicine.  I'm sure the same happens in other fields, whether it's law, retailing or plumbing.  Maybe I'm not sufficiently sophisticated about toy trains, but I learn from the videos and on-line posts of the young people in this hobby, and I suspect the same is true of many geezers like me.

If attendance ain't what you hoped as Ben is suggesting, I'm sure you can learn from the experience .  You young hobbyists seem like pretty smart folks....

Amen!  When we stop learning, we start dying.  And even if one already knows everything about trains, the enthusiasm of the presenters really recharges the batteries.

@Mallard4468

No posts were negative about the meet and greet, suggestions was all. The only ones deleted were a forum member reacting to another forum member from what I saw. I want to see this as much as anyone else, if not just to chat it up as I tend to do. I think that we are all on the same page, we just didn't realize that we were. What we all want to do is spread the good stuff about the hobby, and maybe we think we all know what is best, when we maybe know just what used to work.

I believe we all want to hear great things about this being a success, maybe we just didn't look hard enough before. We should take a step back, adjust our glasses(even if we don't wear a pair to see), and look again.

@Cmontagna

Hey Chris, I would like to help out. I have a bunch of freight cars(some scale, more traditional), how many should I donate? Message me or whatever you think is easiest to do.

@eddie g posted:

I believe that only the dealer halls are open to the public. Correct me if I am wrong.

In reality, this event is being held in the Veranda hall.  I suspect that you could go even if you didn't purchase a public day pass.  It's a wonderful opportunity for a gathering of those who maintain a YouTube or Social Media presence.  I'm not sure I'll still be around or busy elsewhere but I may attempt to poke my head in and say hi.

Saturday is open to the public, right? Perhaps a blurb in the area community newspapers a few weeks ahead of the date might be a way to increase turnout of families. Most community papers don’t charge advertising fees for community nonprofit events.

Perhaps a call to WGAL or WPMT two TV stations w/local news for the Harrisburg/York/Lancaster area could get some air time coverage if not in advance then same day.

It wouldn't hurt TCA to try to contact them as well if they haven't already done so.

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