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Our club, the Badgerland S Gaugers is looking to draw more attention to our clubhouse which we share with the WCGD an HO club, we are considering posting some banners in a window that fronts on two streets at the corner of South Street and Grand Avenue in Waukesha, WI. The banners would be 36" long and indicate that this is the home of our two clubs and along with these we would also like to put up a scheduling board to announce open houses.

I want to attach what we are proposing to put in the windows and would like feedback from the folks on the forum, thank you in advance.


Banners1 2023-03-27 001Banners1 2023-03-27 002Sched brd 2023-03-27 001


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  • Sched brd 2023-03-27 001
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  • Banners1 2023-03-27 002
Last edited by Rayin"S"
Original Post

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Hi Ray,

My first impression is that there is far too much information on these and the logos are too intricate.  Keep in mind that a 3-foot banner in a display window is awfully tiny especially if you are trying to catch the attention of cars passing by.  You just want to catch their attention and get them interested to learn more.  All that extra information is important, but could be incorporated into a smaller handout or sign for those closer to read.  Maybe call it the "Home of Waukesh County S Scale Model Railroad" and put the rest on a smaller sign.

I knew a guy who painted billboards and banners.  Some were on the sides of buildings and were 40 feet long or more.  He always used simple words and large type and from a distance even those looked pretty small.

My 2 cents

Mike A.

Ray first off the spelling of Waukesha or Waukesh is inconsistent of the proposed banners. I would suggest that you eliminate the third, fourth and fifth lines on each sign.

Possibly reword as follows.

Welcome to Waukesha County’s

Gandy Dancers

Premier HO-Scale Layout


Same type of format for the S scale sign.


Images (1)
  • mceclip0
Last edited by Rich Wiemann

Assuming these signs are for cars and pedestrians passing by, much of my input relates to some of that previously provided, but will lean toward cars passing by b/c that is more challenging and usually not done very well.  If they're sitting at traffic light you might be the whole sign read if its big enough.  If they're passing by, maybe one line of it.  You didn't say what else is visible through the windows - such as any of the layout(s) themselves or not, but this assumes nothing but the signs.  

  • Drop the third, fourth, and fifth lines on both banners.
  • Drop the logos.
  • Replace the top line of the HO club banner with "Visit our HO Scale Train Layout" (use colors to accentuate layout)
  • Replace the top line of the S club banner with "Visit our American Flyer Layout" (use colors to accentuate the layout)
  • Ideally the second line would simply be or .org, something similar and that would take the visit to the Open House schedule - ideally the OH page on both of your respective websites - see below.
    • Otherwise make the second line on both banners "See Open House Schedule"
  • Make the third line your respective website URL's, but drop the https/... just use "" and "train" respectively
    • Make sure "Open House Schedule" is prominent on the home page of both sites perhaps a very visible hyperlink that with a click takes the visitor to your OH schedule.
  • Ideally, (perhaps as the third or fourth line) have a phone number on both signs that goes to an announcement for your next one or two Open Houses.   (it doesn't have to take messages)

I realize you're not an AF club, but very few people have clue what S-gauge or scale is. The objective here is to rapidly make people aware there are two train layouts in that building they can visit and when.  HO and AF are your best chance to create recognition and interest.  

Open Houses are powerful events for a model RR club in several ways -- community awareness and engagement, hobby promotion, membership growth, and surrounding businesses support (especially eateries - visitors have to eat or drink something sometime).   Our club has an OH once a month.  Now that COVID is less severe, we get 400-500 visitors during each 4-5 hour OH.  We take donations (just a big jar with slot in the lid) and new membership sign-up is now to the point we started a waiting list.  And we're not on a corner, but we put small signs out that day and our PR chairwoman does an excellent job getting the word out ahead of time by other means.

The hard part here is putting club egos aside, but save all the gory details about your name, logo, year founded, etc. for your websites, handout flyers, new member applications, and that sort of thing.

We have trains.  You can see them.  That is the mission of this signage.  KISS and they will come.  

At least that's my two cents worth - or more.  By the way, this all sounds great.  A club with permanently set up HO and S-gauge layouts would be nirvana .


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