NorthWest Scale Modelers' Winter Show

By Jim Schubert
Photos by Tim Nelson, Stephen Tontoni & Jim Schubert

Do you remember the Time/Life book series, THE EPIC OF FLIGHT? Well, that was the broad theme of this year's edition of the NorthWest Scale Modelers' (NWSM) annual Winter Show at Seattle's Museum Of flight (MOF) on Saturday and Sunday February 19 and 20. The NWSM was started years ago by disaffected IPMSers. NWSM has no dues, no elected officers, no organized structure, no membership list and no newsletter. You could say it's a bit casual and you'd be right! The MOF provides a classroom, rent free, for our monthly meetings, in return for which we put on this annual model show. There are no ill feelings between the NWSM and IPMS these days and most participants are members of both.

Last year we had 525 models for the one day show and were determined to do better this year. For months we've been badgering area modelers to, "Bring all your models." As a surprising consequence - they did! Anticipating some success from our "bring out the models" campaign we ordered 20% more tables than last year and ran out of space when 1194 models were put out on the tables before noon on Saturday. A couple of hundred models were actually left in their transport boxes because there was no room to display them. IPMS-Vancouver came down in strength with over 100 models.

Harold Rubin, MOF's Manager of Public Events was a gem and invaluable resource helping us with the museum's administration and staff. Tim Nelson, Stephen Tontoni and Scott Kruize were again the drivers behind organizing this event from our side. Jon Carr Farrelly again did all the signage and graphics work for the show. As in past years several tables were set up, alongside the exhibit area, for modelers to work on their current projects. This stimulates a lot of good conversations with the public and also recruits new members for both clubs as information flyers on the clubs and on local hobby shops are left about the area for visitors to pick up. We also had tables for The Tuskeegee Airmen and The *th Air Force Association.

As part of our show and in recognition of Black History Month, Colonel Holloman of The Tuskeegee Airmen gave a presentation in the Allen Theatre on Saturday about his group's activities in WWII. He is really quite a guy. He's in his eighties and is as active and enthusiastic as any of us. He even came back on Sunday and spent the whole day just hanging out with the modelers and aviation history enthusiasts because he enjoys it.

Bob Jacobs, owner of Galaxy Hobbies, organized and ran a big Make-And-Take program, with over 200 kits, for the kids on Saturday with "expert" help from club members. Emil Minerich, owner of Skyway Model Shop, had a special model display on Saturday and John Tarvin, owner of Burnaby Hobbies in Vancouver, brought a large portion of his collection of "Golden Age" airplanes. Subjects other than aviation were catered for also with a large contingent present from the Puget Sound Auto Modelers Association. Separate areas were provided for the cars, trucks, buses, tanks, ships, figures, Sci-Fi, etc. to be sure to include all tastes in modeling.

Making the show a two day event again, we think, had a lot to do with the large turnout as the logistics of packing, transporting, unpacking, re-packing, transporting and unpacking again is a real pain! And some models are, inevitably, damaged in the process. I think that is the price we must pay for spreading the word about our hobby; it's a way we can give something back to the hobby that gives us so much pleasure over the years. Two days makes it more worthwhile for participants. I quite enjoy having all this time to visit with other modelers and to interact with visitors.

Join us next year and share the fun - and BRING ALL YOUR MODELS.

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