New S scale group formed

Jim King

A gathering of approximately 18 S scale modelers met for the first time
yesterday at ETSU in Johnson City, TN. Our common interest is S scale
modeling (not hi-rail), including Sn2, Sn3 and Sn42, though there was no
attendee modeling the latter (that I know of). Among the group were three
manufacturers from this region. All of us are from western NC and eastern

Following lunch-on-your-own and 4 clinics/speakers, including very
informative history lessons about the city's 3 RR's, how to make simple
conifer trees and a quick 'n simple application for el-cheapo white LEDs
from Walmart, we toured the under-restoration ex-Clinchfield freight station
and former ET&WNC "Union Station", still active as the "Free Service tire
center" since 1954. We then gathered back at ETSU for a wrap up, Q&A
session, then adjourned with the promise to continue similar gatherings.

We welcome anyone modeling in S scale, regardless of gauge, living within an
approximate 2-hour driving radius from Johnson City or Knoxville who's
interested in exchanging modeling ideas and/or attending layout operating
sessions, to contact me off-list for info about the group. If you live
farther than the "2-hour circle" we'll certainly not exclude you but
traveling to/from a day-long meeting may be challenging. We encourage folks
from Chattanooga, northeast Georgia, middle Tennessee, southwest Virginia
and southern Kentucky to attend. However, the goal is to remain essentially
centered within the Asheville/Johnson City/Knoxville triangle as that's
where the core group seems to reside.

The group's name is Blue Ridge "S"calers.

Next meeting location (about 6 months from now) will be in the Knoxville/Oak
Ridge, TN area.

We do not plan to have officers or "agendas"; we will rely on member clinics
and operating sessions on member layouts. We have also discussed touring
railroads in the area to better understand modeling such areas, regional
history or just having an outing with like-minded modelers. While modeling
is a major goal, properly understanding the prototype is key to duplicating
it in scale, so 1:1 scale tours are also of interest.

No dues are required but, depending on location, we may need to chip in to
cover room/building rental, etc. for a specific meet.

We plan to meet at least twice a year in one of three target locations:
Johnson City, Knoxville and Asheville/Hendersonville.

Communication will be via email. Friends of yours without email access are
also welcomed but you'll need to get meeting info, etc. to them or have them
snail-mail contact info, including a phone number to me so as to not be
excluded from future communication. Or you can forward this contact info to
me off-list and I'll tabulate with the group. Phone calls will be the
primary communication method for non-emailers.

Those in attendance feel we can grow the group to between 35 and 45 in short
order simply by spreading the word on email lists and amongst our friends.
While it's almost a certainty that we won't have that number of folks
attending each meet, we can comfortably handle 20-25 each time . but NO ONE
will be turned away (an advance "I'll be there" notice is required to ensure
we have adequate meeting room space).

Speaking for the group, I encourage each of you living in this area of the
U.S. to consider joining us on our next meet sometime in early Summer. The
group can ONLY be as diverse and informative as those in attendance. It's a
GREAT way to meet other scalers too.

Jim King

Smoky Mountain Model Works, Inc.

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