2021 Year End Message
Another year is under our respective belts and are we out of the Covid woods, one would hope, but we remain wary? I believe that we will be forever wary, this virus has become a reality to some and we have faced it with awareness and have thus far been successful. There are lingering examples and new examples of this disease around the world, this year has been different, but we followed a correct protocol and reduced the risk. Our success, not one of us has succumbed to the disease, a few caught it, but those that did came out on the other side.
We, in my opinion, have had many accomplishments this year, actually we had a record in one category, membership. Promotion of the museum is done by many of the members, some is word of mouth, but we did quite well with membership this year. A record of 12 new members have joined the ranks, the majority of them junior members, but we got a few seniors in there. A couple of past members rejoined and in total we have set another record, we are 40 plus in membership. A fourth of that total made up of juniors, remember, our younger members are the future! Plus, when a junior member signs up we get their parents as members also. The participation of the parents in the operations of the museum spreads the safety responsibilities to more eyes, their assistance ensures the safety of all the members and the museum assets. I appreciate their participation.
We re-opened amid a somewhat questionable timeframe of the virus, but it was well received and the public was happy to see our return. Much work went into putting on a fresh face and the participation of the membership was well, exemplary.
Another accomplishment was the success of our annual, actually what will be the annual swap meet. Alan Chesler had great expectations for the swap meet and those expectations were fulfilled. He pushed for ideas that had not been thought of and he promoted a positive attitude toward the success, with assistance from a few and the participation of many, he pulled it off. The efforts of everyone involved is proof of what our organization can do with future events, with forethought, management and perseverance we can do almost anything.
The continuous improvements to the museum proper and of the layouts is always an accomplishment. Much has been done to both layouts and the comments from the public support the work that has gone into getting them where they are.
The plans for displays, the organization of the displays, the changing of displays lies with a few, but one in particular is the driving force. Sandra Feldman can be found arranging, rearranging, changing, organizing, offering suggestions of improvement and implementation, her presence is felt.
There have been pluses and minuses, but this year one minus stood out. We as a group lost a stalwart supporter of the museum, one who knew no bounds for experimentation, regeneration and renovation. Hermann Roeseel was a character, a mentor, a story teller, and a cobbler in the true sense, give him a problem and he would cobble a solution. His passing has left a void in the everyday accounts of the museum.
What is on the agenda for the coming year? Hopefully an extension on the lease we hold with the state, that will be my emphasis, we still have about 20 months, but we are dealing with a bureaucracy. Additions to the displays, hang a three light signal head, begin refurbishing the newly attained speeder, spruce up the paint trim on the building, change the lighting, continue construction on the layouts, there are many things to get done.
There are six people I recognize who this past year have gone beyond the norm, whether it be for participation, foresight, or just plain effort, providing success of the organization.
Stuart Aaron for his selfless assistance to any and all who need electronic guidance and his coordination and management of the young and some old layout operators.
Bill Logan for his efforts in pursuing and planning of the reopening of the museum this past September and his perseverance in building a museum quality layout.
The Feldman’s, Sandra for taking on tasks that were beyond her purview, but not her knowledge and enthusiasm. Howard, for knowing when to step in and take charge and his ability to follow through with his
Mike Bonacci, who although he is one of our junior members has taken on a responsibility normally taken by a senior. He has been a most needed overseer of junior members by monitoring their movements and assisting in the operations of the layouts.
Alan Chesler for his vision, thought and management of what has been a milestone in the history of the museum for the success of the annual swap meet and among other tasks he has taken responsibility for.
Once again, as president of this organization I can be proud of all the effort that has been expended this past year and know that you all have a vested interest in the future of the museum. I hope all SFRM members and their families have a very free and less stressful new year ahead of you.
Happy New Year