Winter 2023 President’s Letter

Greetings Seacoast Members,

It’s hard to believe it’s already February. I hope you are all staying warm and making progress on your railroads this winter.

Annual Meeting Summary

We held our Winter 2023 Event and Annual Meeting at the Westbrook Community Center in Westbrook Maine on January 7th. During the Annual Meeting segment of the Event the 2022 Division status was presented and the three Directors were formally elected per the bylaws. Bob Kotsonis completed his term on the Board of Directors and we all thank him for his service. Jay Ehlen, Guy Mason and Tom Oxnard, MMR were elected to three year terms as Directors. Many of you already know Jay and Tom who were incumbents. Guy Mason is a new Seacoast Member as well as a new Director. Congratulations to all three and thank you for volunteering.

Financially, the Seacoast Division had a good year. The 2022 beginning balance was $5,878.83 and the ending balance was $6,529.34. The major source of income was the sale of donated items at the Silent Auction in April and at the "for sale" table in July.

The Faulter Fund made a major donation ($1,000.00) to the First Baptist Church of Shapleigh Train Club. Several teens are building a modular layout and the Seacoast Division is happy to support them. If you know any young modelers who could use some financial help, have them take a look at our website where an application form is available to down load.

2022 was not a great year for increasing the Division’s membership. Membership dropped from 174 to 157. We lost 20 members and gained only 3. If you know anyone who dropped out, please contact them and encourage them to rejoin, or at least ask the reason why they left.

The Achievement Program gave out only one AP Certificate for the year. Hopefully we’ll see an increase in 2023.

Dave Delorey continues to do a great job with our website at The website has an incredible number of resource documents and clinics linked to it. Please take a look when you can.

Geoff Anthony, the Switch Tower Editor, is always in need of articles for the Switch Tower. Even a few photos of your latest project will be a welcome addition to the Switch Tower. The January 2023 edition of the Switch Tower was recently added to the website.

Four quarterly Events were held in 2022. The Winter Event was hopefully our last "Zoom only" event. The other three were live with Zoom. Jay Ehlen has stepped up to be the Activities Coordinator. Thank you Jay! We need a second Activities Coordinator to work with Jay who is knowledgeable in MS Excel and Word, Zoom, and computers in general. Please think about stepping up and taking on this role.

Eight Seacoast members attended the 2022 NER Connecticut Yankee Convention in Windsor CT. Seacoast members John McHugh and Jim Gore. MMR gave clinics at the convention.

Winter 2023 Event

Besides losing Bob Kotsonis as a Director, he also stepped down as the Audio/Video coordinator for the events which included broadcasting them on Zoom. Tage and I tried to get everything working at the event, but we were only partially successful. Our A/V skills need improving and we are looking for a member to step up and take Bob’s place as the A/V coordinator. If you have computer skills, please consider volunteering.

Dan Pugatch gave a great clinic on Modeling Brick and Concrete, and the rest of the Winter Event focused on Operations. Included were a clinic by Bruce Robinson, a hands on demonstration by Chuck Hastings and the Southern Maine Model Railroad Club, and a panel discussion/presentation on operations with panel members Matt Keiser, John Newick, Bruce Robinson and myself. Rob Selberg opened his St. James Sub (N) following the Event. I would like to thank all of those above who participated in and supported the Winter Event.

Seacoast Spring 2023 Event

The Seacoast Division Spring 2023 Event on April 15, 2023 and the location has not been finalized yet. Watch for the Event notice. Jay Ehlen is organizing the event and we are in need of clinics and presentations. Some feedback which we received at the Winter Event was for more variety in the clinics/presentations. We are planning the Spring Event with more variety in mind. Having been the Activities Coordinator for several years, I have always looked for clinics in these four general categories:

  • Member’s Layouts - Concept, Design, Construction, Prototype, Operations:  If you have built or are building a layout, take some photos or a video and tell us about it. We’re always interested in seeing what everyone has accomplished

  • Historical & Prototype:  Many members have taken and collected photos of prototypes over the years. Prototype photos and history always make a great presentation. Do you have a collection of photos – we’d like to see them? Even if you have slides, we can support a slide presentation.

  • Technology:  This is always a great topic, especially some aspect that is new to model railroading.

  • General "How To":  These clinics have been the mainstay of our Events and are always well received. Short, mini-clinics are also welcome.
  • One clinic in each category makes a great Event! At this time, we do not have any clinics lined up for the Spring 2023 Event. We need your help. Please consider giving a clinic at the Spring Event and subsequent Events.

    Other Upcoming 2023 Shows and Events

    The Maine 3Railers Model RR & Dollhouse Show is February 18, 2023 at the National Guard Armory, 179 Western Ave., Augusta ME.

    NERx - The Northeastern Region (NER) will be holding another NERx event on March 20-23, 2023. NERx is an "on-line convention" held in the evenings of the above mentioned dates. Anyone can join in and watch on- line clinics, video layout tours, roundtable discussions and model showcases. Look for it on the website.

    The Southern Maine Model Railroad Club is hosting its 3rd Train Show at the Westbrook Community Center, 426 Bridge St., Westbrook, Maine, on April 22, 2023. Details for the show are available at The Seacoast Division needs a few members to man a Membership Recruitment table at the event. Chuck Hastings is also looking for clinicians to give presentations during the show. Please contact me if you can work the table or give a clinic at the show. I hope many of you will attend the show and support the SMMRC.

    The Great Falls Model RR Club show will be held at the Mt. Ararat High School, 68 Eagles Way, Topsham ME on April 29, 2023. Details for the show are available at

    Seacoast Division 2025 NER Convention Exploratory Committee Status

    The Seacoast Division 2025 NER Convention Exploratory Committee continues to investigate the possibility of the Seacoast Division hosting the 2025 NER Convention. Earlier, while waiting for another Division’s plans to firm up, we were considering either 2024 or 2025, but the Lake Shores Division has recently committed to host the convention in Rochester NY in 2024. At this time we have located one feasible venue in Concord NH and we are continuing to look at other options. Each of the four major committees (Overall Convention, Inside Activities, Outside Activities, and Publicity) will be co-chaired in order to share the workload. At this time two Seacoast members have volunteered to be a co-chairman for the Inside Activities Committee and the Publicity Committee. We are still in need of at least one volunteer for each the co-chair positions in the Overall Convention Committee and Outside Activities Committee before we can commit to hosting the 2025 NER Convention. Please think about stepping up and becoming a Committee Co-chairman.

    Once again, consider volunteering. This is your organization and we need help in several areas.

    Enjoy the winter and I hope to see you at the Spring Event.

    Glenn Mitchell
    Seacoast Division NMRA President & Director

    Published: 10 February 2023