Amherst Railway Society

November, 2009

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Amherst Railway Society Railroad Hobby Show
 Amherst Belt Lines

Amherst Railway Society
November 17, 2009
Meeting Announcement

Your help is needed at the 2010 Railroad Hobby Show. Click this link for the volunteer form.

The November meeting of the Amherst Railway Society is Tuesday, November 17, 2009, 8:00 p.m. at the Amherst Middle School CAFETERIA. (First Entrance to the school facing the front parking lot)

The speaker at tonight's meeting will be Richard J. Solomon

Amherst Railway Society Railroad Hobby Show – West Springfield, MA January 30-31, 2010

Mr. Solomon, a former urban planner, has been interested in trains since he was a teenager.

His railroad pictures that he took as an adult have appeared in several road publications.

Tonight's slides will be selected from the pictures he took of New York transit and trolleys in various cities while he was a teenager (1954-1962).


Currently Mr. Solomon designs electronic cameras, teaches at the University of Penn. and is the chief scientist on a project to prototype a full-spectrum imaging sensor, spectrometer, and full-spectrum display.

At U. Penn, Mr. Solomon was Senior Scientist from 1998-2003 studying the interfaces between super high-speed networking, electronic imaging, and the human perceptual system, working with Prof. David Farber at the Moore School of Engineering.

From 1990-1997 Mr. Solomon was Associate Director of the Research Program on Communications Policy (RPCP) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Center for Technology, Policy and Industrial Development. As a principal at RPCP, he was instrumental in the creation of the MIT/Polaroid/Philips 720P/60 camera under a contract with NASA and DARPA (the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency). A camera that captures remote images without the artifacts or imperfections commonly found in off the self consumer HDTV

During 1976-1980, he was a Fellow at Harvard University with the Program on Information Resources Policy, where he researched regulatory and technology issues in telecom and transportation.

From 1973-1975 he was a staff associate at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in the Dept. of Civil Engineering.

Mr. Solomon is the co-author of The Gordian Knot: Gridlock on the Information Highway (MIT Press 1997) and holds 12 patents and patents pending on telecommunications, computer, Internet protocols and applications, and imaging devices.

Message from the Treasurer:


Jan 19, 2010 (MS - Auditorium)
Bob LaMay  "Life of the FL-9"

Mar 16, 2010 (MS - Auditorium)
Members Night  Various short presentations

Apr 20, 2010 (MS – Auditorium – Interpreted for the Hearing Impaired) Craig Della Penna: Rail Trail update

All donations to the Amherst Railway Society may be tax deductible.   As Amherst Railway Society Inc. is a 501 C(3) tax exempt organization, your donations ( of either cash and/or property) may be deducted on your Schedule A, Form 1040 of your Federal income tax.  Consider the Amherst Railway Society in your estate planning.  Your gifts can be restricted or non-restricted (you can pre-determine how you want your donation used).  Upon request, and proper documentation of course, the Treasurer will issue you a letter to be used as justification for you tax deductions

Message from the Clerk:

Attendance at last month’s meeting, “Roots on the Rails” by Charlie Hunter, was 76 people.

Please check your mailing label.  Your membership expires on June 30 of the year listed on the label.  You will not be able to check out items from the library, or participate in other benefits of membership after that date.  Now is the time to think about renewing.  Free for Full Time students, 1 year for $20, 3 years for $50 and 5 years for $80.

Student memberships require the name of the school, and the class/year in addition to the student contact information

This is the last newsletter for those that have not renewed.

Message from the Trip Director:

Tour de Chooch

We have received the 2009 Tour de Chooch schedule, see the website for details. This year’s  flyer, which does not include maps to each layout, has been posted at the ARS Website.   A hard copy was included in last month’s newsletter mailing.

This is a good chance to see home layouts in northeastern Mass and southeast New Hampshire

Nov 28, 2009 9 am – 4 pm
Acton, Beverly, Georgetown, Groton, North Chelmsford, Reading, Saugus, Wakefield(2 layouts), Wilmington,

New Hampshire:

Nov 29, 2009: 9 am – 4 pm
New Hampshire:
Atkinson, Exeter, Epping, Epsom(2 layouts), Greenland, Hollis, Hudson, Meredith, Milford, Newington, Northwood.

Results from last month’s Model Railroad form::

Only two people returned the Model Railroad questionnaire from last month’s newsletter.  Anyone interested in learning more about specific aspects of model railroading please contact the clerk to be referred to someone in the ARS that can help you in that area.

<abel logo>From the AMHERST BELT LINES…

The Belt Lines has just returned from Bedford, NH and the Bedford Boomers Railroad Exhibition.  What a great show!  This is the only ‘all display’ show that the Belt Lines goes to and is a refreshing change and different atmosphere than the typical show.  

The Belt Lines will make its next appearance between the holidays at the New England Model Train Expo in Marlborough, MA, sponsored by the HUB Division of the NMRA®.  The show will be at the Best Western Royal Plaza Trade Center on Saturday December 5 from 10AM to 5PM and Sunday December 6 from 10AM to 4PM.  Setup starts Friday evening.  If you are interested in attending, see Sudro, Clark or Alan at the meeting, or drop them an email at the address below.  See the Modular Mumblings Fall 2009 edition on the web or in print for details.

Email address:

Show Schedule Update

The Belt Lines attends about six shows per year from September through April.  Our schedule as we know it through April of next year is below.  If you would like to mark your calendars for shows we will be attending, here are the dates for the rest of the 2009 and start of 2010:

  • December 5-6, 2009:  New England Model Train Expo – Marlborough, MA
  • January 30-31, 2010:  Amherst Railway Society Railroad Hobby Show – West Springfield, MA
  • February 28, 2010:  Worcester Model Railroad Club Train Show – Auburn, MA
  • April 11, 2010:  Nashua Valley Railroad Association Show – Shirley, MA

<show logo>Message from the Show Director:

A Call to Arms!

I probably can use this for a few more years as there are many of us that still immediately recognize this poster.  This month’s title, “A Call to Arms,” can be taken literally and, in conjunction with this poster, lets you know where this month’s message is headed!

The fact of the matter is that our Show is only as good as the number of volunteers that we have to run it.  With this year’s additional space, we need more volunteers than ever.  Even if you can only put in 2 hours, we want you!  Please, if you can help, fill out this year’s volunteer form.  Duties include simple tasks like door man, unfolding tables, to hanging number signs on posts, to checking badges to distributing flyers to escorting exhibitors to their area.  If you are not sure, just come on down and we will get you an assignment.

If you have never experienced the set up or breakdown of the show, please try to get there on either Thursday or Friday.  There is a genuine mystique that has grown around the setup of the show.  What’s amazing to me is the amount of early “horse-trading” that goes on with the exhibitors and the volunteers.  The faster an exhibitor gets set up, the quicker the trading begins.  It’s actually become a tradition and a great deal of fun – and all before the show opens!  Exhibitors actually look forward to it and press us to get in earlier and earlier each year – they know that it gives them more time to sell!  Remember, during Show set up, parking is free.

For those of you who want to do more, consider becoming a Show Floor Manager.  While the responsibility is much greater and some previous experience is required, it does not take that much time away from you.  Consider a simple 2-hour shift on each day.  That’s all it takes to get started!

So, please consider joining us for the Show setup and breakdown, sign up as a volunteer.  Not only do “I Want You,” but, “ We want you and We need you.”  Our volunteers are the key to why our Show is so successful.  Think about the fact that this show is one of the best and biggest shows in the United States…you play a big role in that…Volunteer Today!!! Click this link for the volunteer form.

John Sacerdote, Show Director

Message from the Rail Magazine:

Announcing: The First Annual Best in Rail Awards: There is much in passenger rail that is exemplary. From captivating stations to distinctive vehicles, much can be celebrated as iconic, unique and worthy of honor. In that spirit, RAIL Magazine will be presenting the first Best in Rail Awards in 2010. As this publication covers the entirety of passenger rail -- intercity, high-speed, heavy metro, commuter, regional, light rail, streetcar, trolley, monorail, airport trains, funiculars; anything that has rails and moves people.

We invite you to nominate outstanding passenger rail achievements in the following categories:

  • Most Distinctive Vehicle (post-1980)
  • Best Modern Passenger Station (post-1980)
  • Best Historic Passenger Station (pre-1950)
  • Most Influential Rail Leader (living, non-fictional)
  • Outstanding Commitment to North American Rail Manufacturing
  • Top Passenger Rail Service (all modes)
  • Most Innovative Design Element (i.e. bridge, map, icon, nuance)

While these categories may seem vague, that is exactly the point: entries are open to your interpretation and best judgment. To submit a nomination in any or all categories, simply send an email to, or send your submission by standard mail to our editorial offices at 1341 G Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005. Submissions must be received by Dec. 31, 2009.

Amherst Railway Society Presents “Amherst Station”

Prototype Photos 11/2/2009

Amherst Station HO Scale Model

This is a fund raising HO SCALE kit for our “Grant Program”

This kit will sell for $107.00 ARS Early Bird, Member Price is $87.00

Tax and shipping will be added to the total order.

If your ARS membership has expired, instead of paying the non-member price, renew your membership before ordering the kit.  The cost of a one year renewal, plus the kit is still $107 but you also get the membership in the ARS and a free pass to the annual Railroad Hobby Show.

Non-member orders must be put on a credit card.  We will also accept cash and checks of Members ONLY; Card will not be billed until kit is shipped.
Click here to download the order form
Fax the order form toll free to 866-730-7060 or mail it to:
Amherst Railway Society, Railroad Hobby Show
P O Box 247, Monson, MA 01057-0247
or contact
Do not send credit card information by email.

Amherst Railway Society
P. O. Box 2351
Amherst, MA 01004-2351

Copyright (c)2009 Amherst Railway Society