Well, we did a one-day train show today, up in Deland, 44 miles from base camp. It wasn’t too bad – we did the setup the day before in record time (two hours to the second, from the start of loading to walking out of the hall, all done (including transport)). The layout was already quick to set up and we’ve made it even quicker. Once we get the new buildings glued down, we’re really going to be cooking.
The show was fun. I guess our greatest shortcoming are the number of trains we can put out. Back in the old module days, there wasn’t much scenery that hadn’t been eaten by roaches, the trackwork was bumpy and the right-of-way as dull and straight as a prom date. We’d get perhaps 3-5 trains out. Now that same number of trains fills up the layout, meaning you have to run signal to signal, waiting for the reds to clear. Yeah, not much gets run – everyone complains about that. I just wish they’d preference it with the reduction of setup time from 8 hours to 30 minutes, the stunning scenery, the effortless teardown, and the fact that three guys unloaded it at the clubhouse in 10 minutes (used to take half the club 30 minutes just to get all the boxes through the door).
Anyway, below is a nice shot of our newest effort, the wedding in the Jacksonville Convention Center. I’d built the building – it was huge, and we wanted to do something with the interior that would amaze the onlookers. I’ve seen photos of receptions in that hall, so how about a wedding? And here it is, Jacksonville in April, romance in the air, and 147 hand painted figures in attendance. Even the “Blue Man Group” is there (you gotta look close). Thanks to Brian LeVasseur and Gretchen Sterner for all that brushwork!