Author Topic: Victorian Christmas 2017  (Read 7495 times)

Joe Fox

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Re: Victorian Christmas 2017
« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2017, 06:28:13 PM »
As mentioned, advertising is a huge part of an area of improvement. 6,000 riders a year is good, but I think we should try to find ways to increase it. 6,000 is a little larger than Wiscasset, and there are thousands of Mainers who do not know we exist.
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Fred Morse

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Re: Victorian Christmas 2017
« Reply #16 on: February 07, 2017, 07:33:16 PM »
There's no deadline for food or things to be given to animal shelters! We could collect that stuff anytime of year.

Gordon Cook

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Re: Victorian Christmas 2017
« Reply #17 on: February 08, 2017, 01:15:02 AM »
I realize we are trying to shorten the day for the volunteers, but...

Steam, snow, kerosene lamps, and candles make for a memorable after dark experience. I know that by the time we finish on VC it is usually dusk, but an intentional 'xmas lights special' at 5 pm might be popular. Nothing Edaville like, just a couple of Christmas trees lit up at AC and Sheepscot and the romance of the rails at night.
 
Is that something we could charge for? If reservations are required then we could determine if there is enough interest to justify the extra effort.

Just a thought.

Gawdon

John Kokas

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Re: Victorian Christmas 2017
« Reply #18 on: February 08, 2017, 11:57:51 AM »
Gordon, I think you're on to something.  Can't do a Polar Express, but a Sheepscot Express might be just the trick; wouldn't hurt to try.....
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Joe Fox

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Re: Victorian Christmas 2017
« Reply #19 on: February 08, 2017, 12:00:56 PM »
Gordon, I have been trying to develope a proposal for this idea. My though was set up 3 lineside scenes with lights around trees, at Humason, etc. However the down side is not only crew, but scheduling enough events to make the set up worth it.
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Stephen Piwowarski

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Re: Victorian Christmas 2017
« Reply #20 on: February 08, 2017, 12:53:07 PM »
Gordon and Joe- I too was thinking along those lines. I think we have many of people who come out for VC to experience the railway in winter. The experience Gordon mentions could well be targeted towards them.

Joe,  agree that marketing is important- what about thinking about ways to improve attendance during other times of the year? For example, how can we encourage people to come on a Sunday in May, a time when we typically have lower attendance- how can we entice people to show up then? What do we have to offer them at that time of the year?

I believe that if we grow attendance during the rest of the year, Victorian Christmas will follow suit just by word of mouth.

Steve

John Kokas

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Re: Victorian Christmas 2017
« Reply #21 on: February 08, 2017, 01:01:48 PM »
I think we should keep it simple but special.  To be honest, I'm not a fan of the Edaville style displays, not very personal.  What I would suggest is having everything at Alna Center since we set that up for the daytime trains anyway.  My idea would be to have a large "party tent", where Santa would have his chair and Christmas Tree.  We could arrange with parents to bring a present for each child (wrapped with name), and take those up before the train arrives and place around the tree.  Then when the train arrives, parents and children would go to the tent and sit for a Santa story, and then Santa could call up each child for a picture and get their present.  I would guarantee that this would be an evening that both children and parents would never forget.  
Moxie Bootlegger

Jason M Lamontagne

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Re: Victorian Christmas 2017
« Reply #22 on: February 08, 2017, 01:20:12 PM »
The first years of Victorian Christmas (2001, 2002) were operated to 7pm (maybe 8?), and included a public pot luck dinner.  The concept was to truly harken back to an event of 1895, which centered around direct community involvement.  The ambiance created by the night trains added to the desired atmosphere.  The entire thing was very well received, and did well to execute the idea of a "Victorian" Christmas, BUT it was exceedingly difficult to produce at the time.  Especially the pot luck:  folks would bring food dishes to be heated.  The only place to do that was in Bay 1 of the shop, while serving happened in the freight shed.  The pot luck was quickly dropped.  As the years went on, the closing hour was moved up sooner and sooner, as the long days just wore on us.

 In my opinion, the event has become much more manageable but much less in keeping with period (turns out "Victorian" wasn't correct, but now that's got branding power).  We do well, but I feel that light displays would bring us further from "Victorian" or whatever the right term should be.

A public pot luck (Percival house basement?) and simple evening trains would get is tuere, but would, once again, be hard to manage.

See ya
Jason
« Last Edit: February 08, 2017, 01:23:05 PM by Jason M Lamontagne »

Joe Fox

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Re: Victorian Christmas 2017
« Reply #23 on: February 08, 2017, 02:49:08 PM »
My idea involves no actual display lights. At least not at first. I want something simple that I can put together alonr in one day. Simple lineside displays involving single strands of lights. Do some tree trunks, etc. I do not want to go into too much detail on my ideas here. That way if it happens its a surprise.
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Eric Schade

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Re: Victorian Christmas 2017
« Reply #24 on: February 26, 2017, 03:27:43 PM »
I would expect to be able to do either day, but bringing the model railway would be harder for both.
Eric Schade, Phippsburg, Maine