Author Topic: MNGM's future?  (Read 7640 times)

Matthew Gustafson

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MNGM's future?
« on: December 28, 2008, 07:37:25 PM »
Im a bit worried about all this money trouble and im a bit concerned that if the museum will close down! I infact do not want this to happen because they have the best collection of 2 foot gauge rolling stock and engines and I do not want them to be sold off! What can we do to help MNGM survive for the future generations to vist MNGM? :( :-\ :(
« Last Edit: December 28, 2008, 07:45:38 PM by Matthew Gustafson »
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Mike Fox

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2008, 07:55:43 PM »
I don't think you have anything to worry about, Matthew. MNGRR is here to stay.
Mike
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Matthew Gustafson

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2008, 08:04:20 PM »
Okay thanks Mike! ;D The reason I was worried because Ive being hearing a lot on this form that the MNGM is struggling to earn money! Why and when did this happened?  :) ;) ??? :)
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Pete "Cosmo" Barrington

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2008, 11:54:27 PM »
That's a long saga in and of itself Matt.
Basically, MNGRR was getting it's rent of the old Portland Co. property free from Phineas Sprague, one of it's founders. Unfortunately, it was decided by Phin that the museum  should begin "paying it's own way" and he made it clear that the museum would need to begin paying rent on thier property at a time which (if I'm not mistaken,) has recently come to pass.
I belive MNGRR's saving grace is it's ability to host such events as THOMAS and the MGM-licenced "POLAR EXPRESS" trains. FWIU, between the two, and other events, they're pulling in enough now to meet expenses, though by just how much I can't say.
At least, that's how I hears it. ;)
Besides the rent, there's also thier fuel and insurance bill, as well as heating and lighting etc.
Unlike WW&F they don't own thier own property.
Also, they've picked up a few bucks from leasing out MRR #3 to Sandy River up in Philips, but for how much, or what portion ov cash-vs-needed mechanical work I again cant say.
Hope that helps.

(Anyone else that DOES know better PLEASE feel free to chime in/correct me. Thanks. ;) )

Mike Fox

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2008, 12:00:46 AM »
I think you might be miss-interpretting something you read. A lot of the money raised is from donations. One way to get the required funds is to ask for them. That is essentially what is being done. Everything that needs to be done takes money. Restoration, maintenance, and so on. So don't take them asking for money to mean they are on hard times. Become a member of Maine Narrow Gauge and recieve their flyer that tells you all about the happennings there. I forget how often it comes out (every other month?) but it does have info in it.
    
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Vincent "Lightning" LeRow

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2009, 10:57:00 PM »
The two foot flyer is realeased quarterly.  and one of our big problems at MNGRR is the loss of earned income with or severed conection to Franklin Arterial.  Our ticket booth remains, but the tracks were pulled two years ago.  This stole all of our visibility and with it our crowd of paying riders....

The other sad part is the efect it had on the volunteers.  ever since there has abeen a rather gloomy feel to most of the people there.  And now our mainline is held together with a couple rotten ties and hopes/dreams of some miracle arround the corner.  In some respectS I can't blame the other volunteers for the way they feel, loosing a half mile of mainline and the only repair building conected to 'live' rail.  It's devastating.  But it's about time we got to work.  It's just tough when you set up a work event and you and the friend who rode up there in your car are the only people to show up.  (between the two of us we rebuilt 100ft. of track in 5 hours arround trains.  new ties, spiked, leveled, and tamped by hand) 

That and our rolling stock is rotting faster than we can repair it  It's really no wonder there are a lot of negative rumors going arround.  the state of things was dire enough that if Polar Express wasn't a sucess the museam would have folded, but it was a roaring sucess and we live for another day.
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Matthew Gustafson

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2009, 05:13:34 AM »
Oh dear! Thats not good at all! But i can understand why the rolling stock is roting fast because of the salty air! But why is the salty air able to rot away at the rolling stock?  :o :-\ :( :-\
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Hans Brandes

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2009, 05:37:39 PM »
The salt air takes a toll on our equipment because we lie right next to the ocean. Any rainstorms are driven directly at us from the ocean. Water then goes down the windows and gets in the window sills. It also goes down the sides and gets into the sills below the floor. When we rebuilt car 22, the worst rot was the side facing the ocean. Unfortunately, we do not have a turntable and can not turn our cars. This would help to even out wear and tear. This includes wheel wear as we basically have one big curve.

On the bright side, Maine State Pier has taken a step in our favor. We should know this month whether Ocean Properties (the developer that included us in their plan) will be awarded the Maine State Pier job. Let's cross our fingers on that as it would open the door to get us back to Franklin Street. We have good communication with Ocean Properties and they saw our success with Polar Express first hand.

Matthew Gustafson

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #8 on: January 06, 2009, 04:27:06 AM »
Thats good news! How far is Franklin Street from the museums end of track?  :D
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James Patten

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2009, 12:22:36 PM »
The Portland City Council has voted to re-open negotiations with Ocean Properties.  So probably in a few months we'll see something on this.

Hans Brandes

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #10 on: January 06, 2009, 05:16:27 PM »
End of track is about 600' from Franklin Street. Getting there is a little bit complicated.

First is that we have to get across Hancock Street. The current grade is high for a flat crossing so the track needs to be lowered.

Second is that we lease the ROW from the state up to India Street. The Ocean Gateway project encroached on this by paving the sidewalk over part of our width. They know this.

Third is that the city owns from India Street to Hancock Street. This is the piece of property that the developer has rights to develop. Their (Ocean Properties) plan shows a single track back to Franklin Street. Ideally we would like to fit another run around between Hancock and Franklin Street. It's doable in length but the width gets tight towards Franklin Street.

At present, there is no plan to round the corner and run track all the way down the pier.

Our next step is to re-engage Ocean Properties and get right in and work with them as plans mature and get a sense for a time line. Polar Express brought us great ridership. Now we want to market this to the developer and remind them what kind of business could be brought right to their doorstep during the holiday season.

Mike Arnold

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2009, 11:25:18 PM »
The salt air takes a toll on our equipment because we lie right next to the ocean. Any rainstorms are driven directly at us from the ocean.
Tell you this first, when I got my chance to visit the museum this summer when the ship I work on was docked at the cruise ship terminal. It was a mess. I was wet head to toe.Rain everywhere they asked if I wanted a ride because it was the last of the day, I was not going to have them run a train just for me in this weather or any. But still always enjoy that museum. Boy I miss thoes days in 2005 boarding from the terminal.
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Hans Brandes

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #12 on: December 06, 2009, 12:53:03 PM »
OK, one can look at the glass as half empty of half full. Let's try half full.

In 2009:

- We are currently in the midst of a successful Polar Express. Our consist includes the restored SR&RL 15 combine that was done as a donation by Penobscot Lumber Company in Rockport, ME. This is our First Class car and it has been a sell out.

- We rebuilt all our steam hoses and valve on all the Polar cars to ensure a very reliable heat system. This was no small effort.

- We have one of our open car 105 in the museum for repair. This carpentry work is what creates the dust and "mess" but that is all part of being a working museum.

- Once 105 is done, we will bring in coach SR&RL 19 for a major rebuild and potential use as a second First Class car due to market demand. We have a great carpentry crew that can do wonders. We have many great ideas about how to configure this car. Could be some "Rangeley" features.

- A second car is now at Bridgton.

- We have picked up some volunteers with mechanical skills to help out in the engine house. This will help out with #7

For 2010:

- Our #1 priority for 2010 is getting B&SR 7 back in service. Boiler work continues in Alna and once completed will be a fine running engine for many years as we are taking the time to do all needed repairs. Remember, the boiler is over 50 years old and we must comply with state and FRA regulations.

- Track work will continue. We have a 15 year lease with MDOT for our ROW so that uncertainty has been eliminated.

- MRR 3 will be on line at Phillips in the best shape it has ever been.

We continue to be generous with helping other railroads through leasing our equipment. Our equipment is in operation at WW&F and SR&RL; some of our best pieces. This helps fulfill our mission statement of "preservation of Maine industrial history and technology (not just Portland's).

Mike Fox said it best...pay your dues, give money to any and all of our organizations. Yes, I too am a Life Member of WW&F!

Hans



Eric Bolton

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2009, 11:31:58 PM »
Once 105 is done, we will bring in coach SR&RL 19 for a major rebuild and potential use as a second First Class car due to market demand. We have a great carpentry crew that can do wonders. We have many great ideas about how to configure this car. Could be some "Rangeley" features.

I am assuming that by calling the car "SR&RL 19" you mean it is an original SR&RL coach. My question is why would you alter a historic car? Is it a good idea to turn it into something that it never was?

« Last Edit: December 07, 2009, 11:42:00 PM by Ed Lecuyer »
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Vincent "Lightning" LeRow

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Re: MNGM's future?
« Reply #14 on: December 08, 2009, 04:16:46 AM »
I would much rather see an Edaville built car be turned into a "Rangely" mimic than a car with historic value.   :-\
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