Author Topic: 2016--Quite a year at the WW&F  (Read 5542 times)

Gordon Cook

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2016--Quite a year at the WW&F
« on: December 26, 2016, 02:39:03 PM »
So, in this last week of 2016, how about reminiscing a bit about the accomplishments and events at Sheepscot this year?

I'll start off with the latest event, which may not have been a record setter but certainly for me personally was an experience I'll keep with me for a long time: Victorian Christmas in a Maine snow storm, running #9 with a brace of three 2' gauge coaches trailing behind, full of happy folks.
All day, #9 barking, fighting, all the way to Alna Center Station, AKA the North Pole. Wes keeping her hot. Kids scraping through the frost on the windows to see out of the coaches. Drivers slipping and spinning. Train crew making everything work. Smell of pine wreath baking on the smokebox. Santa and Mrs. Santa, toughing it out in the cold to make the kid's smile. The handsome pair of horses (and human!) seemingly oblivious to the snow and cold as they took a wagon full of hardy Mainers around at AC . All our fabulous volunteers making sure everyone is warm, safe and happy.
Thanks, everyone. Looking forward to 2017.

Bill Baskerville

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Re: 2016--Quite a year at the WW&F
« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2016, 03:33:20 PM »
To follow Gordon's lead, at my stage of life, I find my greatest satisfaction from helping achieve goals that benefit others.  Our Diminutive Railroad, not only provides that satisfaction in helping others by doing something I really enjoy, it does something else that I never expected.  We all are now a part of, not only recreating history by providing train rides that reflect a time long gone, but building something that will preserve our piece of Maine history for many, many generations to come.  For myself this year includes, working with others to build my first switch, at TOM, and to help finish the turntable.  This while getting to watch others who are getting a century old locomotive back to steaming on the rails, or rebuilding a historic box car, or preserving our historical record in the archives room, or many other large and small projects too numerous to enumerate. 

Each person it has been my privilege to meet and work with at the Sheepscot environs brings their skills, their enthusiasm, their pride in accomplishment and both their love and their joy of being a part of something greater than all of us by recreating history thru it's tangible objects and it's intangible experiences.  All of which we unselfish-less leave for others to enjoy.  What could be a better Christmas.

I am humbled to be a part of this great endeavor.

~ B2 ~ Wascally Wabbit & Gofer ~

Mike Fox

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Re: 2016--Quite a year at the WW&F
« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2016, 04:03:00 PM »
I think there is so much that can be said about this year. The first year #9 is in operation. TOM clearing and grading. Narrow gauge convention. Turntable, final center bearing base design and construction. Planning northward expansion.

My favorite times are the work weekends. Always someone new to see, and also able to catch up with other volunteers that are not normally at the museum.
Doing way too much to list...

Wayne Laepple

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Re: 2016--Quite a year at the WW&F
« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2016, 07:50:40 PM »
I was fortunate to make four trips to Sheepscot in 2016. Every time I visit, I learn something new, and I meet at least one new person who shares my interests. That's what makes it all worthwhile to me.

The absolute highlight of 2016 for me was the week of the National Narrow Gauge Convention. During that time, I got to meet several folks in person whom I had previously met on line, and my wife and I had a chance to reconnect with our friends Bill and Bronwyn Hanks from Australia. I was able to qualify as a brakeman, and I helped demonstrate hot riveting with our Allen riveter.

I was also on hand for the spring and fall work weekends, plus a quick trip to deliver parts from Cattail Foundry for the turntable. Indeed, it was a great year for me and the museum.

James Patten

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Re: 2016--Quite a year at the WW&F
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2016, 09:01:14 PM »
2016 was a very good year for ridership, and would have been a record-breaker if we hadn't had a snowstorm during VC.  The record year was 2005 with 6007 riders (tickets + free), this year we had 5730 riders.  2007, the year the NG Convention was last in the state, we had 5676 riders. 

Interestingly enough, we actually had more riders at the end of August this year than we had in 2007, the Convention having been at the end of August that year.  However in 2005, 06, and 07 we had very good Halloween ridership those years (over 1000), which we likely would not have surpassed if the Convention was not around.

Stewart "Start" Rhine

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Re: 2016--Quite a year at the WW&F
« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2016, 10:06:33 AM »
A few highlights from 2016 -

* 21 Campaign to build new boilers for #10 the the planned #11

* Locomotive #9 in service for one year as of Victorian Christmas

* Completion of the turntable

* Boxcar #67 project

* Hosting hundreds of guests during the National Narrow Gauge Convention

* Tree clearing and trackwork at ToM which includes the new sawmill spur

* Restoration and use of the Allen Riveter

* Construction of the flanging machine

* Construction and use of the Woods track

* Painting of the car storage building

* Construction of an air actuated flanger for #52's snowplow

I joined the WW&F 20 years ago and made my first visit 19 years ago.  The first trip to Sheepscot was for the railroad but every visit since then has been to be a part of the wonderful progress and spend time with the friends I have made.  Thank you Harry for starting the museum that brought us all together.  2016 has been a banner year for accomplishments and the new year should be even better.  I look forward to seeing many of you in 2017.
« Last Edit: December 28, 2016, 02:25:24 PM by Stewart "Start" Rhine »

Ira Schreiber

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Re: 2016--Quite a year at the WW&F
« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2016, 12:41:01 PM »
Yes, 2016 was quite a year.
I admire all that has been accomplished and look forward to next year.
My thanks to one and all my friends, now and in the future.
Happy New Year
Ira Schreiber