2006 convention

nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
Sat Jul 2 08:39:56 EDT 2005

I had the same thought about Thomas the tank engine, but I didn't think I should mention it. Since someone else already has, I want to say that I agree. After all, my children are in the next generation of railfans. Many of us with young kids wonder what will keep our kids interested in trains as they get older. For me, I was always interested in block signals and cabooses as a young boy. During the 611 excursion era, my interests changed and became focused. Now, we have no steam left at all on the mainline N&W, so what will keep my children interested in trains? A few years back Ed King touched on this subject in one of his columns or commentaries referring to younger folks as "after steamers".

Thomas the tank engine is a good way to introduce children to railroading. If you don't have children, it seems kind of silly, or at least it did to me before mine came along. Now, I see what positive effect it can have on them. Thomas allows children to be positively introduced to railroads and trains, and the stories also have a good lesson in them. The engines in the stories are required by the railway owner to be "Responsible, Reliable, and Really Useful." The original stores were written by the Rev. Wilbert Awdry, and he put moral character and responsiblility into those stories. I read the Thomas stores to my children regularly, and they watch the video tapes as well.

I feel that it would be good to have Thomas there for this simple reason. If I go, I'm going to see 475 (as well as you fine folks). My kids will enjoy the trains. But, if Thomas is there, it will be a memory that will last us a lifetime!

Regardless of whether Thomas is there or not, I'm sure it will be a very exciting convention! We're planning to attend and spend a whole week in Southern Pennsylvania.

Ben Blevins

nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org wrote:
It would be nice if Thomas (the Tank Engine) just happened to be in Strasburg during the convention.

Though Thomas is not an N&W engine it is most interesting to see it in operation. I just had 4 grandsons in Strasburg on June 16th and saw Thomas pull 8 coaches & one caboose (with every seat filled).

Thomas would add a new element to the convention.

For those folks not familiar with the Strasburg area (near Lancaster, PA) the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania is across the street from the Strasburg station and the Red Caboose Motel is close-by (worth seeing) and
is again open for business (we stayed there with the boys last month).

Looking forward to the 2006 gathering.

Terry Marshall
Hagerstown, MD

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