In my previous "editorial" of 9/9/99, I requested a response from site visitors about an F-84 club and newsletter. For those who did not read that editorial, it was in response to a suggestion by a visitor that I should start an F-84 club and newsletter. I presented my viewpoint of the subject and my qualifications -- or lack thereof -- to undertake such a task, and requested response from visitors giving their opinions or suggestions. The response was limited, and all responses were negative. Essentially, all of you who responded said "stick with doing the site." That's what I had hoped to hear; subject concluded.
The model club I am a member of, OHMS/IPMS (aka Oregon Historical Modelers Society, one of the IPMS chapters in Region 7) hosted a Recon yesterday (Oct. 23rd). It was held at Pearson Air Museum, Vancouver, Washington, which is just across the Columbia River from Portland, Oregon. For those who are not familiar with this geographic area, Vancouver is part of the Portland metropolitan area, and although across the state line, is essentially a suburb of Portland (in response to that statement, you may hear Vancouver residents screaming and yelling across many time zones). OHMS had not hosted a regional model show for some years, so President Larry Randal and Secretary David Redlich had a task on their hands reinventing the wheel to transport the show into unknown territory, along with high expectations based on no recent statistics as to how many entrants and show visitors might be expected to attend. Plans were made starting about a year ago, so the venue at the Pearson Air Museum, along with promotional releases, awards, vendors, door prizes, and food service, and two outstanding guest speakers were arranged for well in advance.
The show turned out to be a great success for the many. Yes, there were a few warts here and there, but they were small warts, and, show me anything good, and it will generally have some places to improve. The venue was outstanding; what better place to have a model show than to have the tables displaying the models dispersed among the museum's aircraft displays. The models were outstanding; the quality of models and variety of subjects never ceases to amaze me at these shows. The turnout was great; although not jam packed, the tables were generally full, and turnout was in excess of 260 people with some 400 models on display. The vendors' area with 30 tables for the vendors was packed with bodies every time I went there, and a couple of vendors that I questioned said they had a very good day. Door prize sponsors provided an outstanding number and variety of modeling items from kits to decals and accessories, books, gift certificates and entry passes. In addition, other non-modeling related companies donated gifts as well. Volunteer help was outsanding; OHMS leadership and club members in planing, promoting, attending meetings, judges (local and out of area), food service, helping hands to set-up and tear down, a great number of people used their time and skills to make the show a success. And, I can't forget the guest speakers.
Col. William H. Holliman III, of the Tuskegee Airmen, presented over an hour's worth of talk accompanied by his slides about the Tuskegee Airmen generally and his specific experiences. After his presentation, the club presented Col. Holliman with a 1/48th scale model, built by Daryl Johnson, of the P-51 he flew. Then, Ken Jernstedt, Flying Tiger (AVG) ace and Republic Aviation test pilot, who later served 22 years in the Oregon Legislature, talked of his experiences in becoming a Marine aviator, his change from Marine aviator to service in the AVG, how he came to be invited to become a Republic Aviation test pilot, and some of his experiences testing the P-47 and variants along with other types of aircraft during his 3-1/2 years with Republic. After his presentation, the club presented Mr. Jernstedt with a 1/48th scale model, built by yours truly, of the XP-47J which was one of the aircraft he test flew while at Republic. Both Col. Holliman and Mr. Jernstedt were consulted before the models were built in order to ensure the models accurately represented the colors and markings of the aircraft at the time these men flew them.
At the end of the show, the Museum manager was asked it he would like to do another Recon with OHMS next year. He just smiled and nodded his head. Guess the Recon was a success on all fronts. And, thanks to all of you who helped put the "go" into the show; you earned a solid "A"!
The following individuals, organizations or companies provided a sponsorship package or were vendors for the Recon. OHMS and this site thank them and encourages patronage of the services of all of them.