17 September 2015

Back to Warm Weather, and the IPMS/Gateway Meeting

Back to work this past Monday (14 September), after quite a good weekend. Plenty busy in the morning, as usual, and leveling off as the day went on. Work has been going well. Warm weather has returned after a mild stretch, with temperatures approaching 90 degrees F (33 degrees C).

Flexing out Tuesday afternoon (as I am working this Saturday morning), I relaxed at home, then opened up Calvary Presbyterian Church's fellowship hall for the IPMS/Gateway (http://ipms-gateway.com) meeting. We had a nice turnout of entries in the quarterly contest, including two of mine. I entered my Jupiter C model--the one that took second in its category at the Regional last Saturday--in the Made in America special category. Neither model won, but at least I got some points for entering this contest. We also had a wrap up of our very successful Regional.

Off work today, I did my laundry and going tonight to the Missouri Aviation Historical Society (http://moavhist.org) meeting, with a presentation on airshow photography. Should be interesting. Also, I hope to get materials together to put together the Society's member newsletter, Middle Marker. It will be quite a challenge, but I believe I am up for it.


13 September 2015

A Terrific Scale Modeling Show

A week ago Saturday (5 Sept.), I co-hosted "Writer's Block," from Autistic People. Host Tim Pylypiuk and I discussed the unique languages of some literature, including works of William Shakespeare and Anthony Burgess' novel "A Clockwork Orange." You can listen to the archived program (and download it for podcast) here: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/autistic-people-/2015/09/05/writers-block-loose-lips--10am-pstradio-drama-grooming-hour-11am-pst. The next edition of "Writer's Block" is Saturday, 3 October, at 10 am Pacific Time (Noon, Central Time; 1800 hours GMT).

After the show, I went to an ATM to get some cash for the weekend, and I picked up several copies of the South County Times. That newspaper had a piece on International Plastic Modelers' Society (IPMS)/Gateway Chapter and the Regional Contest we're hosting a week later. The newspaper interviewed me and others from the club for the story, which was prompted by show information I shared with the paper's calendar section. It was a very nice article and the club members who saw it agreed. Here's the online article: http://www.southcountytimes.com/Articles-Features-c-2015-09-03-196405.114137-sub-Plastic-Modelers-Share-OldSchool-Art-Form.html.

I went to St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in St. Louis' Central West End (CWE) for its 98th annual Greek Festival. It's a great ethnic festival, with food, music, dance, crafts for sale, and church tours. I have gone the past few years and have enjoyed it every time. After spending time at the Festival, I walked up Euclid Avenue to Left Bank Books (http://www.left-bank.com/), an independent book store, where I browsed for a while before walking back down Euclid. After having a ginger ale at Coffee Cartel (http://thecoffeecartel.com/), I walked back to my car and drove home.

I chilled out at home that Sunday and enjoyed some more of the Labor Day holiday on that Monday (7 Sept.). (The rental car branch was closed that day.) Late that morning, I joined members of the St. Louigans at Worldwide Technology Soccer Park in Fenton to help them paint two banners for Saint Louis FC's final regular season matches this month.

Back to work the next day, it was VERY busy, with much traffic coming in (mostly renters back from the holiday weekend), plus renters getting vehicles for the start of the short week. We got through it, though, and the rest of the week was much calmer by comparison.

On my off day Thursday, I went to Spirit of St. Louis Airport in Chesterfield (http://spiritairport.com/spiritairport/index.jsp) to see aircraft from the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) on display this past week. The three World War II-era aircraft I saw were a Beech C-45 Expeditor transport, a General Motors (Grumman) TBM Avenger torpedo bomber, and the star attraction, a Boeing B-29 Superfortress named "Fifi." I saw these aircraft on the ramp and took a good number of pictures. I also entered the B-29's cockpit and admired the view. It was a great time for the aircraft buff. More on the CAF's aircraft on tour here: http://www.airpowersquadron.org/.

Yesterday (12 Sept.), I was at the Holiday Inn St. Louis SW--Route 66 in Sunset Hills, Missouri (http://www.holidayinn.com/hotels/us/en/st-louis/stlsw/hoteldetail?qAdlt=1&qBrs=6c.hi.ex.rs.ic.cp.in.sb.cw.cv.ul.vn&qChld=0&qFRA=1&qGRM=0&qPSt=0&qRRSrt=rt&qRef=df&qRms=1&qRpn=1&qRpp=12&qSHp=1&qSmP=3&qSrt=sBR&qWch=0&srb_u=1&icdv=99504440&siclientid=9948&sitrackingid=733967223&glat=SEAR&dp=true&icdv=99504440). This was for the International Plastic Modelers' Society (IPMS) Region 5 Convention, hosted by IPMS/Gateway. (Region 5 was made up of IPMS/USA chapters in the Midwestern US.) It was a terrific show all around. I took money from attendees at one of the two entrances, and later helped judge the model contest. I don't have figures for how many people attended, but it was a lot for a show of this sort. People came from as far away as Minnesota and Kentucky for this event. We did have nearly 400 contest entries, including four of mine. My 1:48 scale Jupiter C rocket took second place in the Real Space category (within Space and Science Fiction)--my first regional IPMS contest award since a second back in 1995, also in St. Louis. No complaints from attendees and we all had a great time. We can't do much better than that.

After the show, I had dinner at Smugala's Pizza Pub in Sunset Hills (http://smugalas.com/smugalassunsethills) before boarding the shuttle bus for Worldwide Technology Soccer Park. There, I cheered on Saint Louis FC as they defeated Charlotte Independence 2-0 in the next to last match of the season. They had a record crowd of over 5,600 for the match. Yes, the St. Louigans were there in full force. Saint Louis FC (http://saintlouisfc.com/landing/index) finishes the season this Saturday night at home against Louisville City FC. By the way, this past week I renewed my season ticket for 2016.

Several of us in IPMS/Gateway were at the club's annual picnic, hosted by Brad and Julie Vaughn in House Springs. We enjoyed a barbecue lunch and good company. Our club's next meeting is this Tuesday night at 7:30 pm at Calvary Presbyterian Church in Mehlville. More on the club here: http://www.ipms-gateway.com/index.html.