Winterail long has been THE premiere railroad photography and railroadiana show on the West Coast. Indeed, it spawned a number of similar events around the country. It features beautifully produced rail photography shows set to music and often with narration—very similar to what Ken Burns made popular on PBS with his Civil War series and later topics.
Winterail has long been held on the second Saturday of March in Stockton, CA. Producer Vic Neves retired and left California this past year and located in the middle of the Willamette Valley. Since no other Californians wanted to take on the production role and keep it in California, Winterail moved up here to Oregon with Vic.
This weekend, Winterail officially opened up in its new home at Corvallis High School, now on the third weekend of March to take advantage of Corvallis schools’ Spring Break.
I was delighted to return to regular attendance at Winterail as had been my practice while living in California. I have known Vic Neves for decades and now operate with him on several local layouts—including my own SP Cascade Line. It was great to renew friendships with the Winterail “Roadies,” as many of the regulars made the trek up from California to help Vic put on the event.
I also was delighted to see what had become of Corvallis High School, rebuilt, ca, 2005. I am a CHS Spartan and alum from many decades ago. I am proud to say the taxpayers of Corvallis have produced a beautiful facility to replace the hodge-podge of construction era (Great Depression WPA to 1960s) facilities I knew well. Comments heard from my Oregon and California friends indicate they were impressed similarly. The CHS facilities are a far cry from the aging facilities in Stockton. My photos in this blog post suffer from hand-held in low light, but I think they still convey the event and venue.
Vic and Annie Neves welcoming the crowd to Winterail in the Corvallis High School auditorium. The facility seats 650 in roomy, comfortable seats.
The photography shows are preceded (and in parallel) with a railroadina sale. Aisles were ample so the crowd could linger with individual vendors without being jostled continuously.
Another view of the auditorium, as the crowd began gathering for the first show. No bad seats in the house!
Ticket sales were above 350 (preregistration). I suspect those sales will grow much higher next year!
Winterail 2017 will be March 18, 2017.