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Meeting Timetable

The "Semaphore"

The "Waybill"

Local RR Related Events

Model Contest Photos

Train Photos

High Wheeler 2016 Train Show

NS&W Modular Group

Clinic Notes

National NMRA Conventions

Model Contest Rules


Local Hobby Shops

About the Fox Valley Division

Board of Directors

Executive Handbook

National Model Railroad Association

Midwest Region

Copyright Notice


~~~ Company News & Activities ~~~

Ingrid Drozdak presented her clinic on "What Makes a Contest Photo a Winner" at the November meet. Many thanks to Ingrid for putting together this comprehensive clinic.
Click Here for a PDF copy of Ingrid's Clinic Presentation.


See Jeff Jarr's clinic on the GOLDEN SPIKE APPLICATION


Check out the new North Shore & Western Modular Group web page! Click to follow the link.


Bring a Friend

Bring a friend to a meet and your friend will have a chance to win a free 6 month Rail Pass membership. One free Rail Pass membership will be offered to a randomly chosen non-member guest at future regular membership meets. This drive will run until further notice.


The FVD supports youth activities and the division will reimburse members for the limited donation of materials and tools to teach the art and craft of model railroading to young modelers. Recently, the Board of Directors enacted a new Youth Fund Reimbursement Policy. Please click here to read the full policy before initiating a program requiring financial assistance.


Did you know that both the Fox Valley Division and the Midwest Region have budgeted funds for "Make & Take" model building programs?? If you know of, or are involved with, an organized group of children in the age range of about 7 through 16, who are located in McHenry, Cook, Lake, and or Kane counties in northeastern Illinois give this activity consideration.  We'll send some experienced modelers, as well as tools and a carton of easy-to-build kits to your meeting. The program takes about an hour or so of hands-on creative activity. We'll provide a short introduction to model trains and then take your group through the steps of making their own model train cars to take home. The division donates the cars, a short piece of display track and brings tools to make the event a success. We have found that children thoroughly enjoy this easy introduction to model railroading. "Where can I get more track?" is the most frequently asked question. We can support one or two of these programs a year depending on the group size. Contact us if you are interested.

~~~ Meeting & Activity Timetable ~~~
Regular meetings are held from 1:30 PM thru 4:30 PM, at the Gary Morava Recreation Center, 110 W. Camp McDonald Road, Prospect Heights, IL 60070. All activities and dates are subject to change, so please check meeting listings regularly for any change in activity, location or time. Click here to display a map to the Gary Morava Recreation Center. Unless otherwise noted, meetings are free and guests are always welcome.

November 22, 2015
Clinic presentation:
What Makes a Contest Photo a Winner!
Presented by Ingrid Drozdak
Highway or railroad bridge with Men Working on the bridge - 144 square inch scene minimum.
Contest awards and refreshments.

December 13, 2015 - Note: 1:00 pm Start.
Clinic presentation:
Prototype slide presentation "BN Black Hills coal train/EJ&E combo" by Don Cook


Holiday theme
: Any train related Model that has a holiday theme - 144 square inch scene minimum.
Contest awards, Lunch and refreshments.

January 17, 2016
Clinic presentation: George K. will do the clinic on DCC Function Mapping with JMRI Decoder Pro.
A model or prototype photo taken by yourself.
Contest awards and refreshments.

February 21, 2016
Clinic presentation:
"Keeping the line open, manufactured and home built plows and flangers" by John Drozdak

Lighted railroad signal, signal bridge, or Grade Crossing, etc. - 144 square inch scene minimum.
Contest awards and refreshments.

March 5 & 6, 2016
High Wheeler Train Show

Harper College Sports Center
Palatine, IL

April 17, 2016 - 1:00 start
This is our annual business meeting and election of officers to the positions of Superintendent and Chief Clerk.
Clinic presentation: TBA

12" x 12" mini diorama. Your choice of subject or scale.
Contest awards, lunch and refreshments.

May 15, 2016
Clinic presentation:
Prototype slide presentation "CNW System Wide" by Don Cook

Interlocking or crossing tower - 144 square inch scene minimum.
Contest awards and refreshments.

July 3 - 10, 2016
National NMRA Convention
-- "Highball to Indy"
Indianapolis, IN

See for more details.

November 2015 Contest

Category: Highway or railroad bridge with Men Working on the bridge - 144 square inch scene minimum.

1 Entry this Month!

Click here to see all the entries

1st Place

1st Place

Leif Hansen's

HOn3 Scale

Leif Hansen's "Victor Gold Mining Co" in HOn3. The module had lights in the mine and shed, and the sound of loading ore as well.






Click here to see all the entries

Photos courtesy of Jim Osborn

Have train or layout photos you would like to share? Send them to

Train Photos from the FVD Membership

Click on a photo to see more in the series

Rail Fun Logo View the many layout Photos from the
Midwest Region 2014 Spring Convention Rail Fun 2014
Festival of Trains FVD members Bill Boyd & Art Jones Hosted "The Festival of Passenger Trains" on February 6th, 2011 on Art's Connellsville Division of the B & O RR. 11 engineer/owners honored 13 great passenger trains. Thanks to Bill and Art for organizing the event. Photos courtesy of Jim Osborn.
EBT Loco Missing the snow?
Check out these beautiful  East Broad Top RR winter  train photos courtesy of David Crement.
Outdoor RR Walter Radtke hosted a railroad open house in August. Click here to see a few pictures of his garden railroad if you missed the event.
EBT Model RR Click on the photograph to the left to get a tour of David Crement's On3 recreation of the East Broad Top Railroad. David's On3 pike is featured in the December 2008 issue of the Semaphore.
Potato Warehouse David Leider's "Waupaca 1947" layout is featured in the October Semaphore's  "Track Treks" series. Click on the picture for an tour of David's pike filled with highly detailed structures.
Adrian Tower on Don Cook's RR The May issue of the Semaphore will feature another "Track Treks" local area layout tour. Click the thumbnail for an advanced picture tour of Don Cook's scenic Great Northern, Cascade Division pike.
Tom Schweiss' Milwaukee Road - Superior Division Follow the thumbnail link to see several pictures of Tom Schweiss' Milwaukee Road -- Superior Division Layout. Learn details about Tom's pike in this month's Semaphore.
Harry Schildkraut's NY, O&W Click on this photo of Liberty, NY to visit a few scenes of Harry Schildkraut's NY, O&W model railroad. Photos courtesy of Jim Osborn.
Caernafon RR The Caernafon, Wales, UK narrow gauge railroad. Courtesy of Kurt Youngmann.
Porthmadog RR The Porthmadog, Wales, UK narrow gauge railroad. Courtesy of Kurt Youngmann.
Snowdon RR The Snowdon, Wales, UK narrow gauge cog railroad. Courtesy of Kurt Youngmann.
Slate mine RR A Welsh narrow gauge railroad serving a slate mine. Courtesy of Kurt Youngmann.
FVD Logo Have train or layout photos you would like to share? Send them to


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Arlington Heights, IL 60005-1535
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