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A chance to make a real differance (up on the soap box just this once)

Friends and colleagues,

Most of you don’t know this but I have been working as a mentor at The Howard Area Community Centers “Computer Clubhouse” for a couple of years now. I’m teaching kids who have very little resources how to use technology to carve out a better life. The fact that it keeps the kids off the streets after school is a side benefit.

The Howard area community center (HACC) has been serving the poor families of Rogers Park and their children for over 40 years.

Well, that might be coming to an end or at least the youth services part of it.

The state of Illinois has not kept its funding up to date and are more than 6 months behind, with no relief in site.

To be concise, HACC is out of money and will be facing an end to youth services within the next 30 days. You would be shocked to know how little money is involved. The programs can be saved for less than $10k

These programs as worth saving, more that a hundred kids age 9 to 19 come through our doors.

So I’m calling on you my friends and colleagues to join together and help save this needed safe haven.

On this web page there is a donate button. From now till the end of May every donation will go directly to Howard area youth services.

We have an offer of matching funds so every dollar counts as two. I will keep the records available and will post progress reports on a weekly basis. Donations can also be sent directly to HACC youth services vie their web site .


As a community of model railroaders, hobbyists, Artists, Musicians and Teachers, we can do this.

Thanks for your help

Thom Miecznikowski


New kits are making an appearance.

Just a quick note. A couple of brand new kits and one classic are now available for download at our web  I love being able to put up new kits and not have to wait till I can justify mass burning disks.  The first kit is a nifty little yard shed.  Next we have a reproduction of a mine shed outside Silver City NV and our most popular early kit, which hasn’t been available in a long time is back.  The Jefferson Ice Co, as it stood in DesPlaines IL up until a year ago, when it was torn down.  The Western Store and its mirror image counterpart will be available in the next couple of weeks, so anyone who did not take advantage of the freebie will be able to get it for a very low price. Thom


A slice out of time by John Flemming

Here’s a pic sent by John to show his virtualized version of our latest freebie.  He tells us it represents January 30th 1927 in a light snow.  John’s V scale railroad models a real line during the year 1927.  He has it programed to reproduce the real weather conditions that exhisted on each day of the year.



Today marks another milestone in the expansion of our ability to provide you with the best in cardstock models and texture sheets.  There is an announcement on the HOME & TEXTURE pages, letting you know that all of the textures you have enjoyed, can now be purchased on line and immediately downloaded.

Many of you have asked for this feature and even though it took us a while to figure out how to make it work,  IT”S DONE!

If you go to the “TEXTURES” page, you will see the usual thumbnails that have been there since we started.  BUT now, when you click on them, in stead of just getting a bigger picture, you get a much bigger, better picture and “ADD TO CART” buttons that you can click to purchase the texture.  Clicking on any of the buttons will take you to a “SHOPPING CART” page and from there you may purchase the item either with Pay-Pal or a credit card.  Those of you who still wish to pay by check or money order will have to use our “CONTACT” page to email us for instructions.

Please note that while we really try to get things perfect right from the beginning, we know that “stuff happens”.  If you have any concerns or difficulties, please contact us immediately and describe the situation so that we can make it better.

One of the big advantages, to you and us, of this additional feature, is that we can now make more items easily availabel in a lot less time.  Very soon you will see textures show up that you haven’t seen before.

And speaking of more items, start watching the “MODELS” page.  Downloadable kits will be showing up very soon!

Thanks for your continued support.

Dave & Thom Miecznikowski

P.S.  10:03 PM, 04/18/2010  I just finished making the Mercantile downloadable

10:45 PM, 04/22/2010: The Silver Sity Mine Building and the Roadside Stand are now downloadable.

12:51 AM, 04/24/2010: Plant #2 is now downloadable.

05:17 PM, 04/24/2010: Jefferson Ice Co. in now downloadable.

02:12 AM, 04/25/2010: Yard Shed, Insulbrick & Frame Garages are now downloadable.