We represent a highly dedicated group of model railroaders in the Hampton Roads area who are planning to create a new city attraction – a model railroad museum. Unique to this area but modeled after the San Diego Model Railroad Museum (https://www.sdmrm.org/), this facility will contain multiple large train displays in all the most common scales to create a fun, entertaining, and educational experience for people of all ages.
Some of the displays will be interactive and allow visitors to run trains themselves, and some will be for display only and operated by attendants. In addition, there will be static displays to demonstrate the history of railroads in Virginia, a collection of historical artifacts, and a video room to show short railroad-related documentaries and model railroading tutorials. There will be clinic rooms where model railroaders will demonstrate a variety of educational disciplines required for building railroads, promoting the S.T.E.A.M. concepts (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics). We will have free school tours and will even have a space for students to come in and build their own layouts. A library containing books, magazines and computers will be available for those wishing to do their own research into prototypical as well as model railroads.
This 501(c)(3) non-profit museum will be run by volunteer model railroaders who are great teachers and anxious to show and talk about their railroads to anyone who will listen. We will include school tours once a week and will be open to the public for four days a week. We anticipate funding to be provided by admission fees, memberships, donations, grants, advertising, sponsorships, a gift shop, and loans, if necessary.
Our business plan is already fully developed, and we are incorporated in the state of Virginia under the name Model Railroad Museum of Hampton Roads, Inc. Our 501(c)(3) non profit status has already been approved by the IRS.
We are hoping to contract with one of the cities of Hampton Roads, or with a local company or organization that could help us by providing a facility large enough to accomplish our goals at a discounted rate that would allow us to be successful financially. At the same time, the museum would benefit the city or organization by providing them with a tax advantage and an attraction to other nearby businesses and restaurants. We have already met with the mayors of two Hampton Roads cities, who have both responded favorably and indicated their willingness to help in our endeavor.
We would be happy to meet with you or your organization at any time to provide a presentation and discuss this exciting project further.
If you are as enthusiastic about this endeavor as we are and would like to provide a tax-deductible construction donation that would go directly toward developing the location and initial construction of layouts, please send an email to MRMHR@mrmhr.org or click on the button below. Any amount would be acceptable and will provide you with special benefits and/or recognition as a founding donor at the museum.
100% of these funds will be held in escrow and used only for the development of the Museum. The managers and operators of the museum are strictly volunteers and do not receive any portion of the donations.
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