11.19.2011

the incredible shrinking train show

The 2-day Toronto Christmas Train Show has diminished in size yet again. Fewer vendors, fewer exhibitors, and fewer attendees. The admission price remains high, and the on-site food remains poor value for money.

The organisers saw fit to call it quits at 4:00 PM today, an hour earlier than usual. No reason was given.

At least one vendor was overheard to say, 'if this year is worse than last, it's my last show here'. Not a good sign.

Due to overlapping schedules this weekend, for once I wasn't present for assembly and will not be there for tear-down of the layout. I managed to make enough time to operate (to allow for a break for the other guys) and share a meal with the crew today. I enjoyed the partial day out with my friends very much, but the meager offerings and reduced overall footprint this year is the least inspiring yet.

With the recent demise of the CHRA Spring Train Show, this is the last big event left in the area. No attraction sets it off from other shows. Little or no promotion seems to be done to encourage attendance. There is no incentive for exhibitors to continue their efforts. What is there to tempt any but the die-hards?

If this is the Christmas Show, where is Santa? Ah yes, he's off at his parade downtown. Perhaps this show could be better timed to ensure his availability? Maybe his people could contact the show people and make suitable arrangements...

Why so few vendors, exhibitors and attendees? It's a good bet that half of the candidates were at the other end of the city, visiting the 2-day Whitby Train Show which, for some bizarre and unfathomable reason, is scheduled to occur on the same weekend for the 3rd or 4th year in a row. How this benefits either event is entirely beyond me.

I greatly doubt that anyone will mourn the ultimate loss of this particular show; it has virtually ceased to serve a useful or constructive purpose. A shame, really. Most of the locals used to look forward to this annual event.

2 comments:

Tin Goat said...

I've said it before, and I'll say it again...

CARM and NMRA have to kiss and make up. Then they can jointly take over the Toronto Christmas Train Show:
http://humbervalleysimcoerailway.blogspot.com/2011/01/to-carm-or-not-to-carm.html

bobcatt said...

I'm not sure who would take it over in its current state. The venue may have to be changed; I don't know what the cost of holding an event in the that building is, but it can't be inexpensive. But the biggest task would be throwing off the 'old ways' of doing things and bringing people back to sell and exhibit.