Statement Regarding a Boston Trolley & Transit Meet in 2014

To our friends and supporters,

For many years, the Boston Chapter NRHS (NRHS) in conjunction with the Boston Street Railway Association (BSRA) and the Bay State Society of Model Engineers (BSSME) have participated in Boston Trolley Meets, led by the NRHS. After 2008, the NRHS indicated that it could no longer continue the meets on its own because of insufficient volunteers to run these events. In 2010, the BSRA, the Seashore Trolley Museum (STM), and the BSSME met with the NRHS and agreed to continue the Boston Trolley Meet as the Boston Trolley and Transit Meet. In 2012, the same four organizations held another Boston Trolley and Transit Meet, at this time noting reduced dealer interest and paid admissions. The 2012 meet ran at a loss and after this STM withdrew as an active participant. This year, BSRA decided to study the possibility of a 2014 meet.

Past Trolley Meets have always relied on income from rental of sales tables to dealers and vendors, who provided necessary funds for operation of the meet. Unfortunately, many of the dealers who have displayed and sold their goods at past meets are no longer in business, or have told us they are unable to come to future meets. For these and other reasons we have been unable to get commitments from enough vendors to assure the financial success of a 2014 Meet. At the same time, costs to rent function halls and other venues have been steadily increasing. After conducting a detailed preliminary financial analysis, we have decided, unfortunately, that it is not feasible to operate a Meet in 2014.

This is a sign of the times. Railroad and trolley show attendance in recent years has been declining. While we would have liked to help continue this long tradition, our inability to make the event at least break even has brought us to this conclusion. The door remains open for a possible event in 2016, when economic conditions and future studies may present a more favorable outcome.

Thank you for your support through the years, and we hope to see you at future events in years to come.

The Boston Trolley & Transit Meet Organizing Committee:
Boston Street Railway Association, Inc.
Seashore Trolley Museum
Bay State Society of Model Engineers
National Railway Historical Society, Boston Chapter

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