††††††††††† This month, if I havenít spoken to you yet, I hope that the holiday season was safe and healthy for you and your family.† I also hope that youíve received every present that you had dreamed of, of course.† Now that the holiday season is behind us itís time to start planning for the upcoming spring season.
††††††††††† As you well know we have many projects at the Museum, both old ones to be completed and many new ones with the coming of spring.† Of course once again I need your input, support, and help to succeed with them.† Some of my priorities for this coming year will be finishing the lettering on the New Haven Boxcar and completing a cosmetic restoration on the 1402.† Our restoration staff has done an incredible job of repairing the roof on the engine to date.† I would also like us to finish erecting the temporary storage shed by the fall of 2005.† Also realize there will be other priorities that must fit in between these projects in that we do continue to grow and must keep upgrading our trackage and exhibit areas overall.
††††††††††† With the New Year we are also going to rekindle our record of the volunteered time spent on the various projects going on at the Museum.† This had been done in the past but we lost track of it and our volunteers stopped logging in their hours, myself included.† Keeping this log will be very important to us in the grant writing process.† There will be logbooks both in the station and new yard office at the turntable for your convenience to keep record of your hours.† Iím sure that weíll all be quite surprised at the hundreds of hours that weíve accumulated working and keeping our Museum moving forward.
To tie these hours into an incentive program we are also in the process of beginning a Volunteer Acknowledgement Reward Program. This is a small way of showing our appreciation and gratitude for the work and hours that you as a volunteer have contributed to the Museum.† Everyone who works and volunteers for the Museum will be part of this new program that will start within the next few months.† An example of this program will be if youíve accumulated a certain amount of hours, you will be eligible for a gift, the more hours the better the gift.† I will update you and explain the details of this program as it unfolds.†
In closing Iím looking forward to an early spring and continuing our momentum that weíve started this last year.† I will finally add that the Museum has never been as successful as we were this last season and I am very proud of our volunteerís efforts to get to this stage.†††
Keep up the good work and thank you for your service.