Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Models, models and more models

As many of you would know, or assume, I've been a collector of airline memorabilia now for some 34 years. Ever since my father gave me a pair of North Central Kiddie Wings, I've been 'hooked.' Anything attached to 'Herman,' you name it, I've most likely got it, or have found it! Pure luck sometimes I guess, but it's still my connection to the 'love affair' with North Central that keeps me going forward in the pursuit of finding that rarest of items.

On one particular journey, I stumbled upon a little known store in Apple Valley one day in the late 80's called 'Airways Gifts.' Walking in the doors was a joy to see; North Central and Republic Airlines' memorabilia everywhere including models, photos, pins, shirts, etc. If I'd known ahead of time what I'd see that day, I would've brought my entire bank account with me!

I walked out about an hour later with numerous photos and a few pins of the Convair 580 and 'Herman' logo, satisfied in the fact I'd FOUND a place that shared my interests. Sad to say, soon after, the store closed and I wondered where I'd find such an outlet again.

Alas, along comes the computer age! Doing a little searching and digging, I discovered my old store had gone online. With a few contact emails to my good friend, Keith Oberg, who owns/operates the business, I obtained my first Mahogany model; a 1/100 Scale Convair 580, in North Central colors (of course). I loved it. From then on out, I became a regular customer, purchasing more models, pins, color prints, photos, and even coffee mugs. That was 10 years ago, and to this date, I have a total of 34 Mahogany models...with more on order. :)
(I've added some of my model photos above-the first photo is a model of the Cessna UC-78 'Bobcat' that flew for Wisconsin Central prior to the L-10A purchases)

Do give Keith and his website a look if you have some's worth the trip!

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