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 Post subject: Re: Reserve military units help for museums?
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 10:15 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 8:53 pm
Posts: 130
About 25 years ago, the Oatka Depot Railroad Museum (a project of the Rochester Chapter, NRHS), which later became the Rochester and Genesee Valley Railroad Museum, had an arrangement with a local Navy SeaBee Reserve unit. This lasted for something like five years.
Their primary requirements, as I recall, were that 1) The Museum must be non-profit, and 2) The Museum needed to be able to exercise the various job / skill codes in the Unit. There were something like a dozen, or so skill codes (Heavy Equipment Operator, Welder, Carpenter, Mechanic, etc). We had a manager at the Museum who put a lot of effort into organizing the work on a given weekend, in order to exercise all of their codes. So in addition to 10 or 15 volunteers on a Saturday, we might get as many as 50 skilled SeaBees, doing any number of tasks around the Museum. A couple of them even became volunteer members, after they got to know us. It was a great boost to the Museum's projects, and we got to know a bunch of good people too. In addition, they really appreciated the effort that was put into finding appropriate work for their skills, rather than their more typical assignments of building playgrounds, and the like.
I don't recall exactly why the arrangement was terminated (possibly due to the first Gulf War ?) It was great while it lasted, though.
JR


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 Post subject: Re: Reserve military units help for museums?
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 11:11 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:19 am
Posts: 5252
Location: southeastern USA
The common thread is the "years ago". These kind of projects have been very difficult to bring about in the past decade or so - even simple rigging and moving within a town with a large military presence kind of short jobs. Unless things change, I think we should consider this option off the table and devote our efforts into other channels.

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 Post subject: Re: Reserve military units help for museums?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2017 12:24 am 

Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2012 4:32 pm
Posts: 154
To expand on what Lee Bishop posted, I seem to remember hearing stories of Nat. Guard units helping out railroad museums with crane, heavy transport, and trucking needs. The training aspect of it is spot on as well, considering the mess down in NOLA after Katrina.


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 Post subject: Re: Reserve military units help for museums?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2017 1:51 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 12:59 pm
Posts: 523
Although it may be hard to get reserve units to officially help a museum as part of their training, active military bases can still be sources of volunteers as well as being a good source of visitors.

Travis AFB is close to the Western Railway Museum, and we have had a volunteer group from there as a community service opportunity. Planning is really important for such an event, obviously.


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