There are many reasons. Most clubs having expenses to maintain and improve their model airport have need of revenue. A model swap meet can make a terrific fund raiser for this or any other purpose. It can also serve as an off-season gathering for your regions pilots. A time to renew friendships and refresh interest in our sport.
Having managed one of the country’s largest swap meets for well over a decade, I speak from experience. The ModelRama has celebrated it’s 13th year in 2012 with a record setting 174 table reservations. Our first two events were 80 tables (filled the hall we were using) and the event has grown steadily ever since. It’s my major volunteer effort each year to support the Dayton Wingmasters and our Model Airpark “Wingmaster Field”. No one puts on an event of this nature single handedly. Our event has enjoyed excellent support from our club members every year. We’ll talk more about Volunteers in a later post along with many other considerations like date planning, setup times/hours, important positions you’ll need volunteers for, getting the vendors, getting the swappers, getting the modelers there, selling raffle and 50/50 tickets, holding an auction, walking sales, indoor flying and more.
If your already holding a similar event, perhaps you’ll find something here to improve your results. The suggestions and ideas that follow where not arrived at out of thin air. For about a decade, Radical RC (my family business) attended 25 or more club swap meets per year. I’ve witnessed much good and some bad and have tried to combine all the best idea’s in one “Super Swap Meet”. We make adjustments every year and are always looking for a better way to do everything.
We may alter these posts at any time as knowledge and opinions evolve. Consider these a series of articles suggesting current best practices. You can rest assured however, that if you follow these guidelines, you’ll have a successful and profitable event. It will be the most popular event of the year and probably the least amount of work per $100 earned of anything your group has ever done. Give it a go!
Look for these posts to accumulate within “How To?” sub category “How: A Successful Swap Meet”.