FOURTH REUNION


| July/August 1972



The Little Engine

Keith Oderkirk's Steam Meet-March 1972 ''Smoky Joe'', The Little Engine That Could! It heads a train that ravels a circular track one-half mile in length. Handsomely supplies the something missing from many Engine Meets. Courtesy of James M. Barnhart, 375

James M. Barnhart

3746 Winter Garden Road, Orlando, Florida 32805.

Keith Oderkirk held his 4th Annual Central Florida's Steam-Gas Show March 24, 25, 26, 1972, on his Museum Grounds about a half mile north of the Haines City limits on US 17-92.

This was my third visit there, and the third time I over-ran the entrance and got directed back by a good Samaritan station. I have begged Mr. Oderkirk to erect a road-sign of a size commensurate with the excellence of his place. Even without the engines, and attendant machinery, the museum is a place in which all steam engine fans, who are basically old-timers, should revel. It houses the items that old-timers (the writer is 81) love to see.

A traveler with a trailer would find the Oderkirk Grounds, 'park' is probably the word, a mecca. Not only is he in secure surroundings here, but is in easy driving distance of half of Florida's major attractions.

Another point: The folks one meets here are ''the right kind of people'. Meaning: Raised in the backwoods like I was. But not so far back that there were not plenty of steam engines. And those steam engines are making a strong come-back today. But mostly in the 4-inch scale size (one-third full size). But many of these 'apartment size' engines are so well and carefully made that many of them could be mistaken for their 'grandfather', were no man near to verify size.