Bottom line to this entire discussion is that the EBT is PRIVATELY OWNED and as
such is not required to cater to the whims, regulations, suggestions or whatever else is
being "offered" to the OWNERS.
Basically, the EBT is the world's largest train layout wholly owned by PRIVATE INDIVIDUALS
and as such, one must abide by their wishes no matter how much we (who DO NOT own or
operate it) may not agree with or like it!
Maybe someday the Kovalchiks will divest themselves of the EBT for any number of reasons.
And MAYBE then, hopefully, a knowledgeable, benevolent and financially solvent organization
will step in and pick up where the Kovalchiks will leave off....MAYBE. All things in life are fluid!
For now, we should go to the EBT as often as possible to experience the REAL history of a bygone
era and also to give financial and moral support to the owners Kovalchik. And if one feels one
wants to do more, then feel free to VOLUNTEER and contribute some "sweat equity" by swinging
a spike maul, hand-humping some ties into place, scraping rust and repainting rolling stock or
THEN...MAYBE I'll take what is being said here and at other "arm-chair arenas" with more than
a grain of salt!
OBTW...While not having personal access to railroads or rolling stock of my own, I DO understand
the Kovalchiks position of ownership of historical artifacts. I personally privately own and operate
several large pieces of historic fire apparatus which require similar skillsets and machinery
to maintain in operable and SAFE condition. I often "pick and choose" as to how and where I will
operate my equipment, just as the Kovalchiks do, because they are mine and I don't necessarily want to
deal with others' "suggestions" concerning their use. For a LITTLE while longer, at least, the owners
of PRIVATE PROPERTY in this country can still enjoy that right. Although some, who have even posted
here, seem to think that if a PRIVATE OWNER doesn't choose to cater to a NON-OWNER'S tastes,
then the NON-OWNERS can merely employ various means to "take" said property! ("imminent domain")
99% of people have NO idea of the time, expense and personal commitment required to own, repair,
restore and just maintain large historical artifacts. The fabrication pipelines are usually long-gone,
replacement parts non-existant, repairmen long-gone and expenses astronomical merely to stabilize
and artifact or structure! Try doing this "solo" and THEN post here about the "rousing success" and
financial "gold-mine" of such a venture! I won't even begin to address the ancillary expenses such as
fuel, support services, insurance, licenses, etc.!
The issue that matters most is what the KOVALCHIKS want to do with THEIR PROPERTY! Remember.
Those who visit the EBT and ride the trains and tour the facilities are GUESTS of the Kovalchiks!
As such, we should be GOOD guests and GRATEFUL guests and show our SUPPORT by patronizing
their facilities and being happy to have benefited from their hospitality. The Kovalchiks can just as
easily (and LEGALLY) close the gates, turn off the lights, post "No Trespass" signs and dismantle the
railroad for the scrap metal within.
When one is a GUEST in another's house, then the GUEST must abide by the HOST'S wishes!