Michigan Get-Togeher 2019

Can you remember a beautiful September day? One of those found in the upper Midwest when the sky is clear, the temperature is just warm enough, and friends come from miles away to share common interests. Well, that was September 14 at Jim Dietrich's home in central Michigan.

This year's gathering was international! A young German couple, Lothar and Anna, who refer to member Utz Schmidt as "Opa" (grandpa), came with Utz and Shirley. We welcomed Larry and Dee Dee Hasselmann, new members from the west side of Michigan. It was good to see Kurt and Ann Beyreis, travelling from Virginia, and although it was not their first-ever Michigan meeting, it had been a while since they last joined us.

The day counted as a mini family reunion for host Jim, as his daughter, son-in-law and son were all there to lend their support. Rounding out the guest list were Marty and Rich Stimpson, Amy and Gregg Motter, Jan and Bill Berning, Mary and Ben Smith, Joyce Glazier, Jack Mickevich and Bev and I, bringing the grand total to 24. A fine group for a great day filled with socializing and scale talk.

The day started with folks getting acquainted with the newbies and caught up with the regulars. And, because you asked, yes – lots of food! Jim and family provided the base: a load of chicken, a refrigerator of beverages and some go-withs. Then, the rest of it simply appeared. It was more than enough to stave off food deprivation. The “icing on the cake” was the Welcome Scalies cake compliments of Bev. The verdict was it not only looked great, but was delicious as well.

The red computing scale that Jim showed generated a good amount of discussion. The two cone-shaped cylinders were sold as an attachment for weighing scales. Introduced in 1889, this attachment was patented as an improved price indicator for scales by Lucius L. Wands. A very unusual scale!

This regional meeting was somewhat of a preview for the 2020 Detroit Convention since we'll be visiting Jim's vast collection next May. I know of three one-of-a-kind scales in his possession, and there are new discoveries every time I visit. 

The Michigan group has been doing these gatherings for quite a while now, and the fun and camaraderie never gets old. We didn’t quite get around to scheduling next year’s meeting, but will let you know the when and where down the road.

Submitted by Greg Moss