Piedmont Junction
2024 MER Convention


The CAROLINA PIEDMONT DIVISION invites you to come to the Heart of Carolina for the 2024 MER Convention to be held the weekend of October 17-20. We have scheduled four days of model railroading activities: clinics, contests, modular layouts, a silent auction, layout tours, prototype tours, a banquet with featured speaker and awards presentations. There will be much to see, learn, do and enjoy.

This will be the fourth MER Convention hosted by the Carolina Piedmont Division, a major high-tech part of the country with a long tradition of railroading. The Research Triangle area of North Carolina has been consistently rated by Money magazine as one of the best places to live in the country.

Many clinics and several prototype tours are lined up, along with an extensive self-guided tour of home layouts in the area. Operating sessions are being planned, including operations on the T-TRAK layout at the Train Show. The usual NMRA contests will be held. Festivities include a banquet with a featured after dinner speaker.

NEW DATE: October 17-20, 2024

Activities will center around the Marriott at Research Triangle Park, Durham, North Carolina. The hotel is located just off Interstate 40 just west of Raleigh. Our confirmed convention rate of $79 per night (plus tax). Up to two people can stay at that rate. Nearby are many eating establishments and regional shopping centers to accommodate other needs. $79 rate cut-off date is Tuesday, September 17th, 2024. 

Make your plans now to join us October 17 - 20, 2024 at Piedmont Junction! 

Hotel Registration Link:

Book your group rate for Mid Eastern Region of the National Model Railroad Association  

Marriott can extend the rate to the day before and after for guests.
If you call 919-941-6200, they will make the change to the existing hotel reservation booking number. Please have your hotel reservation number available when making this special request. 

Carl Hollowell, President of Aberdeen & Rockfish Railroad will be our keynote speaker

Following in the footsteps of his father, Carl started his railroad career by accepting a job with RailTex during the acquisition of the South Carolina Centrail Railroad in Hartsville, South Carolina. Over the next 18 years, Carl received various transfers and promotions, within RailTex, leading to assignments in San Antonio, Texas; Carthage, Missouri; Petersburg, Indiana; Salt Lake City, Utah; Tengiz, Kazakhstan and Ahoski, North Carolina. After the consolidation of RailTex and RailAmerica in 2000, Carl accepted the position of Vice President of Western Operations for OmniTrax in Denver, Colorado.

Returning to the Carolinas in 2006, Carl held the position of Vice-President and General Manager of the Aberdeen, Carolina & Western Railroad in Candor, North Carolina until 2018. In 2019, Carl accepted the job as President of the Aberdeen & Rockfish Railroad.

Carl, his wife Michelle and their four children (Alexandria, Dalton, Colby and Wyatt) enjoy spending time on the family farm in eastern North Carolina and on the beaches of the Outer Banks.