The Sunshine Express

Region Convention

Celebration of Model Contest

As always, we’ll have our model contest. Whether you’re a novice getting started in modeling or a seasoned pro, the contest is for you. Enter your model for judging or Merit Awards for the Achievement Program or enter your work as a display only model for everyone to see your work. This year the new Program for judging will be employed. There will be the standard judging for Merit Awards for the Achievement Program all other judgings will be in two categories, Master & Craftsman.


This event is a celebration of the modeling and art of Railroads and Railroading.  This includes models, photos, passes, arts and crafts of all aspects of railroading.

The Sunshine Region of the National Model Railroad Association closely follows the process and procedures of the National Celebration of Models and the Achievement Program.


Use this link to get to the National webpages

The Model Contest


The Model Contest portion of the Celebration of Models held during the yearly Regional Convention differs from National in that every effort is made to allow all modelers to submit models to the contest and compete for awards based on their skill levels. The only way to improve one's modeling skills is to build models. Using the annual contest not only challenges a modeler to do better, but also provides feedback and recommendations to improve these skills.


To that end, the Regional contest is broken into Skilled Masters and Craftsman.

Skilled Masters are those individuals that have attained the Achievement Program Certification in the category of the model being entered. An example here is that an individual with the AP Certification Master Builder - Cars, is considered a Skilled Master. Models submitted by Master’s are scored against other Masters. Craftsmen are therefore scored against other non-AP Certificate holders.


The Photo Contest


The Photo Contest is run in accordance with the National Photo Contest.

Details for the Photo Contest are found 


Button judging

Code of Conduct


This comprises a pledge that contest judges, contest staff and contest entrants are expected to observe during the conduct of the contests.

Code of Conduct details are found at

Eligibility and Entry information is found at
Entry Forms are found at


Contest Rules


Contest Rules are the same for Masters and Craftsmen and are found at



All judging is done in accordance with the Achievement Program Judging Guidelines with the exception that the maximum point score on the scratch-built factor for models entered in the Kit Built classification is limited to 8 points.

Details of the Guidelines are found at



Awards for models are separated by Craftsmen and Master. Awards are presented to the winners of the competitive events in recognition of their excellence in modeling, photography, and crafting.


Modelers may earn enough points for merit awards in the Achievement Program (AP) which are issued by the Sunshine Region AP Chairman.

Two BEST IN SHOW awards are presented for the highest-scoring models in the Craftsmen and Master Skill level.

The President of the Sunshine Region will conduct his/her personal evaluation and present the PRESIDENTS AWARD to the model he determines merits that recognition. All models in the Celebration of Models are eligible for this single award.

First, Second and Third place awards are given to models in each of the nine categories as shown below in accordance with the ranking of their points scores. One complete set is given for the Scratch Built classification and for the Kit Built classification for each skill level Craftsmen and Master.


All models achieving 87.5 or more points are eligible for a merit award except for the display or diorama category for which there is no AP merit award.

  • Steam Locomotives

  • Diesel & Other Locomotives

  • Passenger Car

  • Freight Cars

  • Caboose

  • Non-Revenue

  • Traction

  • Structures

  • Displays

The Peoples Choice Award is based on the popular vote of the attendees to the convention.

Januray 1, 2019 Count Started at 4370

Januray 1, 2020 Count Started at 7687

Copyright 2018 by NMRA SUNSHINE REGION, INC.