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2018 MET Show

History of MET

Lynn Belanger


founder - Margaret Everett

On October 7th 1976, Margaret Everett convened a meeting at the Fairview library hoping to attract enough people to start a club in Toronto for miniature enthusiasts. Forty persons attended. The Miniature Enthusiasts of Toronto was formed. At a later meeting, Margaret's daughter, Diane Wilton, gave the first lesson in miniature making -- a book. At a later meeting, the Club learned the method used by three of its members to copy exact scale reproductions of early Canadian furniture found in museums.

At a meeting on March 29th, 1977, the Club decided to have its first miniature show and sale to be held on November 6th, 1977. As Wendy Russell said, ''The estimated cost is astronomical (well over $1,000) considering the fact that we have almost nothing in the bank! We have committees and sub-committees, there's publicity to consider, tickets to sell, organizing the work schedule, making things for the Club Sales Table, etc. What if nobody comes to our show?"

Wendy and the other members needn't have worried. Approximately 4,000 people turned up -- a lot of us couldn't even get in to the Show -- the lobby of the Hotel Triumph was packed!

Every fall (but one) since that fateful day, M.E.T. has put on an outstanding two day show. Since then we have attracted a more dedicated group of miniature collectors, both local and out-of-town, who would not miss a M.E.T. Show.

The Show was held in the Hotel Triumph up until that dreadful time in 1991 when the hotel closed and we were forced to cancel the Show that year. However, we opened again in 1992 in larger quarters at the Skyline Airport Hotel (or International Plaza Hotel, as it is now known). 1992 was also the first year that M.E.T. sponsored the Juried Show which brings in beautiful displays from all over the world. In 1996 the show was moved to the International Centre giving us more room and free parking. The year 2001 sees the M.E.T. Show returning home to the Triumph Hotel now owned by the Howard Johnson chain.

For a number of years M.E.T. donated a portion of the proceeds to a local charity, raffles at the Show have also been held in aid of a charity. Most recently, in 1999 a fully furnished and landscaped house was donated to the Starlight Children's Foundation and was auctioned off at their annual Gala. The winning bid was $4000. which the Foundation put toward granting wishes of seriously ill children. In 2000 M.E.T donated a fully furnished house to Ronald McDonald House of Toronto for the children who visited the house to play with.

The Club Projects over the years have been quite varied: a box room, a small Christmas display room, a bay window scene, a 'creative carton', a four-sided diorama on a circular base, a scene in a glass dome, a harvest table, dough box, blanket box and a dish cupboard, a front porch, a store or cafe, a potting shed, a scene in a book, a one-room cottage, a storefront, a house, a inch scale butterdish house, a gift bag scene.

M.E.T. holds meetings every month except December when we have a Holiday Dinner. There is usually a small workshop, a speaker or a slide show after the business part of the meeting. We also have an extra workshop evening when we work on club projects or have someone come in to teach us to make something. At one time, the Club held a monthly drop-in meeting at one of the local churches.

M.E.T. members have made Christmas trees for''Meals on Wheels", tote-bag favours for the children attending the Show, centrepieces and souvenirs for our Christmas dinner. In 1980 we made 1,050 tiny red aprons as tote-bag favours for the N.A.M.E. National Houseparty being held in Washington. In 1998 we made gathering favours for the Canadian N.A.M.E. Gathering held in Cornwall, Ontario.

We still have some of our Charter Members and they have been joined by beginners, collectors and artisans. Through Show & Tell and workshops our members enjoy sharing a wonderful hobby.