About Us

Club founder and President Byron Black, (right) with club member Bill Pettyjohn, (left).

Our History

Many children have put together a model train, model car, or built a dioramas. Some people enjoy that hobby as adults – and for some, it’s a passion. The Ad Astra Modeling Club was created with the goal of bringing people together who enjoy building models, whether of ships, cars, trains, tanks, planes, dioramas, fantasy, or sci-fi figures. Byron Black, club president, describes how it came to be. “Building models has been a part of my life for over 50 years. My mother introduced me to the hobby when I was a child as a way to address my ADHD symptoms and help me learn how to focus better. My enjoyment of the hobby grew, as well as my attention span. I’ve been building models ever since, and have completed a couple hundred, many before graduating high school. As a hobby, building models has been a great stress reliever as well as an opportunity to meet and connect with others. Unable to do much building through the ‘family raising’ years, I continued to grow my ‘stash’ (unbuilt kits) and looked for opportunities to connect with other like minded hobbyists. I learned of the International Plastic Modelers Society (IPMS) and later the Armor Modelers Preservation Society (AMPS). The nearest clubs were Prison City Modelers (IPMS) in Leavenworth and Kansas City AMPS in Overland Park. After traveling to these clubs and shows, an AMPS regional Vice President suggested starting a chapter in Topeka. I spoke with some friends who agreed that Topeka and surrounding area needed a club, and Ad Astra Modeling Club was born. We welcome a wide range of modeling genre and hobbyists to our club. We enjoy learning from each other and seeing the various levels of creativity. Our first show was in November 2021 and was very successful. The club became an official IPMS (International Plastic Modelers’ Society) club in 2023.

Dedicated to the art of scale models