A model citizen: Tour guide helps maintain Antelope Valley rendering

Leave it to a former camera repairman to fix a power plant model.

That’s exactly what Daryl Hill was up to Aug. 26, when he visited Antelope Valley Station near Beulah, ND. Those who walked into the building’s main lobby that day could see the Basin Electric summer tour guide’s heavy concentration as he re-glued broken-off pieces of the 4,000-pound Antelope Valley model.

Daryl Hill

Daryl Hill, Basin Electric summer tour guide, applies adhesive to broken-off parts of the Antelope Valley Station model near Beulah, ND.

Antelope Valley is very near and dear to Hill, who worked full-time at Basin Electric for 35 years. He was manager of communications relations at the time of his 2013 retirement, and has given more than 1,500 tours at Antelope Valley.

Each tour started with the model. “The model of Antelope Valley Station is such a great educational tool, especially for tours,” Hill says. “It gives you a three-dimensional, comprehensive look at the plant.”

Paper Clip

Daryl Hill uses a paper clip to temporarily hold together part of the Antelope Valley Station model.

Hill recalls the days before he joined Basin Electric, when he worked as a part-time camera repairman in the back of Bob’s Photo in Bismarck, ND. His experience with hot glue, contact cement and solvent adhesives made him the ideal person to touch up the Antelope Valley model.

The structure has been around since the 80s, and Hill says damage to smaller pieces emerged from the occasional swinging elbow or weakened glue bond.

“Our little model just needed some tender loving care,” he says.

A re-attached baghouse door indicator here, a re-enforced glue bond there. Hill used simple tools, like paper clips and rubber bands, to hold pieces together while making improvements.

He even dusted the model’s turbine deck.

These are small adjustments that make a big difference when educating people about Antelope Valley. Hill has loved giving tours at the plant, which will always hold a special place in his heart.

“Giving tours at Antelope Valley was just a fun journey,” he says.

Get another look at the Antelope Valley model during a recent tour with West River Electric employees.

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