Model trains everywhere! My husband is an model train enthusiast and works with HO scale trains. He belongs to the DelMarVa Model Railroad Club located on the “state line” in Delmar Delaware. Every year, the club opens its doors to the public on 4 weekends for their annual Open House. Visitors come to view the train displays, and see the various scales of trains running. The club has 8000 square feet of train displays, so much more than the home hobbyist can manage. All scales are represented, and there seems to be “something for everyone”.
I typically spend those four weekends at the front door, greeting visitors and handling the sales of raffle tickets for those inclined to purchase them. Each year there are 3 terrific train sets and 3 winners. This year they have added 3 additional prizes, with tickets for 4 to the Strasburg Railroad.
Yesterday was the first day for the 33rd season. There were 496 visitors. While not a “record setting number”, it was a significant amount, considering it was pouring rain all afternoon. The club will be open to visitors on Sunday, Nov 25, 2018 from 12 noon until 4 pm, and again on Saturday, Dec 1st (11 am – 4 pm) and Sunday Dec 2nd (12 noon to 4pm). After New Years there are 2 more weekends, Jan 5 & 6, and Jan 12 & 13 2019.
The club is located at 103 E. State Street in Delmar DE 19940, on the second floor of Camelot Hall. There is plenty of free parking behind St Stephens UM Church.
I am always interested in how people hear about the Open House, as we have many 1st time visitors every year. Social media is one way, and word of mouth is another way. With a very small advertising budget, the word seems to spread. Yesterday there were visitors from all over the mid-Atlantic. We have a lot of “repeat” visitors, some who attend EACH weekend. Because there is so much to see, it is hard to take it all in at once. They often say they see something new with each visit. Since the admission is free, why not?
I thought I would share a few photo’s with you in the event you are unable to visit!
This is a picture of some “new this year” buildings on the O Scale layout –
On the HO layout one of our new members has built a train of double stack cars. He had to make improvements to the many tunnel portals on the layout in order for his “high loads” to traverse the many “rail miles” and not hit a tunnel roof !
The HO layout is the most extensive layout at the club. It is an “OPERATIONS” layout with many industries. Every car on the layout has a purpose and that is identified by the “car card” and “weigh bill systems” in place. The HO layout members have an Operating Session once a month, and folks come from Baltimore Maryland and Philadelphia PA to participate. It takes a minimum of 15 operators to have a “good session”. They operate a “fast clock”, and the dispatcher issues train orders, etc. The HO layout is signalled and has track detection and operates with DCC (Digital Command and Control) .
There is something for “everyone” at the DelMarVa Model Railroad Club and whether you are a “serious model railroader” or a person who just likes to see the trains going “round & round”, it is a delight to see.
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More information about the club, including membership information, can be found on the DelMarVa Model Railroad Club website .