Christmas wonder filled the air at the annual Train Show held at the Southern Ohio Medical Center (SOMC) Friends Center on Nov. 26-27.
Paper snowflakes were hanging from the ceiling and children gazed wide-eyed at the trains and models. The adults softened back into a child-like state themselves as they reminisced stories of childhood fun with their own children and grandchildren.
The train show has been ongoing for approximately 35 years and while the venues and displays have changed, one thing remains: the desire to share something that brings happiness to so many.
Each year, 13-15 participants bring their displays and set-up. This year, there was also a special replica of the Sciotoville Railroad Bridge, designed by Harold Woods.
For some, the trains reminded them of being a child on Christmas morning and unwrapping a new model. For the younger generations, images of the Polar Express movie come to mind. Either way, somehow the trains conjure images of Christmas for many.
“We don’t have a club or anything. We all just get together and bring everything to set up around this time of year,” said organizer Mark Harris. “I think trains and Christmas are just tied together. Trains have been a tradition for people for years and years. My grandfather had the entire city of New Boston scaled down back in 40’s and that’s what got me into it.”
Around 1,500-2,500 people cycle through the train show over the course of the weekend.
“When I was little I really liked trains, I dreamed of being an engineer, but as you know, the things that you want when you’re little don’t always work out when you’re an adult,” said Dave James. James has collected trains for around 20 years. “I don’t really have a place at home to keep a display, so the train show lets me bring everything out and share it. It’s always great to see the kids, big and little, enjoying them.”
As of 6 pm, Saturday (Nov. 26), the engines will have come to a halt, but they will be back next year. For more information about the Train Show, please call 740-356-6160.
Reach Ciara Conley at 740-981-6977, Facebook “Ciara Conley - Daily Times,” and Twitter @PDT_Ciara.