Monday, June 27, 2011

Railroad models a hit Railroad models a hit
The Crow family from Santa Maria has a long history of train enthusiasts.

Becky Crow’s grandfather worked on the railroad in Idaho, her father built a ridable steamer in the yard, and her 11-year-old son, Taylor, collects and sets up model trains.

Members of the Crow family eagerly took part Saturday in Model Railroad Day at Shepard Hall in the Santa Maria Public Library.

The free event put on by the San Luis Obispo Model Railroad Association featured three model railroads in various scales and train memorabilia to browse through.

Model Railroad Day marked the group’s first event in Santa Maria.

Becky Crow hopes there are many more such train displays in town.

“I think they need it more often,” Crow added.

Taylor Crow said he collects Lionel brand train models.

“They’re bigger and they’re cool,” he said.

Taylor also has models of houses to place next to his trains.

“I’ve just got to set them up like that,” he added, motioning to an elaborate, running model-train set that included miniature scenery surrounding the track.

Mike Mickens, secretary of the San Luis Obispo Model Railroad Association, answered questions posed by those who turned out for the occasion while dressed in a conductor’s cap and vest.

People were enjoying Model Railroad Day, he said. The group plans to continue to hold the event in Santa Maria in the future and expand it to two days. They also hope to find a larger venue that can hold more trains.

“People are already asking us to come back next year,” Mickens said.

“We weren’t even open yet and they were trying to come in,” he added.

Setting up the trains, which ran on top of tables, took about three and a half hours, according to Mickens.

Los Olivos resident Sean O’Neill, 9, loves trains so much he did a school project on the Pacific Coast Railway that used to run through the area.

He was especially interested in a train set at Model Railroad Day running past a model of the Los Olivos depot.

“Because I know where it is, and some part of it is still there,” Sean explained.

His mother, Kelly O’Neill, said the display of trains was a smaller version of what the O’Neills recently saw at the California State Railroad Museum in Sacramento.

“But it’s very well done,” she added.

No comments:

Post a Comment