Toy train show returns to Socorro

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“All aboard!” for the world’s greatest hobby.

Courtesy photo: Saturday’s show at the Best Western Hotel Convention Center will feature toy and model trains of all sizes and gauges.

The 11th annual Toy Train Show and Swap Meet will be held in Socorro at the Best Western Hotel Convention Center on Saturday, Aug. 23. There will be operating layouts, raffle prizes and vendors selling toy and model railroad equipment and railroad memorabilia.

According to Socorro Train Gang member Jon Spargo, model railroading has been called “the world’s greatest hobby.”

“Whether you just like to run toy trains or build elaborate layouts, this hobby has something for everyone,” Spargo said in an e-mail. “If you have an old toy or model train set in the closet or attic and want to know if it still runs or how much it is worth, dust it off and bring it to the show. Some old toy train sets have become quite valuable and most can be brought back to life for the enjoyment of both big and little kids.”

This year the show will feature several operating layouts including the return of the “Summerville & Northlands Lines” portable model railroad.

Kids will be able try their hand at doing some operating. There is also a short quiz to take that, if completed, will earn you a 3×4-inch “Summerville & Northlands” sticker.

There will also be tracks available to test run any model train equipment that you may be considering for purchase.

Many of the vendors are experts in all aspects of toy train operation and model railroading and can answer your questions.

The New Mexico Division of the Toy Train Operating Society will have its modular “O” scale layout set up and running.

The Socorro Train Gang model railroad club will also be operating its Christmas Raffle layout.

In conjunction with the show, Socorro Train Gang members will be available to take interested folks on a tour to the Hammel Museum to see the club’s layouts.

If you are interested in the tour you can sign up at the show’s registration desk.

Sponsored by the New Mexico Division of the Toy Train Operating Society, the Socorro Train Gang Railroad Club and the City of Socorro, the show will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will feature toy and model trains of all sizes and gauges.

Raffle prizes will be drawn at 3 p.m. Admission is $1 per person and $2 per family.

For more information, call 575-418-7534.