Christmas, Trains and Legos

While Santa’s elves produce a lot of train sets each holiday season, they can’t hold a candle to the quality and scale of the ones on display each year at the Washington State History Museum’s Model Train Festival.

“Railroads have played an important role in our state’s history,” said Jennifer Kilmer, director of the Washington State Historical Society. “The model train festival provides a wonderful opportunity for us to share that history in a fun environment that involves Washington state residents and brings to life their passion for model trains.”

The event showcases model train displays designed and assembled by model train enthusiasts across the state including: Boeing Employees Model Railroad Club, Cannonball Express, Pierce County Lionel Club, Mount Rainier N-Scale, 4D NTRACK Group, 4D PNR HO Modular Group, Puget Sound Model Railroad Engineers and Washington State Operation Lifesaver. The displays occupy every floor of the museum and include the largest permanent model train layout in the state.

Extended to 11 days this year, the Model Train Festival runs from December 21 to January 1, and will feature the Polar Plaza Express, a ride-on train that will travel between the Washington State History Museum and the Tacoma Art Museum.

Santa Claus

And Santa shall not be forgotten, as we will offer pictures with Santa in front of a holiday train backdrop from 11am-3pm on December 21, 22, 23. Skip the mall and have photos taken by Lisa Hystak Photography while you’re enjoying the train displays.

If your child is a LEGO fan, he or she can design a train car and enter it into our LEGO Train Design Competition. The entry period is December 19-20 for kids ages 1-18. Entries must be delivered in-person to the museum on December 19 or 20 during open hours. Just one car, engine or station per entrant, and entries must be no larger than 14 inches long and 6 inches wide. All entries will be displayed in the History Lab for the run of the 2012 Model Train Festival, with 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place ribbons granted by an elite team of judges.

Adults: $9.50
Students: $7
5 and under: FREE

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