It’s all aboard the train this weekend…well, the model trains that is.
The Eastern Cascades Model Railroad Club held the first day of their 25th annual open house on Saturday.
Kids and adults alike gathered to ride the model trains along roughly two miles of track on the club’s property on Modoc Ln. in east Bend.
Club members have been building on the track since 1995. This is their first year holding the open house since 2019 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ray Taylor, the club’s treasurer, said they were worried they would lose some of the crowd this year.
“Because of COVID we haven’t done this for two years, and we have kind of a clientele of young families, and you see the kids grow up over time,” he said. “But the response has been great. We appreciate everybody being a part of it.”
10 trains ran throughout each day, run by diesel, gas, and steam engines. Members from a couple of other clubs around the state came to contribute their own engines as well.
Folks were also welcome to come inside to observe more than a mile of a mini model train set, which members have worked hard to expand and improve this year with new scenery of upstate New York.
“Everybody loves trains anyway,” Taylor said. “We’re not all kids here, obviously there’s some of us old men that are doing this also, but the draw is just the excitement of trains. For the little kids the trains are just wonderful, and for the families, so it’s something we enjoy doing.”
He said nearly 1,000 people had already attended by Saturday afternoon.
They will also be running the event from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday.