UNION, NJ — One of the largest model train displays in New Jersey has a permanent home in the Union County Parks system, and every year it pulls out all the stops for the Holiday Sound and Light Show featuring dozens of trains, thanks to an all-volunteer nonprofit organization, The Model Railroad Club, Inc. Opening Day is Friday Nov. 27, with extended hours from noon to 10 p.m. Shows continue every Friday, Saturday and Sunday until Dec. 13.
For 40 years The Model Railroad Club has constructed the enormous HO scale layout at its headquarters, the A. Paul Mallery Model Railroad Center, located in Lenape Park in Union Township.
“It is always wonderful to see guests of all ages at our show,” said Bob Nalbone, President of The Model RailRoad Club. “I can’t tell you how many people come up to me and tell me that they’ve been coming for, literally, decades. It spans generations.”
With The Mallery Center’s multilevel design, visitors can stroll above and within the layout while passenger and freight trains pass over canyons on bridges and through cities, disappear into dark tunnels, and reappear in meticulously crafted landscapes of a central New Jersey-Pennsylvania railway, bringing the region’s agricultural, commercial and industrial past to life.
Visitors can also explore the “bones” of an expansion under way, that will more than double the size of the layout when fully built out. After the show, visitors can explore N scale and G scale layouts at the Mallery Center, refresh themselves at the snack bar, and stock up on train-themed presents for the holidays at the gift shop.
All proceeds from the Holiday Sound and Light Show go to help fund the
Railroad Club’s activities, which include hosting public observation days throughout the year.
Order tickets in advance for discounts; tickets are $7 per adult ages 16 to 59, $4 per child age 3 to 15 and $5 for seniors age 60 and older.
For a complete schedule and advance ticket information, including convenient online ordering, visit tmrci.org or call 908-964-9724. To purchase tickets in advance in person, come to the ticket window at the Mallery Center is from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturdays.