Railroad Days attracts large crowd in Winslow

WINSLOW, Ariz. - The eighth annual Railroad Days took place April 20-21 in Winslow Ariz. About 500 people attended the Saturday show, some coming from neighboring states.

Model train afficionados set up in the Snowdrift Art Space on Third Street. This year's event featured mostly N Scale Trains, very small model trains with cars about four inches long. The railroad cars and track are 1/160th of the real thing.

The next size up in model railroads is "HO" which is about twice the size of N Gage. Hobbyists set up the trains in a configuration called N-TRAK, which is a standardized and modular system where all modules are interchangeable and can be added together to make a larger lay-out. At the Winslow event, a number of model railroaders combine each of their individual train track systems.

The Arnold Company in Nuremberg, Germany introduced N Gage commercially in 1962 because model railroaders in Europe and England usually had less space available to dedicate to their hobby as opposed to railroaders in the U.S.

N-Scale and N-TRAK is gaining popularity and is almost as popular as the older sizes.

In the Snowdrift Art Space a number of model railroads were on display, all with complete towns, scenery, track systems and rail cars and engines. Model railroaders set up the N sized railroads at about waist height, which gives onlookers a view as if looking down from an airplane.

Model rail cars were for sale - both used rail cars as well as new. The Chamber of Commerce put on a dinner Saturday night at the Skylark Patio, compliments of Tess and Lawrence Kenna. In addition to the food, Fred Obermeyer's group provided music.

Winslow Railroad Days first came to Winslow at the La Posada hotel eight years ago. The hotel is a particularly great location for rail buffs, who sit near the rail line to observe and document trains. The old rail station is a magnet for people interested in trains, one reason for the Railroad Days event at the La Posada in Winslow. Dan Lutzik, owner of Snowdrift and general manager at La Posada has been the catalyst for these rail themed events, partially because of his interest in model railroading.

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