Train Days

By: Megan McClain

I’ve always loved the scene where Gomez Addams is maniacally playing with model trains in The Addams Family film.

This week you also can also imagine little lives traveling passed you as you check out model trains and miniature landscape.

A dozen train clubs from Southern California are displaying their models and train expertise for Train Days at both the San Bernardino County Museum and the branch in Apple Valley, the Victor Valley Museum. This year's Train Days event runs through April 10, 2016.



I recognize some of the displays from years passed, such as the amazing circus layout. My favorite this year was a model that had a lot of LED lights, a haunted house with a cornfield and an UFO laying a crop circle.



We went on Saturday and Sunday for Train Days, being members, and gave our best try at helping the museum go for a Guinness World Record for longest Soul Train-style dance. The crowd was just a little short, so 2017 will be the year!

Most of the kids lingered at a small table where they could push a button and operate one of two trains. I had brought backup, and it was easy for my mom to walk my older son around while I investigated the circus train, leaving my five-and-a-half-year-old driving a train and checking out a nearby video.



The museum had little craft projects outside including coloring train whistles and conductor hats, and a train ride for $2 my little guys went spinning on twice, cheering on the imagined downhill grade.

We also took a minute as we walked back in from the Learning Depot (follow the arrows to two more train clubs in there!) and outside activities to check out the new mining and camouflage exhibits that have appeared since we came. The museum has been making a lot of changes and it seems every time we go there is something fun to play with! (Click here for our recap from an earlier trip).

Before you go (or when you get there) go down the walkway toward the locomotive at the museum, and push the button to operate the signal. All aboard!


The San Bernardino County Museum at 2024 Orange Tree Lane, Redlands, CA.  It is open Tuesdays through Sundays from 9a.m.-5p.m. General admission is $10 adults, $8 for military or seniors, $7 for students, and kids aged 5-12 are $5. Parking is free.

The Victor Valley Museum is at The Victor Valley Museum is at 11873 Apple Valley Road in Apple Valley. It is open Wednesday through Sundays from 10a.m. to 4p.m. Admission is $5 adults, $4 seniors or military, and $2.50 for students and children.

For more information about Train Days or the museums in general, visit