Model train enthusiasts gather for Amherst Railway Society Show

Hampden County

WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Big E is the weekend destination for model railroad hobbyists from all over New England and even the world.

Enthusiasts came from as far away as Australia for the annual Amherst Railway Society Show at the Better Living Center as well as several other Big E buildings.

The most familiar sight, a dad sharing his love for model trains with his son, but 22News found plenty of moms on a similar mission.

“I grew up with a train that was right across the street from my house,” said Southwick resident, Dia Paradis.

So many of Saturday’s thousands of visitors can recall the first model railroad trains they received as children.

“I had a first train set from my dad when I was less than 10-years-old and that sort of planted a seed and it kept going,” said Mike Heines of Rome, New York.

John Sacerdote heads up the Amherst Railway Society, he told 22News, “I think a sense of accomplishment as well as a different path to get there. One day you can be an electrician, the next day an artist, then a designer, a builder.”

An estimated 12,000 model railroad enthusiasts attended the first day of this eagerly awaited event at the Big E Saturday.

Sacerdote said he expects at least that number of visitors on Sunday the second and final day of this year’s show.

Doors open and the model trains get going Sunday at 9 a.m.

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