Holiday toy-train photos

Posted by Rene Schweitzer
on Tuesday, December 13, 2016

'Tis the season to enjoy some holiday photos! Click on any photo to enlarge!

Dave Sanders’ O gauge layout: There is a surreal quality to the scene Dave Sanders photographed on his layout in San Diego, Calif. Amid the backdrop blending with the snow-covered mountains and fir trees, Dave has inserted an exceedingly diverse group of figures associated with Christmas, including Santa Claus, the Magi from the New Testament, and Frosty the Snowman. Interrupting their reverie is the MTH Chicago & North Western 4-6-4 Hudson steamer and tender.

Wayne Staley’s O gauge layout: You can take the kid out of Philadelphia, Wayne Staley might tell his friends in the toy train hobby, but you can’t take the Philly out of him. What would he mean? Even though this native of the City of Brotherly Love resides in the desert community of Lancaster, Calif., he exhibits loyalty to the Pennsylvania RR on the temporary layout he sets up every year during the holiday season. Wayne runs a Philadelphia & Reading RR 4-6-0 and passenger cars from MTH on the main level. A Pennsylvania RR K4 Pacific 4-6-2 (also from MTH) rules the elevated roost. The steamer and its passenger train have just arrived at Victoria Station.

Claude Cuendet’s O gauge diorama: Photographs showing miniature trains operating outdoors typically end up in the mailbox of Garden Railways magazines, one of our sister publications at Kalmbach. But perhaps because the models Claude Cuendet runs on his O gauge dioramas are so obviously toys – or possibly because he shoots them in wintry scenes – Classic Toy Trains is delighted to share one more of his marvelous images. We’re thrilled to introduce you to Buco trains, made in the 1950s in Switzerland, which is the country Claude and his family call home. They reside in the picturesque town of Epalinges, not far from Lausanne.

Chris Lonero’s Wide and O gauge layout: When Chris Lonero realized the amount of real estate available at his home in Wilmington, Mass., wouldn’t come close to being as grand as he had hoped, he wisely adjusted his dream. Better yet, he decided to make every square inch count by developing ingenious and charming scenes certain to entrance viewers. Here is a perfect example of Chris’ wonderful handiwork. He neatly decorated a reissued Hell Gate Bridge with a big wreath and placed elves on the rear platform of the American Flyer Wide gauge no. 4021 caboose rolling through – resplendent in red and green.

Macy’s Department Store’s S gauge exhibit: People living in or visiting St. Louis between Thanksgiving and New Year’s have benefited from a wonderful combination of traditions highlighting toy trains. Famous-Barr, formerly the principal department store in that city, thrilled shoppers with incredible displays of miniature trains and accessories. Macy’s, which acquired the assets and properties of Famous-Barr, also attracted onlookers with magnificent displays in the windows of its stores in New York City during the holiday season. Fortunately, executives wanted to keep the past alive, insisting on the construction of a large S gauge exhibit in St. Louis that they eventually donated to the Museum of Transportation. John Brophy, who serves on the board of the museum, sent this picture of the snow-covered landscape amid which you can see many American Flyer beauties.

Eugene Thompson’s O gauge layout: When Eugene Thompson envisioned the 10 x 20-foot O gauge extravaganza he hoped to build, he wanted to revive memories of growing up in Pittsburgh, where he received his first Lionel trains from father. He dedicated the layout, not far from Seattle in Federal Way, Wash., to his dad and made sure a portion captured his father’s love of Christmas. New and vintage trains parade through the wintry scenery Gene created with guidance from Dave Hikel. Department 56 porcelain buildings and figures highlight the steam and electric locomotives dashing by in this busy scene, which Dave photographed on a visit to Gene’s home.

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