Train Show Survival Guide

The annual Lincoln Square Train Show is looming in our windshield. Welcome aboard if you’re just catching up with us. Here’s a few tips on how to get the most out of helping and attending.

#1 Bring your gloves. Hey, it’s got to do with railroads, so always good to have them along. Be sure to bring yours if you’ll be setting up tables starting at noon on Friday. There are about 150 tables to be unloaded, moved into position and set-up. I’ll have a few spare pairs if you forget.

#2 Bring a model. Something you built, even if it’s simple, tells a story and that’s what the public loves to see. We’ll have table and an HO 4×8 layout to display them on. If you run DCC, then you can run anything that will take 22″ R curves.

#3 Eat! You mom would want that. Lincoln Square Village has a great restaurant, Stango Cuisine, that serves delicious Zambian food. Bet many have never tried it, but you won’t be disappointed and they offer vegetarian dishes along with great stews and other meaty delights. It’s right there in the food court, along with cold drinks and snacks.

#4 Get a charge! If that phone or camera starts lagging because you’re taking too many pics, if you have your USB charge cable stop by the ITD exhibit and plug into one of our batteries for a few minutes. We’ll have you going in no time while enjoying good company and a restful seat – first come, first served. Sorry, we do not service Priuses.

#5 Get up early! Your dad always said it was good for you, even if he didn’t always do so himself. And you’ll enjoy learning about how a train show comes together. Join us at 8am on Saturday morning to help check vendors in. Otherwise, snooze in a little and come over when the doors open to the public at 10am Sat. We open at 11am on Sunday.

#6 Not get enough trains yet? Check in with me and I’ll arrange a visit after the show closes on Saturday evening to my extensive HO/HOn3 D&RGW Four Corners Division. It’s just 4 blocks from Lincoln Square.

#7 Lost? Then get a map of the show exhibits here. It will be posted here on Saturday morning.

Amazing Supplies at Art Coop

When you’re at the mall for the train show at the end of March, you may find a shop that can help your modeling efforts year around. Right at it’s center, Lincoln Square offers a great art supply store, the Art Coop, with plenty to appeal to model railroaders. You’ll find all sorts of paint, stripwood, knives, brushes, Sculptamold, plaster, and other such items in multiple formats at reasonable prices. It’s pretty cool that I am within walking distance of a store that carries Sculptamold.

While not a hobby shop, they carry a selection of scenery materials, figures, and tools that offer a wider selection than many model shops offer. In part, that’s due to their supplying the needs of local architects and students, who often need diorama materials.

There’s a wide selection of papers and quality cardboards, along with markers and pens, that come in handy when scratchbuilding. They have a selection of textures and roofing materials, although it is more oriented towards O scale than HO. However, if there;’s something you don’t see, just ask and they can usually get it for you. They always look forward to making new friends among those who come for the trains but notice that the Art Coop has much to offer, too.