Model trains have fascinated people of all ages for a very long time. Christmas memories have been made and will continue to be made, especially with the help of the Railroad Club of Carolina Lakes, a group of 60 residents from the Sun City Community in Indian Land who share a love of trains, both model and full-size.
I was invited to the Lake House to see the train display, and I was absolutely mesmerized by the details, billboards, street lights and so many other details. The train display features a number of activities that allow children of any age to operate various features.
Coal can be unloaded and loaded up again. A gate-man will rush out of his shack to protect the crossing while the gate comes down, and baggage men can be persuaded to operate carts in and out of the freight station.
New this year is that children actually can operate a Thomas the Tank Engine and his friends Annie and Clarabelle around the layout using remote controls. This display represents hundreds of hours of volunteer work by the club members. Come join the fun.
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The hours of operation for the train display at the Lake House at Sun City are as follows:
• Noon-1:30 p.m. Dec. 6.
• 11 a.m.-3:00 p.m. Dec. 7.
• Noon-1:30 p.m. Dec. 13.
• 10 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Dec. 20.
Joe Silien is president of the club; Wally Drexler, vice president; Mike Joyce, secretary; Russ Whitman, treasurer; and Don Frost is monitor. In addition to operating the trains, club members Andi Silien and Anneliese Krauss oversee a contest to win one of three Lionel train sets or a handsome framed railroad-themed photograph. A portion of the donations will be given this year to the Indian Land EMS.
In past years, the club has donated to the Del Webb Library and also donated a train layout to the Lancaster Children’s Home.
This is a magical time of year, and this is well worth the visit.