Model railroaders open their homes

Every November in Northern Nevada, 25 model railroaders open their homes to allow the public to view their model railroad layouts for free.

The layouts are located in Reno, Sparks, Carson City, Gardnerville, Stagecoach and Fernley. A few of the layouts are open on Friday night. Mostly Reno and Sparks are open on Saturday and Carson City and beyond are open on Sunday.

All of the model railroads will have trains running. Many of the layouts have very realistic scenery with buildings, streets, mountains, water features, trestles and everything you would see on the real railroads. Many are evolving and are at different stages of completion.

An example of one of the Reno layouts is Jim Petro’s model railroad layout. Petro is recreating the Denver and Rio Grande in Denver and surrounding area. It features a huge model of the Union Station in Denver, nine rows of track in the 7th Street freight yard and many many more areas of interest. All of his layout fills a 50-foot by 20-foot totally finished room. He has operating sessions that mimic the real railroads. Six two-man crews run trains in a prototypical way with a dispatcher who controls the activity on the railroad just like the real railroads do.

Tour information for this weekend can be accessed in several ways.

Online access is thru this website:

In addition Hobbytown USA at 2303 N. Carson St., Carson City and Times Square Trains at 970 7th St., in Reno will both have free tour guides available.

Also visitors can contact Petro at or his phone, 775-544-5636, or John Currie at or phone at 775-224-9725.


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