The organizer of an upcoming model train show is hoping to give the hobby a much-needed boost in profile.
On Sept. 29 and 30, VecTor Garden Trains will host its first annual Manitoba Mega Train show and sale at the Canlan Sports Centre at 1871 Ellice Ave.
"I want to make a show where there’s a lot of diversity, different scales of train. I want something for everyone to enjoy," said VecTor founder Maurice Dorge.
"I wanted to put on a show so everyone can start getting in the hobby."
The show will include 17,000 square feet of model train layouts from hobbyists across the city, along with vendors and a train for kids to ride on.
Dorge has been collecting model trains for the past 20 years, and last year joined the hobby circuit, taking his models to Calgary, Saskatoon and across rural Manitoba. He runs a hobby shop out of his Ferry Road home.
Building scale models is a hands-on hobby, he said, noting it challenges one’s creativity to build trains, map out terrain and colour in the scenery.
"It’s your world, do what you want," said Dorge, who is also a member of the Assiniboine Valley Railway Club.
Collecting model trains isn’t always a cheap hobby, especially when you deal with high-end replicas, Dorge admits, noting he has a model Union Pacific Big Boy steam locomotive worth $5,300.
"In real life, they weigh a million pounds to haul ore," Dorge said.
Still, the hobby doesn’t have to be pricey, and Dorge is hoping to inspire more people to set up scale models in their gardens and backyards.
Dorge has set up a small G-scale train track around some trees in his small backyard near the airport.
"I just want to show people you don’t need a huge yard," he said.
General admission to the show is $5 while seniors and children will be admitted for $3. Children under six will get in for free.
For more, call Dorge at 204-837-4776 or visit http://www.vectorgardentrains.ca.