December is almost here and with it, comes a plethora of Christmas traditions.
For the past few years in Nacogdoches a little engine has been a holiday favorite the Loblolly model train is back for the sixth year!
The Loblolly Model Train display is unique in that it is the only traveling Three-rail, O-gauge railroad display in our area and they are also one of the only groups that chose to have their display at table top height with no ropes. This allows children to see the trains up close.
“It depicts somewhere in East Texas with brick streets and buildings,” said George Ellis, Loblolly Model Train Conductor.
Ellis has been building models for most of his life. He started in 1950 with his father and has continued the practice ever since and in recent years has enjoyed sharing his hobby with the public.
Four trains run through the model, one with a camera on it, to give visitors a closer view of the town.
Inside the model, you can see streets and buildings encompassing the sights of East Texas.
But for Ellis the model is much more than just a seasonal attraction it is a way for people to learn how their schoolwork can be applied in real life.
“In today’s age people are hooked up to cell phones and these types of apparatus and this gives you a hands on experience of something good in life,” said Ellis. “If you look here you’re going to see trackage and when you put things together there’s geometry involved with that and underneath there’s electricity…and I think it’s a great learning tool for the entire family.”
The train will be on display December 2nd – 4th and December 9th – 11th. The Depot will be open Fridays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. for all to enjoy.
In addition to seeing the model Ellis encourages people to come to the old depot in Nacogdoches for the history and with model trains to bring them down to put on the tracks.
“We had a gentlemen the other day, his name is Ben, he brought his Thomas the Tank Train and we put it on the layout and let him run it.” said Ellis. “Anybody is welcome to bring their train and we’ll put it on the layout and they can enjoy it for a period of time.”