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'Stories being told all over': Model train show shares unique layouts and care for details

A display of model trains is showcased at the Greater Edmonton Model Train Show on Sunday, Sept. 11, 2022 (CTV News Edmonton/Brandon Lynch). A display of model trains is showcased at the Greater Edmonton Model Train Show on Sunday, Sept. 11, 2022 (CTV News Edmonton/Brandon Lynch).
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Model train enthusiasts gathered at Millennium Place Sunday for the return of the Greater Edmonton Model Train Show.

More than 2,000 people were expected to attend the annual two-day gathering of model railway enthusiasts that featured layouts created by local and travelling hobbyists, including some from B.C. and Saskatchewan.

"We are enthusiastically happy to be back," said John Patrie, a volunteer with organizer Mainline Model Railroad Fellowship.

"So happy to be able to celebrate trains again," Patrie added. "We are just trying to move forward (after the pandemic) and keep the hobby going with young people, keep them interested and exhibit what people can do."

A display of model trains is showcased at the Greater Edmonton Model Train Show on Sunday, Sept. 11, 2022 (CTV News Edmonton/Brandon Lynch).

John Ruder was one of the travelling exhibitors proudly showing off his scale and historically accurate model train layout that took four years to design and build.

"This was designed to travel," he explained to CTV News Edmonton. "So it all comes in two-foot by four-foot sections. Those sections are steel with plywood tops with pins that interlock and legs that come up so, it all can be moved quickly and safely."

Ruder said his favourite part about creating model train layouts was designing compelling scenes so viewers could get lost in them.

"If you look around, there are little vignettes or stories being told all over," he added. "One of our favourites is the outhouse down among the homes which the boys are pushing over. I always say, that they don't know that grandma's in the outhouse."

"Every scene has those kinds of stories and figures doing and living, sometimes funny, sometimes poignant," he said.

"They are all there for you to make stories and engage in… So you are really part of it."