Contacts: Nancy Loliva, (559) 713-4535
Monty Cox, (559) 713-4591
Date: Friday, Nov. 2, 2012
MODEL TRAIN DISPLAY TAKES CENTER STAGE AT VISALIA TRANSIT
The Transit Center will be the new home of a model train display, beginning with an unveiling at 10:30 am Thursday, Nov. 15, at 425 E. Oak Ave.
Visalia Mayor Amy Shuklian will pay homage to the three individuals who spent countless hours putting the display together for no other reason than for Transit Center patrons, young and old, to enjoy. The three individuals – Ron Humason, Louis Whitendale and Ron Wyatt – spent 3,000 hours putting the N scale model train layout together. Their love of trains is already on display at the Imagine U Museum and the Tulare County Museum in Mooney Grove Park, an actual replica of the Visalia Electric Railroad that ran in the early 1900s.
The display defies description, but it does include 2,000 handmade trees with10 Redwood trees matching the ones in Sequoia National Park. It also features 3 circles of track to carry the San Joaquin Daylight, and long-haul and local freight lines that make a complete loop around the entire display that is roughly 4’ by 12’ in size.
The town, which features its own park, transit system, and Farmer’s Market, centers around the Palace Hotel, which was once a landmark in downtown Visalia. It also features a 500-count ‘em – 500 cow dairy and a lake for the fishing enthusiasts. The Sequoia National Park is also featured in the display, including a Sequoia Shuttle making its way to the Park.
One of the sets used in the Transit display was donated by Ron and Debbie Schuler.
“We built this to honor Ron and Debbie Schuler who donated the original layout and we agreed to rebuild it and find a good place to put it on display,” said Louis Whitendale. Businesses and individuals provided financial support, including Bill and Claudia Whitendale, Ron Humason, Ron Wyatt,Central Coast Trains, Alex’s Paint and Body Shop, St. George Spine and Paint Institute, Dr. Hany Nasr, Buckman-Mitchell Inc., Dr. Gerald M. Schneider, Mary’s Vineyard, Lone Oak Veterinary Clinic, and Expetec. The funds were used to purchase scenery, rolling stock, people, animals, buildings, etc.
The unveiling is open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, contact the Visalia Transit Center at 713-4100.