Commercial layouts we've seen

A reply in another thread set me to thinkin':


>

What other commercial layouts have we seen in our travels? By which I mean model railroads (or dioramas or such) at commercial establishments that aren't model RR clubs. Not necessarily good or realistic ones; anything with tracks and trains. Preferably running.
I can think of only two: one is a cafe or restaurant in Tehachapi, near the famous Loop, that has a rather large and, as I remember, well-done model of trackage in the area. The other is a layout in the window of the Berkeley Ace hardware store downtown (which also has a hobby shop in the basement, so it might not count).
So what others are there?
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On Sat, 02 Feb 2008 18:06:10 -0800, David Nebenzahl wrote:

There's a cafe up in McMinville - or maybe Rickreall - up in that part of the Willamette valley, anyway - that has some G "scale" trackage around the ceiling, with a 4-4-0 and a few cars running around it. No protective plexi, but aside from the dusting problems, at least it encourages them to tun it at a sane speed!
--
Steve

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Long, long time ago (1050s - 1960s) there was a place in the Parkchester area of the Bronx, (NYC) just acoss from the 177th Street station on the IRT Pelham Bay Line called "Hamburger Express", had a ounter o level of Lionel O gauge that was used to deliver meals to patrons both at the centersit at stools counter and at booths around the walls of the restaurant.
As somebody else answered in this thread, there are a bunch of restaurants like that in Oregon.
One small downtown Portland law firm has a bucnh of stuff on static display as artwork. Mostly Lionel 1950s O and some Lionel standard gauge stuff.
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David Nebenzahl wrote:

Japanese or other Asian restaurants here in Sydney, Australia, who use G-"scale" trains to carry items around for the diners to make a selection.
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On Feb 2, 9:59 pm, Eddie Oliver

There's a Japanese restaurant in Portland, OR - Sushi Takahashi - that uses a G scale diesel and a bunch of flat cars to deliver small plates of sushi around a rectangular counter.
And here in Ohio, there are a couple of supermarkets that have G scale trains running around tracks suspended from the ceilings.
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On 2/2/2008 7:34 PM Andy spake thus:

>

>>

That must be a variation on the popular theme of sushi restaurants with little "boats" in a "canal" going around with unagi and maguro rolls.
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There used to be a restaurant called "The Golden Spike" near Stanford University that featured a complete, sceniced shelf layout running through two rooms. It depicted the Central Pacific from Sacramento to Summit. At one point, to gain elevation and cross an aisleway, it used helixes, one on each side.
I only ate there once, as the food was terrible, but the railroad was terrific!
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One of the Vegas casinos has -or had- one running through a couple of rooms, up above door level.
I don't remember which casino it was, but the layout was designed and built by Jack Sessums; a neighbor of mine who created special effects miniatures for TV and the movies right up until his death a few years ago. (He did the train scenes in "The Fugitive", "Ice Storm", and "Broken Arrow", among others.)
Google his name and look around if you'd like to be impressed by a fellow modeler. His live-steam Shay was impressive enough by itself, but he did *lots* of neat stuff over his lifetime.
Pete
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David Nebenzahl wrote:

There was an all you can eat resturant Whistle Junction in Spring Hill Florida that had an elongated LGB dogbone layout suspended from the ceiling (above the area where the food aisles were). They closed last year. They also had railroads as their theme (dessert area was the caboose, etc).
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There a restaurant in the Hallmark Crown Center in Kansas City that had an HO train running round the dining area behind the wall, with window cutouts to view the train. Fritz's Railroad Restaurant (http://www.crowncenter.com/Dining/Index.asp?Reference=DiningFlashMap )
What's more, they had an overhead train that delivered meals. Train would stop above your table, with the car holding your food on an elevator of sorts. It came down to table level, you took your food, car went back up and on its way.
Val
A reply in another thread set me to thinkin':

>

What other commercial layouts have we seen in our travels? By which I mean model railroads (or dioramas or such) at commercial establishments that aren't model RR clubs. Not necessarily good or realistic ones; anything with tracks and trains. Preferably running.
I can think of only two: one is a cafe or restaurant in Tehachapi, near the famous Loop, that has a rather large and, as I remember, well-done model of trackage in the area. The other is a layout in the window of the Berkeley Ace hardware store downtown (which also has a hobby shop in the basement, so it might not count).
So what others are there?
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There's a Roadside Cafe in Drumheller Alta. has a G scale layout running around the circumference suspended from the ceiling (great buckwheat pancakes also)
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David Nebenzahl wrote:

There is (or was when I last lived in the area) a McDonald's just a bit north of Knott's Berry Farm on Beach Blvd. in Buena Park, CA with both an overhead train and a small layout between rows of seating. They also have a water tank outside in place of the normal golden arches sign.
--

Rick Jones
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David Nebenzahl wrote:

-- A G gauge train in a restaurant on Padre Island, s. Texas. Runs on a shelf about 1ft below the ceiling. Can't recall the name of the restaurant, though.
-- An HO layout in the Pinewood Hotel in North Bay, Ontario. It's maintained by the local model rr, club, so maybe it doesn't count. There's a button to push, which starts a 15 minute cycle of operation.
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There's a reasonably nice one (G scale and running) at the Sumpter Junction restaurant in Baker City, Oregon. I can't speak with certainty, but, it probably gets some impetus from the nearby Sumpter Valley RR Association. HTH
Jerry
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A friend, whom I've known since we were high school-aged, owns Doc Burnstein's Ice Cream Lab in Arroyo Grande, California. He's got a G-guage train running around the ceiling in his parlor. That's quite a surprise because in the 30 years I've known the guy he never showed any interest in trains until he put that one in his store..
I haven't built up the nerve to tell him that the steam loco animation on his web site sounds like it's got a Nathan P-5 horn... awwww, he wouldn't know what I was talking about anyway... http://www.docburnsteins.com /
____ Mark Mathu Whitefish Bay, Wis.
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The Family Buggy in Farmington, MI, has a G scale train running around near the ceiling.
--
Frank Rosenbaum
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Back in the 50s I visited "Railroads in Miniature" in Creston, IL. It was a huge O scale layout built by a guy in his barn. It was open to the public on weekends. According to a booklet that I got, it was sort of automated, using lots of relays. A button push started a cycle where trains would start, run a while, and stop. I think the cycle lasted an hour or more. When it was finished he'd close up for the day.
There was a big pond in the layout, with a mosquito control fish living in it. There was something like a rotary car dumper for unloading hoppers into a boat. The boat, remote controlled via underwater cable, would then take the coal to the other side of the pond and unload. Somehow that coal would get loaded into empty hoppers which were routed to the rotary dumper.
The guy died and the layout was dismantled to be moved and reassembled. I don't think it was ever put back together.
Yankee Candle in Deerfield, MA has a large overhead loop of track with LGB trains running around a couple of their rooms. One of the rooms has a Christmas theme with fake snow falling around the walls. I don't know if it's the air conditioning or attitude, but that room feels very cool on a summer day.
--
Bill Kaiser
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1). McDonalds - Canton, MA - Boston Sports theme - LGB running around the ceiling of dining room, suspended on diamond plate sheet metal roadbed with lexan sides. Locos are F-units with sport teams on them, freight cars are sports and/or McDonalds decorated.
2). Governor's Restaurant - Maine (multiple locales incl. Lewiston) - LGB running around circumfrance of one or two dining room ceilings on wooden shelving with no lexan. Loco is steam, cars are random freight cars with a flat or a gon carrying a sign promoting the restaurant.
3). Winslow's Auto Clinic - Foxboro, MA - American Flyer S-gauge running around circumfrance of waiting room's ceiling on decorative shelf brackets with a decorative but functional wooden railing. Some areas have scenery, including a large wooden trestle 2' high. There are also working light poles around most of the layout, as well as some storage/display shelves for equipment not on the "mainline". Locos are steam, freight cars are random, but include a derrick, a caboose, etc.
4). Filene's Dept. Store - Boston, MA - HO Scale - Christmas display layout built in the mid-1980's by the South Shore Model Railway Club. Only at Filene's for the one season, the SSMRC then used it for years as a traveling layout. The layout has since been sold to interested parties.
5). South Station - Boston, MA - LGB layout set up in main waiting room under MBTA Solari Board during holiday season for several years running in the 1990's. Multiple levels and able to run without supervision for hours, it was fenced off from onlookers by security barriers. Locos and cars were of all kinds (diesel, steam, standard, narrow gauge, passenger, freight, etc.).
6). Annie's Book Stop, Sharon, MA - Lionel O-gauge 3-rail layout running in a loop on top of bookcases during the early 1990's. Equipment was diesel and steam, passenger and freight.
7). Trackside Hobbies - Attleboro, MA - HO layout, Conrail-based dogbone layout. Runs along one wall, used mostly to demonstrate DCC products. Some scenery, multiple levels, buildings, etc.
8). Platinum Spike - Cohasset, MA - G, O, HO, N in concentric rings in store front window 5 years ago.
9). Clark's Trading Post - No. Woodstock, NH - Live steam train rides.
Paul A. Cutler III ************* Weather Or No Go New Haven *************
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Theres a resturant in Scranton Pa that has a G railroad that runs all over the bar and resturant.
Dentist off in New Orleans ( for children ) has a G railroad that runs through the whole building.
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There's a restaraunt here in Huntsville, AL, ROLO's, that's railroad-themed with train pictures on the walls. They have an O-gauge loop suspended over the dining area, and they'll turn it on and run the train around for a couple of minutes if asked. Doesn't run all the time.
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