Trains, Trains, Trains

Welcome to Colleen’s Corner. This is a column meant for fun and some information About myself: I am Colleen Fielding, a Freelance Photographer you often see me on the side of the road  or in various places taking photos of different things animals, birds, places, people etc.  l have lived in Lumby just over 8 years, you have seen my photos in the newspaper (Lumby Valley Times) and once in awhile in the Vernon Morning Star, and the Lumby Art Gallery. Photography is my passion. Disclaimer:  The information on some of my photos that I write about a lot of times come from the Internet or books I research them, hopefully the facts are as close to the truth as I can come.

Did you go to Lumby Days this year? What a very busy place indoors and outdoors. Cars were lined along the highway, up Miller Street, Catt, and just about anywhere they could find a parking spot. Someone told me that on Saturday there were over 40,000 people there, WOW! 

Outside there were food vendors, entertainment of all kinds including music, the car show, and the beer gardens.

Inside the buildings was the gun show, Monashee Arts Council, the silent auction, the vendors and the North Okanagan Model Railway Assoc.  

Every year that we have Lumby Days, the model railroaders are there. These guys were right across from me with their great display. There were a lot of people that would stop by and watch the trains go by. Some would ask questions, some would just watch the display. The men running the trains would gladly answer any questions the people asked. It was very interesting hearing what they had to say. 

In 1976 The North Okanagan Model Railway Association was established. In the beginning a group of local model railroaders would meet in a member’s garage, as the club grew they moved to what is now their permanent location on the second floor of the Greenhow building which is at the historic O’Keefe Ranch in Vernon BC a local tourist attraction which is owned and operated by the city of Vernon, and also funding from RDNO. The railroader club pays a nominal fee per year, which then allows them to provide a historical and well maintained piece of history in the operation of the railway display. This display at the O’Keefe ranch runs every season from May to October, with the push of a button there is full sound. Every year this display will be seen by about 30,000 people. In 1996 the layout  that measures 36 feet by 18 feet which not only has the model trains, but also very scenic local topography and industries had been in the  May issue of Rail Model Craftsman. When travelling to various events like Lumby Days the size is brought down to 34 feet by 16 feet, and has 3 show loops that are continuous. Each layout is Digital Command Control (DCC.) When going to events in Vancouver, Edmonton, and other places the display was transported by a dedicated trailer. The talk around the table is to look for a new portable layout that will have revised and improved technology to display the model railroading to the public.

Check the model railroaders out on their Facebook page, or their website: