Fun Things Visits the Choo Choo Barn in Lancaster, PA

If your a kid at heart you need to check out the Choo Choo Barn –Traintown, U.S.A.® - located in Strasburg, PA. This is one of the largest,most engaging, custom model train displays in America.  Featuring more than 150 animations and 22 operating trains, this 1,700 square foot, handcrafted, work-of- art is packed with action as it details the many familiar landmarks and scenes Lancaster County.

My family and I could have spent hours finding new details as we walked through this amazing display.  We were so impressed about how no detail was forgotten. I really liked how they incorporated homes and attractions that you see in Lancaster.  You can see a moving Ferris wheel, with soldered seats and custom lights, tiny trees and stalks of corn and live fish swimming in a pond. The creativity and attention to detail is nothing short of amazing. They even had an animation of a fire rescue with firemen putting up ladders, going into a burning house, saving a person and squirting water on the home to put out the fire.

It feels like the whole world turns from daytime to night as the lights dim. The entire display turns into a brilliantly lit nighttime display as street lights and lights in homes, buildings and the trains begin to glow. My children really liked the night display and they found even more details.

The owner's wife gave us a tip which I will pass along to you. Go through the display slowly and at least twice. It's the only way to see all of the miniature details and appreciate the craftsmanship that went into this local wonder.  

It's easy to drive by and miss the Choo Choo Barn, but if you are in the area I recommend you stop in. For adults, you'll be brought back to your childhood when most families set up a train display for the holidays. For kids, they will be memorized by the scene and be introduced to the hobby of model trains.

Facts About Choo Choo Barn

Created by the Groff family in 1961, the Choo Choo Barn is under the creative direction of Tom Groff, an expert in the artistry of model railroading. Traintown U.S.A.® is also home to the Strasburg Train Shop, a model railroading hobby shop with an extensive used train department and Thomas' Trackside Station, offering over 1200 Thomas and FriendsTM items.

The Choo Choo Barn display is open daily from 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., March 12 – December 31, 2011. Admission price is $7 for adults and $4 for children ages 3-11. For more information and to learn about group rates, please call (717) 687-7911 or visit

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Disclosure: My family and I received complimentary tickets to visit the Choo Choo Barn.