All Aboard for History Museum’s Train Day

By August 23, 2022Press Releases

LOS ALTOS, CA (August 23, 2022) Los Altos History Museum will be transforming its courtyard and Main Gallery into elaborate model railroad layouts for “Train Day: Making a Town,” slated for Saturday, September 10 from 10am-3pm.

Four train clubs will set up scaled renditions of prototypes complete with scenery, whimsical engines, and cars equipped with steam, lights, and sound. Visitors of all ages will have the opportunity to learn about model railroading and the history of locomotives while mingling with train enthusiasts, and ask club members any questions about the mechanics and electronics of their trains and layouts.

Participating train clubs include:

  • California Central Coast On30 Modular Group
  • Golden Gate Lionel Railroad Club
  • Diablo Pacific Short Line
  • Bay Area Garden Railway Society Live Steam Group

A mini exhibit of the Museum’s 2009 exhibition “Trains Mean Business: The Growth of Los Altos” will showcase how the train made the town.

“When the Southern Pacific created a spur set of tracks to allow for a shorter distance in traveling time to Santa Cruz from San Francisco, it opened up an entire world of possibilities. The community of Los Altos is one of the beneficiaries,” said Jane Reed, who, along with Margie Alving, curated the Town section of the Museum’s new Permanent Exhibition, opening in 2023. “Without the train, chances are the Los Altos area would have been part of the established and growing City of Mountain View.”

Visitors to “Train Day” may purchase hot dogs, chips and drinks from The Hot Dog Dude, ice cream from Baskin Robbins, and train-themed gifts, toys and books from the Museum’s Gift Shop. Receive a train card at the gate, and have it punched at each station to enter a raffle to win a prize basket and a free one-year Museum membership.

Admission is $7/person, free to ages 12 and under and Museum members. Pay at the gate. Learn more at

Los Altos History Museum began in 1977 with the opening of the J. Gilbert Smith House historic farmhouse, built in 1905. In 2001, the Los Altos History Museum opened its modern building next door, which houses the Museum’s collections, permanent and changing exhibitsstore and administrative offices. The Museum and its grounds are available for rent during evenings and weekends. Its collections are owned by the City of Los Altos and are managed by an independent nonprofit organization, whose staff and volunteers are responsible for all programs and operations.

The Museum is open Thursday through Sunday, from noon-4pm. Admission is free. Tours of the J. Gilbert Smith House are available during open hours. The outdoor agricultural exhibit, gardens and picnic area are accessible beyond Museum hours. For more information, visit:, email, or phone 650.948.9427 x14.

Media Contact:
Los Altos History Museum: Elisabeth I. Ward, 650.948.9427 x10,