A Lake Country Kid’s Guide to [All Things] TRAIN

We know that our Lake Country kiddos love TRAINS. That’s why we’ve put together the ultimate Train Guide for Train-loving Kids.

This guide is categorized by:

    • Seasonal Train Events
    • Train Trip Ideas
    • Train Dining
    • Parks/Farms/Places with play trains
    • Railroad Museums
    • Railroad Clubs
    • Train Hobby Shops
    • Hidden Gem Train Spots

Train Guide Sponsor

East Troy Railroad Museum

East Troy Railroad

Operating on the last 7.5 mile stretch of the original interurban system in the state of Wisconsin, you can experience fun for all ages with Dinner, Pizza, Burger, Oktoberfest, Birthday, Christmas, Bunny and whatever other train you can think of!

The depot is open, the historic cars are cleaned and polished, the long winter has come to an end, and the East Troy Electric Railroad is ready to kick off its 2019 season on Saturday, April 27th. Trains will depart on the hour from the East Troy Depot starting at 10:00 am. The last train departs at 3:00 pm. Trains run every Saturday and Sunday through the first weekend in November. They will run three times a day on Fridays starting May 31st.

Seasonal/Special Train Events


Pumpkin Train Rides

    • Pumpkin Train at Little Amerricka
    • Annual Model Railroad Open House Nov event at the Oconomowoc Historical Society hosted by Milwaukee North Western Railroad
    • Free admission to the Oconomowoc Historical Society while trains are running
    • TRAINFEST® , America’s Largest Operating Model Railroad Show with five football fields of running trains and family activities, at State Fair Park is November 9-10, 2019
    • Autumn and Pumpkin Train Ride weekends at the Mid-Continent Railway in North Freedom during October
    • The Great Pumpkin Train at the National Railroad museum in Green Bay
trainfest train guide image
Kids Run Trains at the Layouts at  Trainfest®

Christmas Time

    • Easy Troy Railroad Santa Train Rides
      • The magical ride will take you a half hour from East T
      • Ticket Happy Pass Trainfestroy Depot (2002 Church Street, East Troy, WI) to Santa’s workshop located at the Elegant Farmer. Here children can visit Santa and get a photo taken with the jolly elf himself! Santa’s workshop wouldn’t be complete without a craft project and some hot chocolate and cookies to enjoy after working on those crafts!
    • Holiday Train Comes through Wisconsin (Oconomowoc & Hartland nearest locations)
    • Polar Express Ride out of Green Bay website (sold out in 2019!)
    • Santa Train at the Mid-Continent Railway in North Freedom runs November 2018
    • Train Display at Country Springs Hotel [FREE] (photo to the right)train
      • Christmas Village, one of two buildings located at the end of the trail, is home to an amazing model train display. Featuring six model trains running throughout four different levels of animated scenes, this display is sure to be a hit with people of all ages. Also located in Christmas Village are additional holiday displays, including an area to take photos, and a concession area where guests can purchase refreshments.


    • Annual Train Exhibit at the Milwaukee Domes dates are January 19 – April 7, 2019. The 2019 theme is Miniture Milwaukee.
  • Snow Train at the Mid-Continent Railway in North Freedom – CANCELLED in 2019


East Troy Bunny Train

    • Delavan Train Show: Open 9:00 am to 4:00 pm Saturday March 9; Open 10:00 am to 4:00 pm on Sunday March 10, 2019. Admission and parking are free!

Summer Months

    • Milwaukee Zoo Train Open (May – September approximately)
    • Day out with Thomas – Green Bay (National RR Museum) June 12 – 16, 2019
    • Railfest at the East Troy Railroad Museum – June 22
    • Bay Beach Train – Green Bay (May through September see website)
    • Whiskey River Railroad Day  – July 13 at Little Amerricka
    • Chicago Day at the East Troy Railroad Museum – The East Troy Railroad Museum, Indiana Dunes National Park, and the Pullman
      National Monument are hosting a joint interpretative program featuring historic Chicago, South Shore
      & South Bend Railroad Cars on Saturday, July 13, during the Museum’s annual “Chicago Day” event
      in East Troy, Wisconsin.
    • 3 Summer Trainfest Builder Clinics – details here (June 9, July 21, August 18)
    • Union Pacific’s ‘Big Boy’ passing through Southeastern Wisconsin (Milwaukee) on July 26 from 8:00 to 10:00 am.

Go for a [Train] Ride – Train TRIP Ideas

    • Wisconsin Dells Train website (1.5 hours)
    • Safari Zoo Train at the Milwaukee Zoo website
    • Bay Beach Train in Green Bay (2 hours)
    • Little Amerricka Train – Marshall (40 minutes)
    • National Railroad Museum Train Ride – Green Bay (2 hours)
    • Mid-Continent Railway Museum Rides – North Freedom (1.5 hours)
    • Milwaukee Light Engineering Society Train Rides in Cedarburg (45 minutes)
    • Jelly-Belly Factory Train Tour in Pleasant Prairie (1 hour)
    • Take the whole family on a trip back in time with a ride on the vintage LumberJack Steam Train in Laona (3.5 hours)
Know of any other places to ride a train in Wisconsin? Tell us in the comments and we will add to the guide for all to enjoy!
Santa Train Ride, East Troy Electric Railroad East Troy Christmas Trains Lake Country Family Fun
East Troy Railroad Museum

Train Dining

    • Choo Choo Charlie’s in Kenosha – Kid-centric train restaurant constantly has train-themed movies playing, has four different trains running
    • PC Junction in Bailey’s Harbor – This is the ultimate train-themed restaurant. Every detail here has been thought of, from outside decor and play areas to the interior where your food is delivered via model train.
    • Buffalo Phil’s in Wisconsin Dells – Your food is delivered on a TRAIN!
    • La Estacion Mexican Restaurant in Waukesha – It literally has seating in an old box car and is by the tracks
    • Maxim’s at The Oconomowoc Depot – Boxcar dining right by a real railroad. Model railroad runs in the restaurant.
    • Titletown Brewery & Restaurants in Green Bay – When trains go by, they ring the bell!
    • The Crossing Restaurant in Pewaukee – located near a train track
    • SteamYard Coffee Shop in Hartland -Mildy train themed and not too far from train tracks!
Do you know of any special train-themed dining? Tell us in the comments and we will add to the guide for all to enjoy!

Parks/Farms/Places with Trains

Green Meadows
    • Imagination Station – There is a play train in the little kid area
    • Madeline Park in Sussex – Train-themed park (new!) in Sussex. N6523284 Elm Drive , Sussex. Madeline Park is a 7 acre open space park located on the northeast edge of the Stonefield subdivision on Waukesha Avenue, south of the Union Pacific Railroad line.
    • Cushing Park – There is a wooden train with steering wheel
    • Green Meadows – They have a brand new wooden train and train room! The train room has ride on trains, over 5 train tables, train toys of all kinds and more!
    • Shady Lane Green House Menomonee Falls – The KFH Legacy Model Train resides in a separate greenhouse (the House of Blooms) and measures 4,800 square feet. train runs every Saturday and Sunday 10:00am till 3:00. It is always best to call before coming.
    • Wales “Train” Park –Right off of the Glacier Drumlin trail in Wales is a wooden play train. Grab a coffee at Mama D’s and enjoy it while your kiddos play on the train. The train was just updated by Wales Family Dental!
    • Oconomowoc Historical Society – The museum in Oconomowoc has a model train display also. On the night of trick or treat, the museum is open with free admission and lots of treats! Trains are running that night as well.
Know of other fun places with trains? Comment below and we will add to the list!

Railroad Museums

National Railroad Museum Green Bay
National Railroad Museum Green Bay

Railroad Clubs

Lionel Railroad Club of Milwaukee

Parkland Plaza
2721 South Calhoun Road
New Berlin, WI 53151
(262) 754-9900
(entrance in back of building)

“One of the Oldest Railroad Clubs in

Open to the public Fridays, 1 to 10 pm (Free)
 (and Saturday & Sunday hours October > April 1 – 5 pm)
Don’t miss the trains

Milwaukee Light Engineering Society

2620 Country Aire Dr
Cedarburg, Wisconsin

We are a live steam club that has almost a mile of 7.5″ track on 6.5 acres.

The Milwaukee Light Engineering Society was founded in 1969. M.L.E.S. is open to all individuals interested in mechanical devices and all phases of their construction.
Know of other local railroad clubs? Comment below and we will add to the list!

Train Hobby Shops

Hiawatha Hobbies Silvernail Shopping Center, 2026 Silvernail Rd. Pewaukee, WI 53072 262-544-4131

Sommerfeld’s Trains & Hobbies 12620 W. Hampton Ave. Butler, WI 53007 262-783-7797

South Side Trains 3979 S. Howell Ave. Milwaukee, WI 53207 414-482-1566

Walthers Showroom 5619 West Florist Ave. Milwaukee, WI 53218 414-461-1050

Madison Hobby Stop 6622 Mineral Point Road Madison, WI 53705 Phone 608-829-3820

Want your local railroad shop added to the list? Comment below and we will add it!

Hidden Gem Spots

    • Nixon Park – Trains go through the area and you can see/hear them from the park
    • Bridge in Butler, WI overlooking the train depot
    • Dickten Park in Nashotah. Trains can be seen going by on the tracks, which are across the street (a safe distance) from the park.  Also, there’s a fire station next door.
    • Frame Park Waukesha –  you are bound to see/hear a train here if you play
    • Kiwanis Village Park in Pewaukee- three trains went by in ten minutes when we were there the other day (you can also catch trains from Pewaukee Beach)
Where else do you and your families view real, live trains? Comment below and we will add to the list! 

Don’t forget to share your train fun with Lake Country Family Fun on Instagram (IG) with #lovelcff. 

Find us on IG here.


A Lake Country Kid's Guide to [all things] train

Tell us YOUR Favorite TRAIN Activities!

Do you have a train ride, a train dining spot, a train trip, a train viewing area or park with a train that is not on this list? I bet you do! Well…share the train tips with your fellow Lake Country Families. Email them to us at Erin@lakecountryfamilyfun(dot)com or use the contact form button. We will add them to the list.