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:
TRAIN GUIDE SPONSOR
“Welcome to our 50th anniversary season. Fifty Years! We are excited to invite you to join us during what should be a special season of remembering our past while looking forward to our future.
Keep reading to learn about the special events for the year, the Dinner Train dates, and to hear about the progress we’ve made over the winter in our maintenance shop.
On Friday, May 27th, we will celebrate the actual 50th anniversary of the first departures on the fledgling tourist railroad then known as the East Troy Trolley Museum. On that weekend — and for the remainder of the season — we will have many historical items on display from the early years.
Our first Dinner Train departs on May 7th. This special Kentucky Derby train departs early so guests can be back in the depot in time to watch the Kentucky Derby together. Appropriate food and drink will be available and guests are encouraged to dress for the occasion, including hats! I suggest you check your calendars, check the menus online, compare notes with friends, and then book your dining event as soon as you can. Some of these trains fill up quickly!
I stand on the shoulders of generations of volunteers who have kept our cars running, repaired our tracks, restored our historic cars and contributed untold thousands of volunteer hours and several millions of dollars so you can have the chance to ride our trains today.”
Seasonal/Special Train Events
- WISCONSIN GREAT NORTHERN RAILROAD – They are looking forward to welcoming all back in 2022. Book your trip now!
- ANNUAL TRAIN EXHIBIT at the Mitchell Park Domes winter train show opens to the public on January 29, 2022.
- COLLECTIBLE ALL SCALE TRAIN EXHIBIT – 2022 event TBD.
- MAD CITY ANNUAL MODEL RAILROAD SHOW & SALE Planning for the next show on the 19th and 20th of February 2022 at the Mad City Model Railroad Show and Sale.
- DELAVAN TRAIN SHOW: The 2022 Delavan Train Show arrives in historic downtown Delavan, WI on March 19 & 20, 2022.
- BUNNY TRAIN – EAST TROY ELECTRIC RAILROAD: Will take place in 2022 on Saturdays April 9, 16 and Sunday April 10th
- TRAINS, TRACKS, AND SWITCHES AT SHOREHAVEN: Canceled in 2021 and 2022
- LIONEL RAILROAD CLUB of Milwaukee- Semi annual open house in April is TBD. Open on Fridays year-round! The club is currently only open to members.
- TITLETOWN TRAIN SHOW– Planning for April 9 & 10, 2022 at the KI Convention Center in downtown Green Bay.
- Milwaukee Zoo Train
- Little Amerricka 15 minute train ride through the park + farm. See the zebras!
- Opening weekend at the MILWAUKEE LIGHT ENGINEERING SOCIETY (Cedarburg)
- Day out with Thomas – Green Bay (National RR Museum) – TBD for 2021
- RAILFEST/Railfan Day at the East Troy Railroad Museum – June 19th, 2021 where each train will run with a different set of railroad cars. Many of our historic cars will be on display and there will be face painting and popcorn in the East Troy Depot.
- Bay Beach Train – Green Bay (May through September see WEBSITE)
- Whiskey River RAILROAD DAY at Little Amerricka – TBD for 2021
- Chicago and Military Day at the East Troy Railroad Museum – August 14th 2021 – Our historic South Shore and Chicago Elevated cars will
be featured and we hope to have interpretive staff and rangers from the National Park Service with us.
- Concert in the Park – New for 2021, the East Troy Electric railroad is running trains from East Troy to a “Concerts in the Park” series at Indianhead Park in Mukwonago on June 11 th , July 9th , August 7th and September 11th .
- Pumpkin Train at Little Amerricka
- LIONEL RAILROAD CLUB of Milwaukee- Semi annual open houses
- 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 13-14, 2021
- MILWAUKEE LIGHT ENGINEERING SOCIETY Pumpkin Run Train in Cedarburg [Free] including night runs. See all the events HERE.
- 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
- East Troy Electric RailRoad Beer Tasting Train – September 4th, 2021 – This joint dining event with the Black Point Estate in Lake Geneva features beer tasting, beer history, beer trivia and amazing hors d’oeuvres while you ride.
- East Troy Electric RailRoad Harvest Fest Trains – September 10 to October 24 th, 2021 – Take a train to Harvest Fest at the Elegant Farmer! Tickets must be purchased in advance for these popular trains.
- The magical ride will take you a half hour from East Troy 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) Not in 2020 or 2021.
- Polar Express Ride out of Green Bay WEBSITE
- SANTA TRAIN at the Mid-Continent Railway in North Freedom – Cancelled in 2021
- TRAIN DISPLAY at Country Springs Hotel [FREE]
- 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.
- ZEIMER’S MODEL TRAIN OPEN HOUSE 2021 dates TBD
- Train Display at Shady Lane Greenhouse in Menomonee Falls. The KFH Legacy train will run on Saturdays!
Kids Run Trains at the Layouts at Trainfest®
GO FOR A [TRAIN] RIDE - TRAIN TRIP IDEAS
Here is a list of some places you can ride a train and approximately how far they are away from Lake Country. Please call for open status before attending!
- Wisconsin Dells Train WEBSITE (1.5 hours)
- Safari Zoo Train at the Milwaukee Zoo WEBSITE
- Bay Beach TRAIN in Green Bay (2 hours)
- EAST TROY RAILROAD MUSEUM in East Troy
- 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)
- Take a Ride on the AMTRAK TRAIN
- Milwaukee Light Engineering Society TRAIN RIDES in Cedarburg (45 minutes)
- 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!
East Troy Railroad Museum
- 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!
- Whelans Ice Cream & Coffee in Oconomowoc – There is a wooden train in the patio garden
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
- 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. My kids call this the “Train park”.
- 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!
- Lionel Railroad Club of Milwaukee
- 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!
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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.