Families enjoyed Homewood's Rail Fest Saturday in spite of soggy weather

Jackson Blue watches trains zip around a track on one of 
model displays at Homewood Rail Fest on Saturday.
by Eric Crump/HF Chronicle)

Jackson Blue came from Plainfield to watch trains in Homewood. 

The trains that held his attention were models zipping around tracks set in elaborate model villages and countrysides, the centerpieces of Homewood Rail Fest on Saturday, May 16,  in the H-F Park District Auditorium.

"He loves trains," said Matt Blue, Jackson's father, who grew up in Homewood. "He has his own trains at home. He could probably stay here until dinner time."
Jackson was not alone. 

CN's Little Obie takes on 
passengers Saturday in 
the Homewood Village Hall 
parking lot.
(Photo by Eric 
Crump/HF Chronicle)

Although Rail Fest was not quite as big as it has been in years past, according to regular patrons and vendors, it was very popular with the children who flocked around the model train scenes.
"Kids love trains," said Homewood Mayor Richard Hofeld.

He noted that model train operators seemed to have young audiences in mind when they set up this year.

"The table tops seems lower so the kids could see," he said. "In the past, they were more elevated, and it was hard for the younger kids to see."

Kids also got a chance to see real trains as families took rides around downtown Homewood on Canadian National Railway's Little Obie, a scaled-down train that serves as a trolley at events in the area. 

Crowds stood in line for Little Obie rides even through periods of drizzle following several earlier downpours. 

The event's other constituency, railroad buffs, also had much to see and do, Hofeld noted, with a number of vendors set up around the auditorium offering railroad memorabilia and literature.
"It's typical of our events, which are all very family oriented," Hofeld said.

Contact Eric Crump at [email protected]

Photo gallery:
Scenes from Homewood Rail Fest 2015

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A great community deserves a great newspaper. The HF Chronicle was created in June 2014 as an online publication. In December 2015 we began monthly print publication, too. Our mission is to chronicle the life of our community — news by, for, and about the people of Homewood and Flossmoor, Illinois.


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