The Somerset County 4-H Trainmasters annual Spring Train show at the Ted Blum 4-H Center, 310 Milltown Road, Bridgewater, NJ is being held on June 8th and 9th, from 10am-5pm both days. Admission is $4.00 for adults and $2.00 for children under 12 years old. Children under the age of 2 years old are free. The first 20 children through the doors each day will also receive a free prize.

Family Four Packs of Tickets donated by the Delaware River Railroad Excursions will be awarded as Door Prizes at the end of each show day. The winner need not be present to win. Door prize tickets will be available at the door.

The Trainmasters’ 40-by-60-foot layout will be on display and continuously running throughout the event. Multiple trains will run across thousands of feet of track simultaneously through numerous scenery displays. The scenery represents a range of styles — each created by different members of the club. The Spring show is a trial run for the Trainmasters in preparation for the annual Somerset County 4-H Fair on August 7th-9th, as the 1st year members are testing the electronics on their modules.

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The club has an expansive collection of O-scale trains, including Thomas the Tank Engine and The Polar Express, as well as rare and classic trains. There will be interactive play activities for younger children, as well as craft activities, and small animals to pet to keep siblings occupied owned by members of the Somerset County 4-H People Pick Me Ups Club.

A varied selection of new, and quality pre-owned train items will be for sale, as well as a few select vendors and crafters will fill the main train layout area. Concessions will be available for purchase each day of the show, from snacks to a full lunch. A seating area will be offered to enjoy some time off your feet.

Members of the 4-H Trainmasters range in age from fourth-graders to one year out of high school. The Somerset County 4-H Trainmasters Club currently has over 30 members from Hunterdon, Middlesex, Somerset, and Warren Counties. It was the first youth-led model railroad club in the state when it formed in 2000 with six kids.

The Metropolitan Division of the Train Collectors Association (METCA) will be returning to the Spring Show to continue to expand their youth division and to promote and keep the hobby alive. Kevin Quinn, METCA President states “The Metropolitan Division of the Train Collectors Association (TCA) is very proud to have the Somerset County 4-H Trainmasters operate as our kid’s club. The kids represent the very foundation of TCA, 4-H and our hobby. ”

METCA is made up from 20 counties in three states, NJ, NY, and CT, building friendships through collecting and operating model trains. Free METCA youth memberships will be available at the event on both days for children up to 18 years of age.

Also returning to the annual spring show is New Jersey Operation Lifesaver with important safety information to remember when around trains and train tracks.

Proceeds from the annual spring train show support the Somerset County 4-H Trainmasters’ College Fund, support of the 4-H Association, and other club activities. Each year the Somerset County 4-H Trainmasters Club awards a $1000 scholarship to a graduating Senior who is a member in good standing of any Somerset County 4-H club that will pursue a course of study in the field of Science, and sends a club member to the National Railway Historical Society rail camp each summer.

The Somerset County 4-H Trainmasters facebook event is at: https://www.facebook.com/events/1287365361403198. The Trainmasters club’s website, www.trainmasters.sc4-h.org, also contains additional information about the club. For directions to the show, please visit somerset.njaes.rutgers.edu/directions. For additional information, contact the Somerset County 4-H office at 908-526-6644. We hope to see you there!

About Somerset County 4-H

The 4-H Youth Development Program is part of Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Somerset County, an off-campus division of Rutgers University. Rutgers Cooperative Extension is an equal opportunity program provider and employer. Contact your local Extension Office for information regarding special needs or accommodations. Contact the State Extension Director’s Office if you have concerns related to discrimination, (732) 932-5000, ext. 584.

The 4-H Youth Development Program is part of Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station -Cooperative Extension, 4-H educational programs are offered to all youth, grades K-13, on an age-appropriate basis, without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, disability, atypical hereditary cellular or blood trait, marital status, domestic partnership status, military service, veteran status, and any other category protected by law. For additional information, contact: somersetcounty4h@co.somerset.nj.us or nj4h.rutgers.edu.