A visit to the Old Town Model Railroad Depot will take you back in time, to the 1950's, where various trains travel over a 2,500 sq. ft. layout which features a city at night including over 100 buildings with lights and flashing neon signs, a ballpark, zoo, depot, industrial district and even a Drive-In Theatre! Continuing on your journey you will pass a large farm, quaint country town, beautiful mountain range, a large lake (complete with sharks) and dam with trestles traversing over a large gorge. Visitors may even try their hand at being the engineer on this remote controlled exhibit.
Our Gift Shop features a wide variety of railroad related items for sale, as well as some beautiful artwork, metal signs (great for the man cave), pins, hats, shirts, vintage authentic railroad jackets and even our very own DVDs!
Gary Hickok, the man behind the depot, grew up in the 1950's in Western New York where his father worked for the Erie Railroad. Lionel trains were the mainstay of hobbies at that time and Gary built his first layout at the age of 9. Returning to the hobby with his son rekindled the attraction and Gary began collecting trains over the next decade. Retirement from his professional career in early 2013 presented him with the opportunity to build his dream layout in Old Town San Diego where his collection and vision could be shared with the locals, visitors to Old Town, as well as model RR enthusiasts worldwide.
The Depot prides itself on being THE PLACE to host Birthday or Retirement parties, complete with a Scavenger Hunt on request. We will soon be adding a monthly wineshare event to help introduce people to the "trainiac" hobby as well as to new wines! Sign up for our e-mail newsletter and be sure and tell your friends!
We run over 100 different trains, with everything from the Santa Fe Super Chief to the Norfolk & Western 6-11J Passenger, right on down to the BNSF Coal train, complete with smoke!
As crazy as it may sound, we don't have an entrance fee. We operate solely on donations. Yes, we have operating costs and overhead but we also know how expensive family entertainment can be, so we let folks pay what they can and hope they will share their enthusiasm with others.
We are also happy to have volunteer docents join our team, so if you know a fellow "trainiac" with a few extra hours a week, have them contact us!
We love our visitors, so feel free to drop in during normal business hours.
2415 San Diego Avenue, San Diego, CA 92110
Open every day, except Tuesday
From: 11am - 6pm
Special events by request.