Selling at the Show

What is the World’s Greatest Hobby on Tour?

The World’s Greatest Hobby on Tour is a high-quality model railroad show designed to introduce the general public to model railroading.  We target both consumers and die-hard modelers. The WGH on Tour features many exciting attractions for attendees including a Thomas the Tank Engine riding train and play area, operating model railroad layouts, product demonstrations, hobby shops, how-to seminars and much more.  It’s NOT a swap meet, flea market or junk show.

Since 2004, World’s Greatest Hobby on Tour has been promoting the hobby across the country. Our staff is dedicated to providing the best events that truly promote the hobby in a positive way. We want people attending our shows to leave so excited about model railroading they can't wait to start building a model railroad!

Why Exhibit with Us?

PROVEN EXPOSURE with over 40,000 attendees at some shows!

AFFORDABLE BOOTH PRICES when compared to other large model railroad shows.

EXHIBITOR SHIPPING PROGRAM that can ship your merchandise from show to show for less than many shows charge for drayage to take your display from the dock to your booth.

EXPERIENCED SHOW STAFF that has managed over 1,000 exhibitions

BE RECOGNIZED AS AN INDUSTRY LEADER!
All major manufacturers are present.

Need a recommendation?

Ask one of our exhibitors

Value

16 (2)Booths start at only $225

With our average attendance of 25,000 people per show that's only $.009 cents per person. 

Why you need to participate

The World’s Greatest Hobby on Tour (WGH on Tour) is the only show specifically designed to create new model railroaders. Your business depends on having customers and we are building your future customers.

  • WGH on Tour is LARGE - Our typical show occupies over 100,000 sqft.
  • WGH on Tour is WELL ATTENDED - Over 1 million people have attended the show; our average attendance is 25,000 people per show.
  • WGH on Tour is PROMOTED & ADVERTISED - No other hobby show in the country spends as much on advertising as the WGH on Tour. Thousands of TV commercials promote the show and model railroading.
  • WGH on Tour is AFFORDABLE - Our booth prices are extremely low, competitive with much smaller regional shows. We have no unreasonable union or drayage costs.
  • WGH on Tour is PROFESSIONAL - Our shows are professional pipe and drape decorated shows held in high quality venues.
  • WGH on Tour is NATIONAL - We travel to all the major markets bringing our message of model railroad promotion to a new market at every show. There are many fine regional shows held at the same location annually, but WGH on Tour reaches far more new customers.
  • WGH on Tour is for INDUSTRY LEADERS - The biggest and best manufacturers participate in the WGH on Tour. If you want your brand to be known as an industry leader, you need to exhibit at the WGH on Tour.
  • WGH on Tour is EASY - The show is easy to do business with and features services like shipping that makes exhibiting worry free.

Exhibiting at the WGH on Tour is an investment in your brand, your future and the health of the model railroad industry.

What some industry leaders have said

“Plain and simple, this is the kind of show we need for the model railroad industry. WGH on Tour is a mix of entertainment, excitement and education about the hobby….This type of show is our big chance to bring in new hobbyists (a.k.a., customers). It’s our opportunity to show the general public what a great hobby model railroading really is for the entire family.” Zana Ireland - Digitrax

“As a retailer, I was a skeptic. I did not believe there would be a large group that had never been in a hobby store. Was I wrong!! The majority of the people we interviewed had not been in a store. They are looking forward to visiting one of the stores. We passed out 3,000 flyers. Local hobby shops were busy over the weekend and we are continuing to see interest generated by the show.” Fred Hill  - Past President Hobby Manufacturers Association

“This was one of the best shows I have ever attended.... You couldn't even move around inside our booth because of the number of people.” Bud Reece - Bachmann Trains

 

What people are saying about the show

Kay and I took advantage of the warm weather and took a drive to Atlanta to attend the WGH show at the Cobb Galleria on Saturday. LOTS of young children and parents viewing the several large operating modular layouts in the popular gauges, including a Lego layout. There was even a nice two-rail scale O layout. Lionel, MTH, Carstens Publications, OGR , Bachmann, Kato, Athearn and other manufacturers were present to answer questions about their respective products. Very good exposure for our hobby!”

“I gotta tell you, I went to this show yesterday and had a ball!!! I've been to a lot of "train shows" and "train meets" and none of them compared to this. Just the sheer amount of layouts was unreal. All of which, regardless of scale, were great! This show really gave great exposure to our hobby. I've never seen a television commercial for a train show before. This one was advertising on WABC...NETWORK TV PEOPLE!!! Right after the 11:00 news!

“The World's Greatest Hobby on Tour is probably one of the most important shows out there for a model train company. The exposure of our products and the hobby of model railroading to new enthusiasts is worth its weight in gold. No other event in our industry is promoted as well and effectively as these shows. My hat goes off to the folks that run this show…and to all of the manufacturers who support it. I constantly read postings asking "how can we get kids interested in model railroading?" This is it folks. It is a family oriented show directed at what we like to call ‘new blood’.

“I went to WGH Columbus.......it was so packed Sat we could not get in and went back Sun early......STILL tons of kids and families!! If the hobby keeps 1/4 of these folks it will be in good shape.”

You’ll Be In Good Company

Hundreds of organizations have participated in the show since it began in 2004. Be a part of the only show specifically designed to grow the hobby of model railroading.

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Plus Many More!

Selling at the Show – Booth Space

Manufacturers & Distributors

This is a great occasion to expose your products to consumers of every level, from very experienced hobbyists to those brand new to the hobby. You can create new customers for your products and help create life-long members for the hobby trade. In addition, you will be able to meet with other members of the trade and industry including distributors and hobby shops. This gives you an opportunity to see what is being done in the hobby industry by your competitors, the model and train community and by the distribution channel.

Hobby Shops

Local hobby shops have a great chance to capitalize on the excitement this show generates with both sales at the show and with creating new long-term customers for your stores. You can seize the opportunity to sell a customer their first train and to become their long-term provider of all things model train related. This is an excellent environment to promote your store.

“The show consistently does what it was designed to do -

successfully introduce thousands of people

to the hobby of model railroading”

Be a part of the show and help grow the hobby of model railroading.

The model railroad industry believes in the mission of the show, which is to promote the hobby of model railroading to the general public. Each show has representation from all the best manufacturers in the industry.

The show has a proven record of getting people to the show.

(See our list of previous show attendances).

The World’s Greatest Hobby on Tour consistently attracts an average of 25,000 people to each show proving there is indeed interest in the hobby of model railroading. The show holds the record for the largest attended two-day train show ever with the Chantilly, Virginia show in January of 2010 with 41,036 people. That broke the previous record which was the World’s Greatest Hobby on Tour in Philadelphia, PA in January of 2009 with 40,152 people.

We understand that a show promoter’s job is to promote!

Advertising & Promotion

We spend, on average, over $60,000 per show on advertising. This includes ads in all the major model railroad magazines like Model Railroader, Railroad Model Craftsman, Classic Toy Trains, O Gauge Railroading, Model Railroad News, and more.

Locally, before each show we run extensive television, radio, newspaper, and Internet advertising specifically targeted at reaching people who have an interest in the hobby but have never attended a train show before.

Tens of thousands of emails and postcards are also sent to people who have been to train shows in the past.

Exhibitor Application (PDF)

Use this form to reserve booths by mail or fax

More Info

Exhibitor Resources

Already confirmed for the show? Click here for show specific details.

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Common Questions About Selling at the Show

What is a “booth”?

Each booth measures 10′ x 10′ and has 8′ drape behind. Booths may be combined to make larger areas.

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Can I participate even though I do not own a hobby shop and am not a model railroad manufacturer?

Yes. While most of the show consists of new model railroad product there is a strong market for used product as well. We welcome all aspects of the hobby to be a part of the show. We do ask that all exhibitors that participate present their merchandise, new or used, in a clean, professional manner.

What is the World’s Greatest Hobby on Tour?

The World’s Greatest Hobby on Tour is a high-quality model railroad show designed to introduce the general public to model railroading.  We target both consumers and die-hard modelers. The WGH on Tour features many exciting attractions for attendees including a Thomas the Tank Engine riding train and play area, operating model railroad layouts, product demonstrations, hobby shops, how-to seminars and much more.  It’s NOT a swap meet, flea market or junk show.

wgh03

Since 2004, World’s Greatest Hobby on Tour has been promoting the hobby across the country. Our staff is dedicated to providing the best events that truly promote the hobby in a positive way. We want people attending our shows to leave so excited about model railroading they can’t wait to start building a model railroad!

wghweb (34)600x600

Do I have to sell model trains to be a part of the show?

Yes. The show is designed to promote the hobby of model railroading so exhibitors have to be model railroad/hobby related.

Can I reserve space for the show online?

At the present time we do not have a way to accept applications online. You can submit your application by mail, email attachment, or fax.

Visit our Contact Us page for contact methods.

What are my trains worth?

If you inherited a collection of trains you may feel overwhelmed and not sure where to start understanding the value of what you have.

The best thing you can do is educate yourself on what you have. Speaking with our experts at the show is a great way to get first hand of the market value of your collection. Books like the Greenberg price guides are somewhat useful as well – although prices have fluctuated in the past several years and since the books are printed they can only show you the estimated value at the time the book went to press.

oldtrain

The one thing we always stress is to not sell your collection to the first person who makes you an offer. We can’t emphasize this enough.

If you have decided you want to sell your trains there are really two ways to approach it. If you sell your trains yourself piece by piece you will get the most money out of the collection because you will be selling to the end user.

If you sell your collection in one lump sum to a reseller you may only get 50 cents on the dollar since this person has to sell everything piece by piece, carry the inventory from show to show, and pay out a large amount of money to you in advance to purchase the collection.

There are way too many stories of people only getting 5 to 10 cents on the dollar from a reseller because they didn’t know the value of what they had.

It pays to do your research and understand what you have!

Exhibitor Information Newsletter

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Show Hours

Friday
9:00a - 8:00p • Set-up

Saturday
10:00a - 6:00p • Public Hours

Sunday
10:00a - 5:00p • Public Hours
5:00p - 10:00p • Tear-down

 

 

 The World's Greatest Hobby on Tour is a TrainShow.com production.

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Our mission is to promote the hobby of model railroading.