Bringing a Layout to the Show

Becoming an Exhibitor

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! What better way for the general public to become model railroaders than to see operating model railroads up close?

“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 an 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.

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The Purpose of the Show

Model trains at Gamages department store, London, 16 December 1936. Please note this image is currently not fully processed.

60+ years ago model railroading was more a part of our culture. 

Department stores had model train layouts set up for the holiday season. Many boys received a train set for Christmas. A train around the Christmas tree was common. Boys debated which was better; Lionel O Gauge or American Flyer S gauge. Hobby shops were common. lionel_ad3

Full size railroads still ran steam locomotives. This was the days before the end of passenger trains and the consolidation of the railroads and abandonments. Short-lines and branch-lines were more abundant. Most small towns had a rail line and depot. Kids were fascinated by railroads. This
translated to a fascination of model trains. 

Yes, some of those things have changed.

But not everything.

People still love model trains. 

Tens of thousands of people come to the shows to see what this hobby is all about. When you bring a layout to the show you are inspiring them to get involved by sharing your knowledge of model railroading and your creativity in layout building. This hobby can grow and you can be a part of what grows it. 

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Common Questions About Bringing a Layout to 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.

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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!

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Do you help with expenses to bring a layout?

We have some budget to help clubs and individuals with their out-of-pocket expenses for bringing a layout to the show and we try to help where we can. There is a space on the layout application for assistance with expenses.

Can I present a seminar or workshop?

Absolutely! Educating the general public on the various aspects of our wonderful hobby is important to the show and the growth of the hobby. Being able to see first hand how benchwork is done, how DCC works, or how trees are made will inspire more people to get involved.Bachmann Theater Banner Art

We’ll help you with what you need for your presentation. Bachmann Trains sponsors the “Bachmann Theater” which has seating, electric access, and multimedia projector and screen for Powerpoint presentations.

Pick your favorite model railroad topic and present to people who want to hear what you have to say!

Our layout application is where you sign up to present a workshop. Don’t delay, there are only so many time slots available.

Does my layout have to be part of a model railroad club to participate?

No, not at all. Individuals are encouraged to bring their layouts to the show.

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.

 

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Layout Application (PDF)

Printable form if submitting by mail or fax

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Exhibitor Resources

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

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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.