World's Greatest Hobby on Tour sets attendance record

32,533 attend model train show making it the most attended ever in Illinois

The World's Greatest Hobby on Tour pulled into the Schaumburg Convention Center on January 16 & 17, 2016, in Schaumburg, Ill., and was host to thousands of people anxious to experience model railroading on a grand scale. Despite the subzero weather on Sunday attendance was strong and by the end of the day all indications were there that the show had surpassed previous attendance records for train shows not only at the Schaumburg Convention Center but the entire state of Illinois. All the leading model railroad manufacturers were at the show including:

● Aero Car Hobby Lubricants ● Alumilite ● Athearn Trains ● Atlas Model Railroad Company ● Bachmann Trains ● Broadway Limited Imports ● Caboose Industries ● Excelle Lubricants ● Kato USA ● Lionel ● MTH Electric Trains ● PIKO America ● Ross Custom Switches ● ● Wm K Walthers ● ZStuff Express

One of the unique highlights featured in the show was a successful world record attempt for the "tallest toy train track". Joe Montilla of Augusta Track created the record-setting HO Scale spiral model railroad that stood an impressive 21 feet 2 inches tall. As of this writing the necessary paperwork for the official record has been submitted to Guinness for their certification of the world record.

The World's Greatest Hobby on Tour is a model railroad show designed to introduce the general public to the hobby in an exciting, family-oriented atmosphere. Each show includes manufacturers, hobby shops, operating train layouts, interactive displays and workshops. Each show provides an in-person introduction to the World's Greatest Hobby: model railroading!

Since the shows began in December of 2004, over one million, three hundred thousand (1,300,000+) people have attended. For most of these people it was their first experience with model railroading. These shows broaden the exposure model railroading receives among the general public.

In the first quarter of 2010, the World's Greatest Hobby on Tour set a record with over 41,000 people attending the show in Washington, DC. This is the largest number of people ever to attend a model railroad show.

The World's Greatest Hobby on Tour travels to cities around the United States promoting the hobby of model railroading in a big, flashy way. The major model railroad manufacturers are represented as well as local model railroad clubs that bring their model railroads to the show for public display. The show also features a free riding train for kids.

The remaining World's Greatest Hobby on Tour stops in 2016 are:

• February 6 & 7, 2016 • St. Paul, MN • St. Paul RiverCentre

• February 20 & 21, 2016 • San Antonio, TX • Henry B. Gonzalez Conv. Center

• March 5 & 6, 2016 • Kansas City, MO • American Royal Complex For more information about the World's Greatest Hobby on Tour, visit The web site includes photos, videos, complete information for attendees, registration and exhibitor information.


For helpful beginner tips, get Model Railroader's Basic Training email series.



World's Greatest Hobby on Tour is a lively and family-friendly event.


Thank you to our generous program sponsors.
Model trains in N, HO, O
Model trains in N, HO, O, G
Magazine, books, videos
Model trains in N, HO
Model trains in N, HO, O
Control systems
Manual switch stands