What you will see on most garden railroads are trains going in circles. Our garden railroad is not like that. On our railroad, a train picks up cars at one place and drops them off at another place. Each train is run by a crew of young people six years old and older. The times when we run the trains are called operating sessions. The people who run our trains and do some other jobs at our operating sessions are called operators. In this part of our website we tell people what they need to know to be operators on our railroad. The more you know about how our operating sessions work, the better you will be able to work with the other operators and the more fun you will have.

The name of our railroad is the Lake Town & Shire. We have an operating session every month in the spring, summer, and fall. When we know the days and times we will run trains, we put them on the home page of this website. We also send out email to tell people when we will be running. If you want to receive these emails, tell me at

Click the links on the left to look at the lessons. Take a look below at some pictures of our operators running trains in past years.

PHOTOS (Click on image for larger view)

The regular operators in 2013 included Anna, Thomas, Luke, Jarod, Max, Sam, Cade, Bailey, Noah, Aidan, Kavya, and Kartic.
Ethan, Evan, and Aidan examine some lumber cars in front of the Dragon Toy and Chair Company in Dale
A freight pulls into Bree as Jarod and Bailey get ready to switch the team track/brewery siding.
There are three different sidings to switch at Hobbiton: the team track, the granary siding, and the siding for the produce company and ice house. Kartic uncouples some empty reefers to be iced and loaded with produce while sister Kavya prepares to move the rest of the train forward.
The main yard on the Lake Town & Shire is at Rivendell. Luke uncouples some cars while Noah waits with the throttle and Thomas supervises.

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