Strasburg PA Weekend

Discussion in 'The Real Thing- North America' started by hooknlad, Apr 16, 2007.

  1. hooknlad

    hooknlad Member

    Hello all:

    Spent the weekend in Lancaster PA this weekend and did it the right way - woo hoo.. First stop, Made reservations for a 2 nite stay at the Red Caboose Hotel, If you haven't stayed there yet, I highly recommend it.... When we were there, Major storm ripped through ( Nor easter ), This made for an even more pleasant sleep. The caboose rocked and rolled with the wind.. The people ( owners ) are very friendly. The have 2 Pullman cars on the premise which serve as the restaurant. Excellent menu, Great food, Excellent priced !!! All is the ambiance of the Railroad theme.. Every hour on the hour, ( during the day ), The Strasburg Railroad makes its appearance and roars passed the Red Caboose Hotel.

    I also recommend the Black and Decker Outlet store, located at the Rockvale Outlet center. Many great bargains can be found there as well..

    The Strasburg RR was the highlight of the trip... This RR is run solely through Donations and ticket sales and not through Tax dollars. I highly recommend stopping by and saying hi to one of the many volunteers that keep it running.. The fare is $11 - coach, A great price to go back in time for 45 minutes of travel.

    The PA Railroad Museum was also a great time. I was kinda upset to see that My favorite all time engine, The Pennsylvania RR GG 1 was not there - major bummer. It was there many many times before.. It was prolly on loan to another museum or something, or out in the yard.. Its gotta be something to see how they manipulate the Engines, rail cars, in the museum ..
    As mentioned before, being there during a Nor Easter didn't allow us to be outside to visit the turntable or various equipment outdoors....

    The Choo choo barn, located down the street from the Strasburg Railroad, was worth the $5.50 entrance fee. The 1700 sq ft O gauge layout is always worth seeing..

    When We were done there, the Strasburg train shop drew us in.... $600.00 lighter... A lot of good bargains, if you know what you are looking for.. Some prices are steep, but some of the items I got were hard to get at my LHS.. So I guess if you were to figure in S & H, the prices were about right.. The guy behind the counter was there to do his job, ring up my items, no conversation at all.. No discount on a $600 purchase. I had a few $1 items that could've been overlooked during purchase, but everyone needs to make $$$.. $600 is a tough nut from a customer though. I did not even get a thank you or anything.... Major disappointment in the customer service department there...

    Again the weekend, despite the storm was great !!!!! If you get chance to stay at the Red caboose hotel, please do so.... it is an experience.. You'll wish you had, once you leave there. I'm glad we did.. And I will return, time after time..
  2. Torpedo

    Torpedo Member

    I feel for you on that one. Reports like yours will get around, and it will cost them in the end, and deservedly so. What goes around, comes around.
  3. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

    Yeah - These are all great places :) :)

    Did you ask someone?? I think they moved the GG-1 to another track.. Yeah - it's neat how they move stuff around, they have to plan all the moves (Like a yard would) then call across the street for their diesel :) It's really neat!!!
    Did you see the Learning Center and the G gauge layout??? I helped design and build a section of it :) :)

    Glad you had fun there for the most part! :) :)
  4. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

  5. jambo101

    jambo101 Member

  6. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

    Yeah - keep in mind that complaint is 6 years old.... I stayed there in 1998 and had no complaints :) but that's 10 years ago now....
  7. christo

    christo New Member

    The Strasburg Train Shop is one of my closest local trainshops. I am a new hobbyist and was really looking forward to my first trip there which was now about a month ago. After looking through their stock I went to the guy behind the counter and asked for some help. I explained that I was new to the hobby and was interested in doing a PRR passenger train set up. I wanted to know about DCC and good selections for a new railroader.

    I was met with relative disdain and told that I need to do my research and pick what I think was best for me. Hello? I just told the man I was completely new to the hobby and would like some advice on what to consider. I was made to feel like I was a nuisance and he couldn't be bothered with me. I did end up buying some beginners manuals on getting started and track plans. I felt like I was pulling his teeth to make a suggestion on which booklets to buy.

    Overall, I left the place with a less then pleasant experience and I will not be in a rush to go back there again. I genuinely like to support local hobby/game stores, but this place has probably lost me as a future customer. I really don't get it. At the end of the day this is a HOBBY, not a job. It should be something fun and exciting to talk to another person about. This guy had zero time for me and gave me no excitement whatsoever about my newly chosen hobby. It seems his hobby has gone and become his job.

    The Strasburg RR and Museum and Choo Choo barn are fun places and I get to drive by it relatively often. I will likely be riding the RR again soon with my family, but the Train Shop will only be a stop if I feel I want to pick up some more books on wiring and such. Their poor customer interaction (both on the main and upper floors) is annoying and my money can be better spent elsewhere. They may have a few good deals, but it isn't worth the aggrevation of their unenthusiastic employees.
  8. jambo101

    jambo101 Member

  9. hooknlad

    hooknlad Member

    Once again - I only have Kudos for the Red Caboose Motel - I would highly recommend it.!!!!!
  10. Straycat

    Straycat Member

    We stayed in a Caboose in Dunsmuir,California at the Railroad Part Resort.
    They actually had a king size bed, don't know how they got it in there.
    The dining area was also a train car.excellent food. I bought a nice mug and some train Christmas Cards in their gift shop. :D
  11. Renovo PPR

    Renovo PPR Just a Farmer

    I have to admit I don’t think I ever laughed so hard as when I read the review about the lady and the spiders. City people really should stay in the city. I guess she was expecting the accommodations for a Hilton Hotel. They are little old cabooses so what would you expect.

    If you like roughing it a little then you will like it, if not then book a regular hotel. I was also thinking about the windows that would not open, yeah just what I want windows down in farm country for that great country air.

    [FONT=&quot]I have never spent a night there but it is something I wouldn’t mind doing some time. If I do I will understand it is more like a camp than a 4 star hotel. Though I may not take a shower just in case I get the one with the bad electrical problem in the shower.[/FONT]
  12. ddavidv

    ddavidv Member

    The complaints about the 'service' at the Strasburg train shop are not uncommon. It's a shame, because they do have a pretty nice selection.
    If you are a newb to the hobby and live in the area, I highly recommend you travel the 30 or so minutes to Rules Model Trains. 2nd generation of hobbyists run the place, and they will help you get started. Ticketed prices are pretty much close to Walthers catalog, but large purchases or pre-orders can often receive a discount. Bill was very competitive in matching internet prices on my Intermountain F units when they came out.
    Best of all, they are on the 2nd floor of the local beer distributor, so you can make 2 important purchases at one stop. :-D
  13. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    ddavidv: I may try them when we go back. They're near Brickerville; my wife's ancestors came from there 200 years ago.
  14. fwpoppy

    fwpoppy New Member

    I was in Strasburg April 13th and there were two GG-1's sitting outside at the rear of the main building. Thet were behind a fenced off area and I was only able to get to within about 100 feet.One was in the old maroon and gold Pennsy paint. I will have to dig out my camera and see what I have of the GG-1's. The outer 'restoration area' was not fully open but I had no problem getting someone to escort me when I asked.

    As far as the hobby shop, I had much the same experience. Next time try Tommy Gilberts in Gettysburg. It is just the opposite. They will talk trains or anything else with you and are some of the most helpful people I have ever dealt with in any retail establishment.

  15. hooknlad

    hooknlad Member

    John thanx for the heads up and the lead with Gettysburg. While in Strasburg I did not get to the museum until Sunday ( the day of the great down pour that crippled the East coast ), therefore i missed the outdoor part of the museum and missed my favorite GG1's.. To me the GG1 is just an awesome piece of electrical equipment.... I will visit Tommy Gilberts soon... Thanx again...

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