From LONG ISLAND – by Ann Parry (ann-parry.com)
November 30, 2016
Where can you see a three-ring circus, NYC subway line, and real prop used in a mob hit scene on The Sopranos? At the Train Masters of Babylon Model Train Club HQ in Long Island!
Farmingdale, New York, USA. November 26, 2016. An Amtrak model train speeds through a tunnel at TMB Model Train Club’s Open House. (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)
Last Saturday, during the long Thanksgiving Weekend, I spent a couple of hours that sped by all too quickly at TMB’s Open House, which was free and open to the public, as all their Open Houses are.
Farmingdale, NY, USA. Nov. 26, 2016. TMB club member BAKE TURNER, of Melville, holds a blue Electromotive Division EMD model train engine at the Train Masters of Babylon Model Train Club’s Open House. (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)
BAKE TURNER, a TMB Model Train Club Board Member, told me how the club – which is a Lionel Ambassador for 2016-17 – moved from Lindenhurst to their Farmingdale location four years ago, and they’re still expanding the elaborate O-Scale layouts, including developing one vertically up a wall!
Farmingdale, NY, USA. Nov. 26, 2016. Tiny tightrope walker model figure, about two inches tall, is in circus scene display at Train Masters of Babylon TMB Model Train Club’s Open House. (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)
Young children perched on parents’ shoulders; adults bent down to inspect the subway line; and lots of arms, short and long, pointed to trains whizzing around the 19 scale miles of track winding through fantastically detailed landscapes, towns, tall cityscapes….
Farmingdale, New York, USA. November 26, 2016. At TMB Model Train Club’s Open House, visitors look at actual train display seen in ‘The Blue Comet’ episode of HBO’s ‘The Sopranos.’ (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)
And then there’s the club’s star attraction: the actual train layout featured in “The Blue Comet” episode of The Sopranos HBO television series. It wasn’t until shortly after my visit I realized the layout was complete with “blood stains” from Bobby Bacala’s execution, so I want to return to the scene of that crime during a future Open House.
UPDATE: January 2019
In the Jan. 2019 issue of Model Rail, the UK model train magazine, editor Richard Foster writes that The Blue Comet episode of HBO’s The Sopranos is his favorite TV episode featuring a model train.
Along with info about the episode and TMB Model Train Club, Foster’s “Backscene” article (page 146) includes one of my news photos of the actual TV prop on display during TMB’s Open House.
The Model Rail January 2019 digital back issue is currently available for purchase at the PocketMags site (which I have NO relationship with).
TMB Open House: GALLERY
Train Masters of Babylon: TMB site | 2016-17 Lionel Ambassadors
Feb. 28, 2018 blog post: “TMB Model Train Club: Big Room with Big (and Small) Views“