The Yonkers Model Railroad Club offered Blythedale the opportunity to have the Club put on a train show for the patients. The club is operating a two track concentric loop of trains in HO scale (HO is 1/8th of an inch to the prototype foot) at the Hospital for a week. The layout is approximately sixteen feet long and six foot wide, and is constructed by assembling "modules” four feet in length and two-foot wide into a full oval layout. The modules have track, scenery, and structures. The members of the club operate trains they have built and assembled themselves.
"It is such a treat, not only for our patients, but for their families, our staff and volunteers, to have this extraordinary display in our Hospital," said Blythedale Director of Community Relations Lena Cavanna. "We are so grateful to the Yonkers Model Railroad Club for bringing such an extensive display, along with their vast expertise, to Blythedale."
The model trains represent in miniature the steam, diesel, and electrical train operations that existed in the Eastern United States in the second half of the 20th Century. The show for the children includes the sounds of steam locomotives, the bells and whistles of diesel locomotives, and the colors and designs associated with freight cars and passenger trains of the great railroads of America’s past, including the New York Central System, the New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad and the Pennsylvania Railroad.
The Yonkers Model Railroad Club has been in existence since 1939 and has maintained a permanent train layout in the Administration Building at Tibbetts Brook Park in Yonkers, New York since 1969. The club room at Tibbetts Brook Park is currently being remodeled and will re-open in early 2013. The membership of the club is made up of train enthusiasts who, when not building or operating trains, are active and retired engineers, information technicians, mechanics, doctors and lawyers. The display at Blythedale includes trains built by the members and run on a layout constructed over the course of forty years by various present and former members of the club.
As a part of the Yonkers Model Railroad Club’s activities, it uses its modular, portable model train layout to conduct shows in the New York metropolitan area. In the past, the club has run shows in White Plains, Greenburgh, and in Yonkers.
About Blythedale Children’s Hospital
As New York’s only freestanding, specialty children’s hospital, Blythedale Children’s Hospital is dedicated to improving the health status and quality of life of children with complex medical illnesses and disabling conditions through superb multi-disciplinary patient care, teaching, research, and advocacy programs. Blythedale’s board-certified physicians, nurses, clinical staff (social workers, respiratory therapists, clinical pharmacists, Child Life specialists, etc.) and New York State’s largest hospital-based pediatric therapy department (PT, OT and Speech) work together to provide intensive and innovative multi-disciplinary clinical and therapeutic care to help children achieve their medical and rehabilitative goals for independent living, and return to their communities. Blythedale is also the only Hospital in New York State with its own on-site public school district, the Mount Pleasant Blythedale Union Free School District. For more information about Blythedale Children’s Hospital, visit http://www.blythedale.org