By: Mark Gabriel/staff photo
THE NEWLY COMPLETED “town” of Lakey Flats comes complete with railroad tracks as part of a complex model railroad display under construction by the Black Cat Club.
Miniature railroad cars wind around hills, through tunnels and between tiny towns in a large HO model railroad display currently under construction by the Yadkin Valley Chapter of the National Railroad Historical Society, more commonly known as the Black Cat Railroad Club.
The club is working on the final phase of the display, as they finish a model railroad station complete with turntable and a latticed network of switching tracks.
“We’re all railroad nuts,” said club member Bob Fink about his fellow members’ passion for the project, currently under way at the club’s headquarters at the former Wilkes Art Gallery on Elizabeth Street in North Wilkesboro.
“Some of us are just plain nuts,” said member Jim Davenport, laughing. “But that’s OK.”
The model train display is built entirely in HO scale, the standard for model railroad trains. It comes with miniature buildings, cars and people in model towns called Plexico Junction, which has a power plant; Lakey Flats, which has its own fast food chicken restaurant; and Union Station, with its own central railway station.
Along the way are model versions of motor vehicle crashes, logs tumbling off a railroad car, an apple orchard with bee gums nearby, and a moonshine still hidden behind some trees.