Our Annual Open House

Our 2021 Annual Open House will be held on Saturday, December 4th, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and Sunday, December 5th, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Come on over to 323 W. Forest Ave., Neenah, WI, and check it out.

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Hours
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Our Open House Is Today!

Admission is free.

Donations are graciously accepted and immensely appreciated.

Masks are optional for those fully vaccinated.

Some new features have been added since our last open house in 2019.

We hosted an open house on 2 October 2021 for attendees of the National Model Railroad Association (NMRA) Winnebagoland Division Fall Meet. Here Wally, our president, explains some features of our model railroad to our guests. Photograph by Tom Bruss.

At least once per year we like to invite the public into our depot, so that everyone can see what the Milwaukee & Northern Railway Historical Society (MNRHS), also known as the Neenah-Menasha Model Railroad Club (NMMRRC), is all about.

Visit our historic 1882 depot.

See how enjoyable the hobby of model railroading can be.

Discover some of the history of our prototype railroad.

Consider joining our Society.

This newspaper article announced the open house which we had hosted on 8 December 1982. This was the first time that the general public was invited to come in and discover what we are about. Previous open houses were hosted exclusively for members of other model railroad clubs. Larry Easton, right, was a co-founder of the MNRHS.

In April of 2020 Wally, our current president, reminisced about that 1982 open house: “Yeah, I remember that. It was the first time the club opened the doors to the general public. Larry had researched and found that our building was reaching its 100th birthday and we decided to celebrate that with the open house. It was on a regular meeting night and I didn’t know about all the publicity that we had received on it. I drove down to the club with my toolbox in the truck, figuring I could work on whatever project and maybe there would be a few extra folks visiting to see what we were all about. I had to park about a block and a half away, left my tool box in the truck, and when I reached the depot, there was a line of people waiting to get inside! The place was packed. This was before we had built the part of the pike that now fills the middle of the baggage room, so that area was filled with attendees as well.”

Wally added: “We have had many open house events since then, usually on a weekend over two full days, which spreads the crowd out so that we are more able to greet and talk with the people. Over the years we have seen many old friends returning to check on our progress as well as lots of new faces seeing our railroad for the first time. One of my favorite parts is witnessing the wonder in a child’s eyes when he or she sees our miniature world. Or when an older kid exclaims “Gramma, Grampa, the trains run RIGHT through the BATHROOM!!”

Wally operates a train on our model railroad circa 4 November 1989. This may have been a publicity photograph for our open house that year. Photograph courtesy of the Neenah Historical Society.