How one man's love of trains transported a neighborhood
On the lower level of Bruce & Adrienne Feldman's Haverford Reserve home is a remarkable sight: a miniature Boston, complete with Fenway Park, Beacon Hill, Newbury Street – even the subway. Bruce grew up in Boston, just like his love of trains, and his home railroad, which fills nearly their entire lower level, dazzles with nearly two miles of track and 2,000 train cars.
Remarkably, Bruce designed, engineered and painted the entire display himself: "I’ve always had this desire to paint, and I enjoy creating and building things.” Adrienne adds, "When Bruce retired, his artistic side came out.”
Almost every year since they built their custom Carriage Home, Bruce and Adrienne welcome their Haverford Reserve neighbors during the holidays to enjoy the display. Most of the neighbors have heard about the trains before they arrive. Maybe they saw the story on Action News. More likely, a neighbor told them they absolutely “had to see the trains.”
"When I was a kid," says Adrienne, "my parents took me to the Grand Court at Wanamaker's - now Macy’s - to see the spectacular Christmas Show. The trains have the same effect on our neighbors.” When six or eight trains are all chugging along, the air is laced with streams of smoke and a virtual symphony of steam engine sounds.
“Lots of us remember having Lionel trains as kids," says Bruce. “I'm constantly amazed how quickly they bring back fond memories."
Bruce and Adrienne get a lot of satisfaction from sharing the trains with their neighbors, friends and even area school children. “It’s such a happy way to bring people together, says Adrienne. "Can you guess what triggers the biggest reaction?,” Bruce adds with a smile. "The smoke from the trains.”
To be awed by the sheer size of Haverford Reserve’s celebrated train set and savor some of Bruce's remarkable hand-painted details, click here to view the photo gallery.