The world’s only train-themed entertainment center came from what its owner calls “a dumb idea.” Don Oeters, owner and founder of EnterTRAINment Junction, couldn’t imagine anyone paying for space to house a public train display. “I said, ‘It would be fun, but no one’s dumb enough to buy a building,’” remembers Oeters.

According to Oeters, the idea came from a discussion amongst the Greater Cincinnati Garden Railway Society, who wanted to create a train display for the public. Originally, the plan was for a display the size of a living room, but Oeters envisioned something larger. The result is a train layout half the size of a football field.

“I wanted something to do, so I took the simple idea of building a train layout [and thought about] how to make it so it’s not just a train display, but it’s also something for the family,” says Oeters.

The family elements of EnterTRAINment Junction include a kid’s play area, café and coffee shop, train museum, gift shop and an A-Maze-N Funhouse. According to Bill Mefford, public relations manager, the funhouse is largely popular with visitors. A combination of several different carnival styles, the funhouse brings entertainment to any age group. “We say we have two world-class attractions under one roof,” he says. “You can enter five different tents with five different types of carnivals.”

However, Mefford says the train layout itself is a main attraction of EnterTRAINment Junction. “Overall, my favorite part is the train layout, because it’s incredible. It’s over two miles of track and 90 locomotives and 1,500 train cars,” he describes. “This is not miniature, this is G-scale, which is the largest scale you can get. Each car is the size of a loaf of bread.”

The train junction also offers special holiday exhibits. “There’s always been a connection between railroads and Christmastime. That meant coming home for the holidays, family coming back from war, so [there’s] this great connection between trains and the Christmas holiday,” says Mefford.

At Christmastime, the junction displays a “Journey to the North Pole” where visitors travel through various Christmas scenes. Guests walk through a winter wonderland, reindeer stable, elf workshop and Mrs. Claus’ kitchen on their way to Santa’s study. “It’s really one of the premier Christmas adventures. Instead of seeing Santa, you’re actually traveling through an experience to get to Santa,” says Oeters.

Mefford says EnterTRAINment Junction’s diverse approach to trains makes it appealing to any age group. “The train theme is multi-generational,” he says. “A lot of products and entertainment centers are not multi-generational, but here it is in big numbers.”