This museum is part of a huge complex of little museums. We were confused at first as to what was going on...I don't think the signage or brochure info prepares you for this very well. Within "The Depot", there is a playhouse, art gallery, MN Veterans Museum, MN Forestry Museum, an Immigrant Waiting room, a couple other small things, a gift shop and the Railroad Museums. The Railroad Museum is downstairs. There are little store fronts set up with a good sized variety of antique goods in the windows...this sparked some conversation/education with my kids. A couple of the stores are open...the candy shop and the movie theatre, maybe the general store also, as a gift shop. The trains also start in this same room. Phenomenal. Several of the cars/engines can be climbed on or walked through. I wished there was a little more explaination as to the technological advances that made some things obsolete, making way of the new and improved. Regardless it was a great display! My kids loved it and we all learned something. There were more cars on the tracks outside...most of those could not be gone through, but it didn't really matter, since there was still plenty to see. One car was set up like a mini museum with a short film playing, and a tribute to James J Hill. Worth the timely read...very interesting!!! Over-all I'd highly recommend this for any age. We spent about 90 minutes with the trains. I would suggest leaving some time for the other displays within the depot also. The Immigrant Waiting Room was so interesting. Another short film was playing there and I regret not being able to view the entire thing...very interesting! The Vet tribute & Foresty Museum were great also. Each display was small, probably about 20 minutes worth of info (lots of pictures & reading...no hands-on for the littles), but so worth the time!
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