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“I was told, "kids who don't listen don't belong in this world."”

Hartmann Model Railroad & Toy Museum
Ranked #1 of 2 things to do in Intervale
Attraction details
Reviewed December 2, 2013

This place was beyond terrible and the staff were obnoxious and RUDE! We were in and out in 10 minutes and I'm more upset with the fact the kids (9, 6, and 5 yrs old) were subjected to cruel treatment.

There were five of us and immediately after saying the routine "hello" the kids were mildly scolded with, "don't touch anything." I let it pass, but gave the kids a friendly reminder to try and keep their hands to themselves as we were going to enter a so called "museum". A sign then was pointed out to the kids that was in numerical order and read, (1) You Look (2) You Buy, (3) Then Play. My gut instincts started to kick in that we should leave, but the 9 year old is really into trains and I didn't want him to miss out on what I thought would be a fun activity.

We paid the ridiculous entrance fee and went to the first train model. The train didn't even complete one lap before one of the employees approached one of the kids (6 year old) telling her to step back away from the train model so she won't be tempted to touch anything. I can tell she was scared. I told the gentlemen that if he had any concerns he is to approach me before speaking to one of the children. He became slightly defensive and told me he was just following policy. I scooted the kids along to another train model. Now, I really don't like this place, but we already paid the entrance fee and the behavior of the employees didn't seem to phase the kids much. This would be the second time I let something bothersome slide.

The 9 year old then finds a train model he thought was relatively cool and called over his younger siblings to show them. The girls who were observing the train model one table over ran over when all of a sudden the train stopped in its track. The red light indicating that the train was in motion stopped. They must have lost power, I thought. I go over to the employee to let him know when an old man comes from a back room and began scolding me that we were not following policy. What I previously thought was the loss of power by fault of an electrical error or failure to pay a bill, I realized was not. The old man had turned off the power!!! Already agitated from what had occurred shortly before this encounter, I turned to the kids and told them we were leaving. The older man told me that he wanted to share his trains, but we have to follow his policies. I told him and the employee who had been on us like a hawk that this place was not kid-friendly and they have no business dealing with families with children. I told him we didn't want any part of his trains and proceeded to leave, when he then all of a sudden told me, "kids who don't listen don't belong in this world." He lost his damn mind when he said that to me in front of the kids, and to keep it short, the city girl came out in me. I was mindful that the kids were present, but it was important for me to let this man know that he crossed a line.

It wasn't long before the kids stopped asking questions about what happened on the car ride home, but it pained me that some of those questions included, "why didn't they like us?", "what did we do wrong?", and "why did he say we don't belong?".

This place at best, is for adult train aficionados that don't mind moldy smells with awful lighting. Whatever this place is labeled appropriate for, for sure it is not safe for kids!!!!

12  Thank Yadira R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"rainy day"
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"only complaint"
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"new hampshire"
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"model railroad"
in 9 reviews
"toy museum"
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"press a button"
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"toys"
in 9 reviews
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in 18 reviews
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Reviewed December 2, 2013

This place was beyond terrible and the staff were obnoxious and RUDE! We were in and out in 10 minutes and I'm more upset with the fact the kids (9, 6, and 5 yrs old) were subjected to cruel treatment.

There were five of us and immediately after saying the routine "hello" the kids were mildly scolded with, "don't touch anything." I let it pass, but gave the kids a friendly reminder to try and keep their hands to themselves as we were going to enter a so called "museum". A sign then was pointed out to the kids that was in numerical order and read, (1) You Look (2) You Buy, (3) Then Play. My gut instincts started to kick in that we should leave, but the 9 year old is really into trains and I didn't want him to miss out on what I thought would be a fun activity.

We paid the ridiculous entrance fee and went to the first train model. The train didn't even complete one lap before one of the employees approached one of the kids (6 year old) telling her to step back away from the train model so she won't be tempted to touch anything. I can tell she was scared. I told the gentlemen that if he had any concerns he is to approach me before speaking to one of the children. He became slightly defensive and told me he was just following policy. I scooted the kids along to another train model. Now, I really don't like this place, but we already paid the entrance fee and the behavior of the employees didn't seem to phase the kids much. This would be the second time I let something bothersome slide.

The 9 year old then finds a train model he thought was relatively cool and called over his younger siblings to show them. The girls who were observing the train model one table over ran over when all of a sudden the train stopped in its track. The red light indicating that the train was in motion stopped. They must have lost power, I thought. I go over to the employee to let him know when an old man comes from a back room and began scolding me that we were not following policy. What I previously thought was the loss of power by fault of an electrical error or failure to pay a bill, I realized was not. The old man had turned off the power!!! Already agitated from what had occurred shortly before this encounter, I turned to the kids and told them we were leaving. The older man told me that he wanted to share his trains, but we have to follow his policies. I told him and the employee who had been on us like a hawk that this place was not kid-friendly and they have no business dealing with families with children. I told him we didn't want any part of his trains and proceeded to leave, when he then all of a sudden told me, "kids who don't listen don't belong in this world." He lost his damn mind when he said that to me in front of the kids, and to keep it short, the city girl came out in me. I was mindful that the kids were present, but it was important for me to let this man know that he crossed a line.

It wasn't long before the kids stopped asking questions about what happened on the car ride home, but it pained me that some of those questions included, "why didn't they like us?", "what did we do wrong?", and "why did he say we don't belong?".

This place at best, is for adult train aficionados that don't mind moldy smells with awful lighting. Whatever this place is labeled appropriate for, for sure it is not safe for kids!!!!

9  Thank Yadira R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 15, 2013

There are reviews for this in 2 different places on Trip Advisor, so I will post this in both places. We were happy with our visit to the Hartmann Model Railroad, so I was surprised to see some negative reviews.

My husband is into model railroading and is constructing his own display in our basement. He likes to look at displays to get "ideas". The admission was $5 senior rate for each of us, and we thought it was worth it to spend an hour looking at all the layouts and the displays of old toys and models.

We spent some time talking to the owner, who is from Switzerland, and found him to be friendly and helpful. The displays were interesting and my husband got some ideas for his display.

I agree with other reviewers that the "running" trains were a little disappointing since the only thing running was the engine without a train in back of it, and not all levels of multi track displays were used. However, we thought the displays were interesting and worth a close look to see all the details and work that went into it. There was a lot of variety. Also there were shelves upon shelves of old rail road cars and other toys on display.

In reading some negative reviews, they are mostly from people who brought children. We are retired seniors so didn't experience any of the issues stated. However, I can see how parents may not want to visit a place where they were stressed out about the kids touching things. Also, we didn't notice the rules about riding the train; i.e. having to purchase something. If that were simplified and featured, perhaps more people with kids would feel welcome.

I would recommend the model railroad museum mostly for adults who were into model railroading or for those who had older children that would be interested in the details of the layouts.

1  Thank dsarah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 15, 2013

There are reviews for this in 2 different places on Trip Advisor, so I will post this in both places. We were happy with our visit to the Hartmann Model Railroad, so I was surprised to see some negative reviews.

My husband is into model railroading and is constructing his own display in our basement. He likes to look at displays to get "ideas". The admission was $5 senior rate for each of us, and we thought it was worth it to spend an hour looking at all the layouts and the displays of old toys and models.

We spent some time talking to the owner, who is from Switzerland, and found him to be friendly and helpful. The displays were interesting and my husband got some ideas for his display.

I agree with other reviewers that the "running" trains were a little disappointing since the only thing running was the engine without a train in back of it, and not all levels of multi track displays were used. However, we thought the displays were interesting and worth a close look to see all the details and work that went into it. There was a lot of variety. Also there were shelves upon shelves of old rail road cars and other toys on display.

In reading some negative reviews, they are mostly from people who brought children. We are retired seniors so didn't experience any of the issues stated. However, I can see how parents may not want to visit a place where they were stressed out about the kids touching things. Also, we didn't notice the rules about riding the train; i.e. having to purchase something. If that were simplified and featured, perhaps more people with kids would feel welcome.

I would recommend the model railroad museum mostly for adults who were into model railroading or for those who had older children that would be interested in the details of the layouts.

1  Thank dsarah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
See more reviews
Reviewed August 2, 2013

They had a TON of model train exhibits. Perfect for your 2-6 year-old or if you REALLY love model trains. Only $6 to get in and lots to see. It was quiet with only a few families there but it is a nice place to visit if you have little ones.

Thank Matt G in CT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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