Though it's taken 16 years to construct, "Weaversburg" has been a lifetime in the making for Gary Weaver.
"There's a building right there that I did when I was 12 years old," said Weaver, pointing to a piece of the model railroad display that nearly spills from his garage.
This will be the 13th year Weaver opens his garage up to the community. As always, "Weaversburg" aims to bring joy to children and food to the FISH pantry.
"That's what it's all about," Weaver said.
Last year, Weaver collected 45 bags of groceries for FISH. He asks that visitors bring food donations to the 2016 Weaversburg Model Railroad Christmas Display on Dec. 10.
Ever since building his first model train platform with his dad in 1962, Weaver has collected. After retiring from the Air Force in 2001, Weaver started what would become the world of Weaversburg.
The HO scale model railroad includes 15 running trains, more than 3,000 lights, countless buildings, figures and surprises — if you look closely enough. From Hogwarts to Elvis to Batman, there's something everyone will recognize.
The open house will last from 3-7 p.m. on Dec. 10 at 135 Elizabeth Harrison Lane. Weaver requests at least one nonperishable food donation per family. The FISH website suggests the following items: apple sauce, peanut butter, jelly, cereal, spaghetti sauce, canned fruit, canned meat, canned tuna/salmon, pork and beans, canned soup, rice, spaghetti, powdered milk or canned vegetables.
Bridges can be reached by phone at 757-345-2342.