Model trains passion began with surprise Christmas present for Ozark man

Jim Rudd has only collected model trains for the past 15 years, but the Ozark man is the first to say what started as an interest when he received his first train as a surprise Christmas present from his wife has today grown into a passion.

With some 54 sets of electric trains running on a labyrinth of tracks spiraling throughout the 3,200-square foot ‘Train Depot’ he custom built behind his Ozark home two years ago, Rudd stands with his trademark unlit cigar in hand surveying the scene that he directs.

He points to a child-sized table against one wall with a single train on a 6-foot oblong track. “It all started with that little train over there. That was the first train,” he said. “And the first track.”

Now 2-year old grandson Watson is the director of that station, Rudd said. “When he comes to visit, the

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