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Model train diner along rte 91?

Driving home from VT to NY today and looking for an alternative to Friendly's which my kids insist on. A few months ago we stopped at a diner along the way which had a model train motif with model trains running thru and around the diner which fascinated my kids. Food was decent. If anybody can remember the name, please let me know as it will save me from Friendly's tonite!!

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  1. Could it be the Steaming Tender in Palmer? I believe it's off Mass Pike(90) at rt 20.

    1 Reply
    1. re: trufflehound

      Steaming Tender is in an actual train station.

    2. Might you be thinking of the bluebonnet diner in Northampton (on rt.5) about 1/2 mile from exit 20 (I think) off rt 91

      1. It's definitely the Bluebonnet on Rt 5/10 in Northampton. The Broasted Chicken is delicious!

        3 Replies
        1. re: Fargo

          What exactly IS the broasted chicken? Do you get a whole chicken?

          1. re: corinnerose

            As I recall Broasted Chicken is pressure-fried chicken. That is it is fried in a sealed environment, that is very quick and requires less cooking oil than a normal fryolator.

            But please correct me if I am wrong on these details.

            1. re: VivreManger

              Oh yes, you are correct. Turns out it's some trademarked machine process thing. Oh well.


        2. I looked at the web site for the Bluebonnet Diner in Northampton Ma. and there is no mention of any trains running inside the diner, Its an old fashioned dining car type Restaurant , There doesn't appear to be any trains running inside, Am enclosing the web site.(http://www.bluebonnetdiner.net/histor...) I guess you could call them.. Good luck with your search. There is a place in Maine outside of Augusta that has a train that runs around the dinning room at the ceiling level .Other than that I don't know of one. Sounds like a interesting motif to see. If any one else knows of a place ,please post it on Chowhound Thanks

          4 Replies
          1. re: Earle

            In fact, in the Gallery section of the web site, there are at least 2 photos clearly showing the trains and the track that runs around the diner, near the ceiling.

            1. re: Earle

              I've eaten there for over 20 years and my niece and nephew love the trains, so I'm pretty confident it's still there.

              1. re: Fargo

                I'm sorry about that I only looked at the rounded celling of the original diner and I didn't see them there, apparently they are in a separate section. Thanks for the update.

              2. re: Earle

                "There is a place in Maine outside of Augusta that has a train that runs around the dinning room at the ceiling level "
                ........and where is that ? Please name the place.

              3. in case anyone reading this thread is looking for similar but in other areas, Rosy Tomorrow's in Danbury (off rte 84 exit 2) also has a train running around the dining room up near the ceiling. When the hungry kids were little they LOVED to go there to watch it. I can't say the food is outstanding, but it certainly beats Friendly's!!!

                1. It is DEFINITELY the Bluebonnet Diner in Northampton, Ma.. Off I-91 on King Street.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: bouls

                    I doubt you were as far east as Putnam, CT, but there's a hot dog joint in that town that has trains running all over the place.

                  2. Bluebonnet Diner 324 King Street Northampton, MA

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: u4greco

                      But the trains were removed in a recent renovation. Evidently this made a lot of people unhappy, and the owner said in the Gazette the other day that he will be restoring them. In the meantime, no trains.
                      OTOH, this is a really old thread.

                    2. Sorry because this isn't on topic, but you just made me VERY nostalgic for one of my favorite childhood places - Hamburger Choo Choo in Huntington, LI, NY. If you sat at the counter, they would deliver your meal on a large scale model train that encircled the restaurant. Sadly it burnt down several years ago...


                      3 Replies
                      1. re: SteveSCT

                        Maybe you'd enjoy Pizzaworks in Old Saybrook for old times' sake? :)

                        1. re: kattyeyes

                          Similar, though the food doesn't seem to arrive by model train. May be worth a stop if I'm in the area. Thanks.

                        2. re: SteveSCT

                          Yes! The hamburgers were good, but they also had real onion rings - not the breaded kind, but the crispy battered kind. I think they made it there.

                          BTW - it looks like the old Sun Ming restaurant has finally given up the ghost. They had an off-the-menu menu with some really interesting items for the more (back then in the 1970s) adventurous diners. Huntington was still pretty much white bread & even the Wimpy's Burgers on 110 folded quickly - too bad, good burgers.