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The North Pole Meets Dickens' London: Tower Bridge Serves as Connector in Wind Crest Holiday Train Display

December 7, 2011

Resident group creates, designs and operates one-of-a-kind, dual-track exhibit

HIGHLANDS RANCH, CO---It's December, 1850, and Londoners are joyfully preparing for the holidays, shopping and caroling.
When what to their wondering eyes appears?
No less than Santa's workshop at the North Pole...and they're now connected by the Tower Bridge!!!
That's exactly the scene at the holiday village train display, currently being showcased at Wind Crest retirement community in Highlands Ranch.
The sixteen foot, double-track display was designed and created by twelve members of the campus Model Railroad Club.  They hand-carved and painted the winter-time scenery of the North Pole and City of London, constructed the Tower Bridge span, carefully set the display buildings and performed the electrical work.
Another eighteen residents assist with the operation of the train display during the holiday season.
Jim Murphy is a resident of Wind Crest and a member of the Model Railroad Club, a shared hobby enjoyed with his wife, Virginia.  They are not only collectors but also have traveled the country to attend conventions of the National Model Railroad Association.
"Every year, the members of the Model Railroad Club select a different theme requiring a new skill set to design," described Mr. Murphy.  "It's a talented group, and we enjoy the challenge of creating a beautiful display."
"This year's scene really takes us back to a simpler time that celebrates the season," noted Mr. Murphy.  "It captivates the imagination of our residents and the many visitors to Wind Crest."
Wind Crest is located at 3235 Mill Vista Road in Highlands Ranch.
View photos of the entire display and a close-up of a village scene.  Photos are courtesy of Pete Ritchie, community resources manager.
About Wind Crest: Wind Crest, managed and developed by Erickson Living, is a retirement community that provides worry-free living for America's seniors-the country's fastest growing population segment.  Erickson Living's financial value and predictable monthly service fees provide residents across the country financial peace of mind.  Comprehensive health and wellness services, integrated into our continuum of care, lead to demonstrated resident benefits.  A robust complement of resident programs and facilities promote an engaged, fulfilling lifestyle that is reflected in resident satisfaction levels that exceed the industry average.  For more information, please visit