It details the "rise and fall" of the Shops and its rebirth as the NCTM.
At multiple times throughout the year they have special events, and this review focuses on the Lester J. Brown Memorial Truck Show and the coinciding Train Day, particularly the 2018 event.
The truck show itself is somewhat small, with maybe 20 to 30 rigs attending, but with the other attractions on the grounds, it's an absolute must for truck and train fans.
Here's a few of the attending rigs.
A GMC 350, which I had not seen one of before or since.
A very classy and classic looking 1969 Peterbilt 352.
A cool 1952 Ford "Big Job" with the exhaustingly over used "Tow Mater" moniker.
Another wrecker, this one a Mack B-61.
A true rarity in this area (or any area, really) a Hendrickson. This is the only one I've ever seen "face-to-face".
And another Mack B-61, this one a very nicely restored dump truck.
Moving on to actual Museum displays now.
An Old Dominion Ford.
And an Old Dominion White.
And an International cabover.
There were of course many other exhibits, but these were clear of people and in decent positions to photograph.
Moving on to the train exhibits now.
An original Norfolk Southern diesel, a 1955 Baldwin AS-416.
And looking very at home in the roundhouse within which it would have been based and maintained, Southern 542, a 1903 Baldwin 2-8-0.
An Atlantic Coast Line "Whopper Hopper".
A Southern "Big John" hopper.
And the absolute highlight of my visit, and arguably the most beautiful steam locomotive in the world, built by the Norfolk and Western in Roanoke, Virginia in 1950, the one and only Norfolk and Western 611!
That's it for the NCTM portion of the review, so let's move on to the general area.
First, an excellent train photography spot: 35.72283569727263, -80.39027875238729
I unfortunately couldn't spend as long as I would have liked here, but here's the 2 successful shots I got.
RNCX 1893 the "City of Burlington", an EMD F59PH owned by the North Carolina Department of Transportation.
That's it for the photography aspect of the review, let's move on to the restaurant portion.
I wasn't in the area long, and it's not a particularly tourist heavy spot, so we only found one restaurant, but honestly, it was the only one we needed it was so great!
Hendrix Barbecue at 615 Salisbury Ave, Spencer, NC 28159