|Railway Preservation News
|R&GVRRM Marks 80th Anniversary With Steam Engine Visit
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|Author:||Otto Vondrak [ Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:56 pm ]|
|Post subject:||R&GVRRM Marks 80th Anniversary With Steam Engine Visit|
Railroad Museum Celebrates 80 Years with Steam Engine Visit
Eighty years ago this month, ten railroad enthusiasts met at the old New York Central station in downtown Rochester to found the organization that would grow to become the largest collection of historic trains in New York State. Now known as the Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum, the highlight of their 80th anniversary will be the first visit of steam locomotive to the Rochester area since 1954.
The museum found its permanent home in 1971 when volunteers purchased the old Industry depot in the town of Rush from the Erie Lackawanna Railroad. The museum’s collection has since expanded to include more than 40 freight and passenger cars, cabooses, diesel locomotives, and two steam engines. Although the steam engines are years away from operation, the dreams of steam are about to come true. “Having an operating steam engine has always been a goal of our museum,” said president Mike Dow, “With Viscose 6 visiting this summer, it finally becomes a reality.” On August 19-20 and 26-27, the museum will host Viscose Co. No. 6, a vintage switch engine that once operated for the American Viscose Co. in Roanoke, Virginia. Purchased by a private individual in 2004, Viscose No. 6 was restored to operation in 2007 and appears at festivals around the northeast. Not only is this the first steam train to operate at the museum, but also the first to operate in the Rochester area in more sixty years!
A number of special events are scheduled to help mark the museum’s 80th anniversary, beginning with enjoyable Easter Bunny Train Rides on April 15. The following month, local craft breweries partner with the museum to present “Rails and Ales” on May 20. Visitors will see the progress to restore Rochester Subway Car 60 during Subway Heritage Weekend on June 17-18. The museum will host local artists presenting a craft show along with train rides on July 15-16. In August the museum will host their very first steam engine, Viscose No. 6. A vintage diesel donated by the Livonia, Avon & Lakeville Railroad will be the centerpiece of the museum’s annual Diesel Days celebration on September 16-17. Popular Pumpkin Patch Train Rides will return for the last three weekends October. The museum’s annual Fall Foliage Express will be operated with the cooperation of the LA&L Railroad during the first week of October. The train ride season will conclude in December with special runs to the North Pole to visit Santa Claus.
The museum enjoyed record-breaking attendance last year, and wants to continue that momentum. “With five major railroad companies serving Rochester at one time, our founders realized the important part the industry played on the development of our community,” Dow says. “Eighty years later, our volunteers are carrying on their original mission and growing. We intend to be here another 80 years, and then some.”
For more information about the museum, visit http://www.rgvrrm.org, and for train schedules and tickets, visit http://www.RochesterTrainRides.com.
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