Posts Tagged ‘National Park Scenic’

CVSR Extends Cancellations Through November

October 19, 2022

The Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad has cancelled all National Park Scenic, Fall Flyer, Bike Aboard, Hale Farm, Explorer Program, and Family Fun Loop services through Nov. 6.

The Cleveland Dinner and Event train will continue operating on Friday nights through Oct. 28. A Veteran’s Day special planned for Nov. 10 will operate between Rockside Road station in Independence and the Fitzwater shops and yard.

The CVSR announcement also said that at this time it still expects its North Pole Adventure excursions to begin operating as scheduled on Nov. 11.

The cancellations began last weekend after the National Park Service closed a portion of the tracks used by the CVSR due to erosion of the bank of the Cuyahoga River.

That issue first surfaced last spring where the tracks run close to the river north of the Boston Mill station near the Columbia Run picnic area.

That led to the cancellation of service to Peninsula and Akron between early March and July 16. During that period, the CVSR was limited to using eight miles of track from Rockside Road southward.

The Park Service, which owns the track used by the CVSR, has hired an engineering firm to oversee stabilization work in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, including along the railroad.

Erosion Issues Prompt Cancellation of CVSR Fall Flyer and National Park Scenic Trips for Awhile

October 14, 2022

Erosion issues continue to plaque the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad, prompting it to cancel all National Park Scenic and Fall Flyer excursions for this weekend.

In a notice posted on the railroad’s website and its Facebook page, the cancellations were attributed to the National Park Service closing portions of the tracks used by CVSR trains “due to significant erosion from the Cuyahoga River.”

The Cleveland Dinner and Event Train will run as scheduled tonight (Oct. 14). Also still operating this weekend is a special CVSR members-only event.

The CVSR notice said the Park Service regularly inspects the railroad tracks, particularly near the Cuyahoga River.

The statement indicated that the erosion areas are the same as those that last spring shut down the line from about the Columbia Run picnic area north of Boston Mill to Akron.

Park Service officials have hired an engineering firm that is reviewing how to address the area where erosion has been a problem.

CVSR’s statement suggested that train cancellations are might continue beyond this weekend.

“The modifications to operations will remain in place while NPS and CVSR wait for additional information and explore options for returning to normal,” the statement said.

No North Pole Adventure trains, which will begin running Nov. 11, have been cancelled but CVSR said some trips may be modified.

It is the second consecutive weekend in which the CVSR has cancelled trips.

The weekend of Oct. 7-9 saw all Fall Flyer excursions cancelled and some National Park Scenic trips were scrapped on Oct. 7.

Those cancellations were attributed to maintenance issues with CVSR’s motive power fleet.

Earlier this week, the CVSR posted another notice on its Facebook page acknowledging, “the CVSR is a preservation railroad that provides a traditional rail experience through the Cuyahoga Valley National Park; many of our cars were built in the 1940s and 1950s.”

The loss of excursions in October will be a major blow to a tourist railroad that suffered significant revenue losses during the COVID-19 pandemic when dozens of trips were cancelled.

October is one of the railroad’s busiest months as passengers flock to CVSR trains to see fall foliage.

Locomotive Issues Prompt CVSR Cancellations

October 5, 2022

Locomotive issues have prompted the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad to cancel some trips of the National Park Scenic on Friday and all trips of the Fall Flyer on Saturday and Sunday.

A notice on the railroad’s website attributed the cancellations to “unforeseen circumstances regarding our locomotive fleet.”

The affected National Park Scenic departures on Friday depart Peninsula northbound at 11:45 a.m., southbound from Rockside Road station in Independence at 1 p.m., and southbound from Peninsula at 1:45 p.m.

The website notice said passengers who have purchased tickets for the affected cancelled trips will be automatically refunded to their original credit card, which generally takes three to five business days to process.

Tickets are still available for other scheduled National Park Scenic departures, either online or at the station in the hour prior to each departure.

Comments made on the CVSR Facebook page indicated that the locomotives having mechanical issues are AlcoC420 No. 365 and FPA-4 No. 6780, which formerly operated as Baltimore & Ohio No. 800.

A poster offered a screen shot of an email he received from CVSR staff saying a replacement locomotive is expected to arrive next week.

The email didn’t provide any details, but in recent years CVSR has leased locomotive power from Cleveland-based Horizon Rail.

CVSR to Run First 2022 Train Tonight

January 21, 2022

The Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad will field its first train of the 2022 operating season tonight with a two-hour dinner and theme train leaving Rockside Road station in Independence at 6:30 p.m.

Night Ride tickets are $16 per passenger while theme experience Murder Mystery: Fitness can be Murder tickets are $60 per person.

Dinner train tickets range between $120 and $105 depending on seating class. The higher priced tickets are for dome level seating.

The dinner train offers a four-course meal with a choice of two main courses. There is also complimentary bar service for dinner train patrons.

The menu for Jan. 21, Jan. 28 and Feb. 4, includes a first course of drunken goat cheese accompanied with stewed red grapes and honeycomb candy; a second course of a Burrata salad of fennel, red onion, focaccia crumble, capers and Italian dressing; and a main course of veal short ribs served with mashed rutabaga, roasted brussels sprouts, honey glazed carrots and herb jus or chicken roulades served with mashed rutabaga, roasted brussels sprouts, honey glazed carrots and herb jus.

Dessert is a pear and walnut crumble with white wine vanilla ice cream.

The National Park Scenic will get underway for the season on Saturday with tickets ranging from $11 to $36 depending on seating class.

The Scenic will board and discharge passengers at Rockside Road, Peninsula and Akron North Side station.  It will operate on Saturdays and Sundays through April with Friday trips added in May.

Trains depart Rockside Road station at 9 a.m. and noon, and depart Akron at 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

Times at Peninsula are 9:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. southbound, and 11:05 a.m. and 2:05 p.m. northbound.

CVSR to Serve Howe Meadow Market on Sept. 25

September 17, 2021

Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad’s National Park Scenic will be making a stop on Sept. 25 at Howe Meadow so that passengers can shop at the Countryside Food and Farms market.

Passengers must board at Rockside Road in Independence and the train will depart at 9 a.m.

Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children.  The farmer’s market features more than 50 local farmers, food entrepreneurs and artists.

Passengers will have a one and half-hour stay at the market and depart at 11:30 a.m. to return to Rockside Road station at 12:30 p.m.

The National Park Scenic on that date will not operate between Howe Meadow and Akron. The second loop of the Scenic will depart Rockside Road station for Akron at 1 p.m.

CVSR 2020 Season to Begin Jan. 24

January 12, 2020

The Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad is kicking off its 2020 season with a drawing to win a prize package.

The package is a gift basket with merchandise, shirts, tasting glasses and tickets.

Tickets must be booked online for a chance to win the prize.

The 2020 season begins on Jan. 24 with a 7 p.m. departure from Rockside Road station in Independence.

The National Park Scenic returns to service on Jan. 25 and will operate twice a day on Saturdays and Sundays through April.

When the Scenic makes its inaugural run it also will begin making regular station stops at the relocated Boston Mill station adjacent to the new visitor’s center of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

Tickets range from $15 to $35 per person, depending on seating. All passengers ages 3 and older must have a ticket.

Children ages 2 and younger do not need a ticket but must sit on a parent’s or guardian’s lap throughout the trip.

The Jan. 25 run of the Scenic will also mark the resumption of breakfast aboard the train.

Unlike in 2019, breakfast aboard the train passengers will board at Rockside Road rather than in Peninsula.

They will receive a three-course meal catered by Creekside restaurant of Brecksville.

Tickets for the breakfast service cost $40 for adults and $27 for children (ages 3 to 12).

Coffee, tea and water are served as part of the meal and other beverages can be purchased in the concession car.

The January menu will feature a fruit kebob; Mediterranean frittata with spinach, feta cheese, tomatoes and oregano; side dishes of home fries and turkey sausage; and a coconut cream tart.

Menus change monthly and the entrée for February will be cinnamon French toast casserole. March will feature a corned beef hash frittata while April will have pancakes with lemon blueberry compote.

CVSR 2020 Season to Start Jan. 24

November 23, 2019

The Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad will resume operating for the 2020 season on Jan. 24 with the departure of its Friday night dinner train from Rockside Road station in Independence.

The CVSR’s National Park Scenic will resume operations on Jan. 25, operating on Saturday and Sunday through April.

The last day of operation for the Scenic in 2019 will be Nov. 30.

During December the only CVSR operations will be the nightly Polar Express trips, which run through Dec. 21 except on Thanksgiving Day.

The railroad also announced that it is now selling tickets for its dinner trains, which also operate out of Akron on select Saturday evenings. The next Akron dinner train will depart on Feb. 15.

Dinner train tickets range from $100 to $125 per person depending on the seating class chosen. The highest price tickets involve dome section seating.

The menus for the dinner trains change twice a month. Menus have been posted for trains operating through April 25.

The four course menu for the late January dinner trains has a first curse of cured salmon herb cream cheese, arugula, pickled red onion, fried caper, and crackers; a second course of roasted squash saladmachego, candied walnuts, red onion, baby kale, apple vinaigrette; a third course of chicken cacciatoretomato ragout, herb basmati, baby bell pepper and herb salad; and a fourth course of chocolate pot de crèmeorange, mint, candied almond

A vegan option is available for an entrée upon request at least one week prior to departure date.

CVSR Launches Edu-Trainment Car

October 26, 2019

The Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad has launched its Edu-trainment car, which is designed to appeal to families with children.

The car, which is operating on the National Park Scenic through Sunday (Oct. 27), was created from the former Sharon Inn, which was originally built for the Pennsylvania Railroad.

CVSR officials told the Akron Beacon Journal that in recent years the Sharon Inn had been cannibalized for parts.

The car was subsequently rebuilt after being stripped down to its bare metal shell.

Funding for the rebuild came from the CVSR’s ongoing capital campaign.

The Edu-trainment car ran for the first time on Oct. 16. Once it completes its last run for 2019, it will be sidelined until returning in January 2020 when the Scenic resumes operations.

Bobby Dinkins, CVSR’s vice president of development and marketing, described the car as a “traveling kids museum on a train.”

He said the railroad created the car because some families found it a challenge to keep young children entertained during a three-hour trip. The car offers a place for families to retreat to during CVSR excursions.

The interior was designed by Karen Katz, who has done design work for the Children’s Museum of Cleveland.

It includes benches for parents to sit and watch their children play or take in the educational displays, including a map of the railroad’s route with magnets shaped like train engines to move about, train tables and small train replicas.

The carpet resembles a railroad track with pieces of hardwood floor mixed in to resemble the rails and blue circle lights in the ceiling representing the sky.

Exhibits were placed by windows to encourage children to view the nature of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park and let in natural light.

“We wanted to connect the inside with the nature outside,” Katz said.

Other features include child-friendly bathrooms, a private baby feeding room and padded cubbies for children to read train-related books from a small library as well as look out the window.

Bike Aboard to End for Season After This Weekend

October 25, 2019

The bike aboard service provided by the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park will operate for the final time on Sunday, Oct. 27 for the 2019 season.

The Hale Farm Explorer will also operate for the final time this year on Oct. 27.

That will also mark the end of five day a week operation of the National Park Scenic between Independence (Rockside Road Station) and Akron.

During the month of November the Scenic will operate only on Saturdays and Sundays.

Trains will depart Rockside Road at 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. southbound and depart Akron Northside Station at 10:50 a.m. and 3 p.m. northbound.

Arrival times in Akron at 10:30 a.m. and 2:40 p.m. while arrival times at Rockside Road will be 12:30 p.m. and 4:35 p.m.

The final day of operation for the Scenic for 2019 will be Saturday, Nov. 30.

The CVSR will operate Veteran’s Day runs of the Scenic on Nov. 11 for military veterans, activity military members, first responders and up to three of their family members for a complimentary train ride.

The veterans train will depart Akron at 10 a.m. and Rockside Road at 10:15 a.m.

The trips will last two hours. Members of the public are urged to turn out to wave flags as the trains pass through Peninsula.

Train Time at Rockside Road

February 10, 2018

The National Park Scenic departs from Rockside Road station in Independence.

The Rockside Road station in Independence is the northernmost outpost on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad.

National Park Service ownership of the tracks ends shortly north of the Rockside Road bridge.

In theory, Rockside Road is the closest station to my home. But I seldom photograph the CVSR there because it is not much of a photogenic place and I can’t as easily set out to chase trains from there as I can from other locations on the CVSR.

Last September, though, I ventured to Rockside Road to board a steam excursion train pulled by Nickel Plate Road 2-8-4 No. 765. Before the steam train left, the first National Park Scenic of the day arrived in the station on a deadhead move, boarded passengers and left for Akron.

The Scenic ferry move from Fitzwater Yard arrives at Rockside Road.

Boarding bikers and their bicycles as a car passes overhead on Rockside Road.

Passengers look for their car to board.

A CVSR trainman walks to his post.