Posts Tagged ‘Steamtown National Historic Site’

Rare Mileage Excursion set on R&N

March 2, 2018

An excursion to benefit steam locomotive restoration will run on May 5 on the Reading & Northern Railroad.

The Onieda Flyer will cover sections of the former Reading and Lehigh Valley railroads in a 96-mile round trip, traversing some segments that have not hosted a passenger train in more than 50 years.

The excursion train will leave R&N’s Port Clinton headquarters at 10 a.m. and return at 7 p.m.

Trip sponsor Lackawanna & Wyoming Valley Chapter of the National Railroad Historical Society said proceeds will benefit restoration of Boston & Main 4-6-2 No. 3713 in partnership with Steamtown National Historic Site.

The chapter wants to raise $225,000 this year for the restoration efforts. No. 3713 is set to return to service at Steamtown in 2020, after 62 years on static display.

Among the branches to be covered during the excursion are the former Reading Company Little Schuylkill and Catawissa branches, and parts of the Lehigh Valley’s New Boston and Hazleton branches via Onieda and Morea junctions.

Motive power will be two of R&N’s recently acquired MP15 diesel switcher locomotives, painted in a Reading-inspired green and yellow scheme. Three photo runbys are planned.

Tickets are $99 for adults and $69 for kids 12 and under. A Subway boxed lunch can be ordered as an option.

More information and tickets are available at http://www.laurellinesspecials.org, project3713.com or contact excursion co-chairperson Norm Barrett at 570-575-5320 or email him at nyowfan@msn.com

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Steamtown to be Honored on Stamp

December 20, 2017

A group supporting the National Park Service will issue a stamp that honors Steamtown National Historic Site.

The museum in Scranton, Pennsylvania, will be prominently featured on a commemorative stamp issued next year as part of Eastern National’s annual Passport to Your National Parks Regional Stamp Set.

It is the first time in Steamtown’s 32 years of existence that it has been featured on the stamp, which Steamtown Superintendent Debbie Conway said will help bring more attention to the park.

“It brings more awareness,” Conway said. “There are a lot of people who definitely have their national park passport wherever they go.”

The stamp features a photo of a locomotive on a turntable that was made by Steamtown volunteer James Benetzky.

To purchase the stamp, visit www.eparks.com.

Steamtown Stops Charging Admission

November 17, 2017

Steamtown National Historic site has ceased charging admission.

The park in Scranton, Pennsylvania, has scrapped its fee of $7 a day for those 16 and older after a National Park Service study concluded that visitation would increase and costs would diminish by not collecting admissions.

The museum will continue to charge $5 for the short train rides that it offers and longer excursions to destinations outside the park will continue to have a fee.

Fees may also be charged for special exhibits and the annual Railfest. Park Superintendent Debbie Conway said the fees for Railfest have not yet been determined.

Steamtown Announces Fall Foliage Trips

September 19, 2017

Steamtown National Historic Site has announced its slate of eight fall foliage excursions that will operate next month. Ticket sales begin on Sept. 24. The schedule includes the following trips:

Moscow, Pennsylvania, excursions on Oct. 14 and 21 will depart Steamtown at 12:30 p.m. and return about 3 p.m. Light refreshments served on board will benefit the park’s Boston & Maine No. 3713 project.

An East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, trip to the borough’s fall foliage festival on Oct. 7 will depart Steamtown at 9:30 a.m. and return about 4:30 p.m.

A Tobyhanna Station, Pennsylvania,  excursion on Oct. 7 will depart Steamtown at 11 a.m. and return about 3 p.m.

A Carbondale, Pennsylvania,  special excursion with Baldwin 0-6-0 No. 26 on Columbus Day (Monday, Oct. 9) will travel through the Lackawanna Valley. Train leaves Steamtown at 10 a.m. and returns at 4 p.m.

A Delaware Water Gap Station trip on Oct. 15 departs Steamtown at 9 a.m. and returns about 5 p.m.

A Cresco, Pennsylvania,  trip on Oct. 22 will feature an excursion through the Pocono Mountains. The train departs Steamtown at 11:30 a.m. and returns about 4 p.m.

A Gouldsboro, Pennsylvania,  Halloween-themed trip on Sunday, Oct. 29, leaves Steamtown at 11 a.m. and returns about 3 p.m.

The 30-minute Scranton Limited excursions will operate inside park boundaries on Fridays and Saturdays through Nov 11.

Visiting Railfest Weekend at Steamtown

September 5, 2017

Former Baldwin Eddystone Plant switcher No. 26 ran around pulling short excursions through the yard.

A big event here in the New Jersey/Eastern Pennsylvania area is the annual Railfest at Steamtown National Historic Site over Labor Day Weekend. It is a two-day event, featuring displays, train rides and a night photo session. This day was sunny on Saturday morning but turned to overcast skies as the day went on. Here are some highlights.

Photographs by Jack Norris

Original Lackawanna No. 426, a model SC switcher built by EMC, which predates the change to EMD.

The New York, Ontario & Western entered the diesel age in 1941 with the purchase of five GE 44 tonners. This is one of the original five.

Grand Trunk Western 4-8-2 No. 6039.

Nickel Plate Road No. 759 needs no introduction.

Lackawanna painted F-3 #663 pulled caboose rides through the yard.

Reading F-7s 902 & 903 are not owned by Steamtown but reside their when not pulling excursions for the two groups that own them.

Reading T-1 No. 2124 is one of the four T-1s that the Reading preserved for their Iron Horse Rambles. The 2124 was basically a reserve engine for the 2100, 2101 & 2102.

Steamtown Sets Railfest Activities

August 9, 2017

Steamtown National Historic Site will be holding a Railfest weekend on Sept. 2 and 3 featuring the theme of the transition from steam to diesel.

Diesel-powered excursions to Moscow, Pennsylvania, will run both days, departing Steamtown at 12:30 p.m. and returning around 3 p.m.

Other excursions will include shorter train rides on the Scranton Limited and an expanded schedule at the Lackawanna County’s Electric City Trolley Museum.

There will also be hand car rides, blacksmithing demonstrations, locomotive shop tours, presentations from railroad publishers, preservation groups, and entertainment by local musicians and other performers.

The Erie-Lackawanna Dining Car Preservation Society will an evening dinner and entertainment activity during after-hours events on Friday and Saturday.

A 7,500-pound 1925-built Whitcomb gasoline-powered locomotive will be on display. It is on loan from the National Museum of Industrial History in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

The Railfest activities and programs are included in the park’s $7 daily entrance fee.

Steamtown Sets Summer, Fall Excursions

July 21, 2017

Steamtown National Historic Site has announced its slate of summer and autumn excursions, the first of which will run on July 22.

Among the destinations are the Pennsylvania cities of Moscow, Tobyhanna, Gouldsboro, Cresco, East Stroudsburg, and Delaware Water Gap Township.

The calendar also included Railfest 2017 on Sept. 2 and 3 with train rides to Moscow on both days.

All excursions include light snacks and refreshments and some excursions will feature local music and entertainment options.

The park will continue to offer shorter Scranton Limited  train rides that operate daily except Sunday.

Those depart four times a day from the museum’s main area for a trip through the rail yards of the former Delaware, Lackawanna & Western Railroad in Scranton.

Shorter excursions are typically pulled by Baldwin Locomotive Works 0-6-0 No. 26, while longer excursions are assigned Delaware, Lackawanna & Western cab units.

The entrance fee to Steamtown is $7 for adults. Children ages 15 and under when accompanied by an adult receive free admission.

Teen Steamtown Volunteer Wins NPS Award

May 4, 2017

A teen volunteer at Steamtown National Historical Site has won the George and Helen Hartzog Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service from the National Park Service.

Aiden Schafer was honored for his work, which included 800 hours of service during the past two years.

Steamtown officials described Schafer as a “go-to guy” for many at the park even though he is still in high school.

Acting Northeast Regional Director Joshua Laird said that last year 63,900 volunteers contributed 1,470,300 hours of service in the region and that without them, many projects would not be completed.

“When a volunteer-in-parks  agree to share their talents, skills and interests with the National Park Service, they are paying the organization one of the highest compliments possible by offering a most valued possession — their time,” Laird said in a news release.

Free Steamtown Admission on April 22-23

April 20, 2017

The National Park Service is offering free admission to Steamtown National Historic Site on April 22 and 23 to celebrate the 101st anniversary of the national park system.

The Park Service said free admission also will be offered on Sept. 30 for National Public Lands Day and Nov. 11-12 for the Veteran’s Day weekend.

Steamtown plans to have Baldwin Locomotive Works 0-6-0 No. 26 fired up for the April event and offer short train rides around the former Delaware, Lackawanna & Western rail yard for $5. Locomotive No. 26 returned to regular service in 2016.

Steamtown Drew 99,000 Plus in 2016

January 13, 2017

Steamtown National Historical Site reported this week that it drew more than 99,000 visitors in 2016.

Park serviceThat was a 10 percent increase over the 89,500 who came in 2015. The park drew 84,200 in 2014.

Steamtown Superintendent Deborah Conway said visitation last year might have topped 100,000 but for poor weather in December. Steamtown last drew more than 100,000 visitors in 2012.

Park officials attributed the uptick in visitors in 2016 to the return of steam locomotive powered excursions and the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service.

Through 2000, Steamtown regularly attracted more than 150,000 visitors, hosting 211,000 in 1995. The low point was 2006 when visitation bottomed out at 61,000.

By comparison, the California State Railroad museum draws nearly 500,000 a year and the B&O Railroad Museum has annual attendance around 200,000.

Steamtown’s Baldwin Locomotive Works 0-6-0 No. 26 pulled short trips around Scranton, Pennsylvania, during 2016.