Posts Tagged ‘Summerail’

Summerail Canceled for 2021

April 26, 2021

Summerail 2021 has been canceled due to the linging effects of the CVOID-19 pandemic.

The committee overseeing the event held in August at the Palace Theater in Marion said the event was canceled due to “the many variables and unknown conditions that the COVID-19 virus has beset upon us.”

In an announcement sent via email to past attendees and participants, the committee said those conditions include a potential lack of vendors for the railroadiana show and several presenters canceling their participation due to family and job obligations.

As a result, the committee said, there was a danger that moving ahead with the event could result in a fiscal failure that would endanger its ability to hold future events.

The email indicated that Summerail operates on a tight budget and barely breaks even.

Summerail 2020 also was canceled due to the pandemic. The event was last held in August 2019.

Summerail to be Held Aug. 10 in Marion

August 2, 2019

Summerail 2019 has been set for Aug. 10 at the Palace Theater in Marion, Ohio.

It will be the fourth time that the annual railroad themed multimedia exhibition that began in 1995 in Cincinnati has been held in Marion.

Tickets are $25 and will be available at the door. A railroadiana show only ticket is available for $5.

The Palace Theater offers expansive theater-style seating and is within walking distance of Marion Union Station, one of Ohio’s top train-watching spots.

The depot and AC Tower will be open during the weekend of Summerail.

Ten presenters are in this year’s lineup including two from Northeast Ohio, Jerry Jordak and Ron Spiga.

The programs will begin at 1 p.m. and extend through 10 p.m. with a dinner break between 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. A railroadiana show will be held in the theater building between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

The presenters and their program titles are:

Bryan Bechtold (The Kyle Railroad and the Great Plains), Bob Edmonson (Missouri Scrapbook), Jerry Jordak (25 Years of Railfanning the Keystone State), Frank Keller (North To Alaska, 2008-2018), Mike McBride (Riding the C&NW Carousel), Garland McKee (KCS Speedway), Vic Neves (Forty Years and Counting), Mike Schafer (Illinois Terminal), Ron Spiga (Assignment: Heidelberg, West Germany 1970), and Dave Stanley (Oregon’s Lumbering Ghosts)

On Friday, Aug. 9, four programs will be presented at Marion Union Station. There is no admission charge for those shows, which began about 7 p.m.

The presentations include Rick Acton, “Midwest and West from the 90s; Bill Kalkman, British Columbia & Alberta; Kirk Reynolds, The Best Ten Bucks I ever spent; and Steve Salamon, Monongahela Railway.

Summerail 2018 Presentation Sked Set

March 31, 2018

The presentation schedule for Summerail 2018 to be held Aug. 11 in Marion has been set.

Thirteen multimedia programs featuring music and images will be presented at the Palace Theater in downtown Marion.

Ticket are $25 and include admission to the train show and sale. A train show only ticket is available for $5 at the door.

The first program session will start at 1 p.m. A dinner break will be held between 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. when the second session will begin. The programs will end at approximately 10 p.m.

The train show will be open between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

White River Productions will host a catered dinner at Marion Union Station featuring Skyline chili. Tickets for that dinner are $12 and available for purchase on the day of the event.

It will be the third time that Summerail has been held in Marion. It was held in Cincinnati until 2016 when it moved to Marion due to construction at Cincinnati Union Terminal closing the auditorium where the event is held.

Although the move to Marion was intended to be temporary, the show organizers decided to permanently relocate there because of the attractiveness of the venue, which has ample seating and can accommodate more visitors than did the theater used in Cincinnati.

The list of presenters and the names of their programs are:

  • Richard Baldwin and Don Toon – Richard Baldwin’s Greatest Hits
  • Charles Dischinger – What A Beautiful Sound
  • Chris Haines – Railfanning As A Family
  • Mike Harting – Great Lakes Iron Ore Roads
  • Mark Llanuza – Erie Lackawanna’s West End
  • Jeff and Andrew Nelson – Wisconsin Central
  • George Pitarys – A Taste Of Maine
  • Mike Raia – 50 Years of Railfanning
  • Pete Ruesch – Pete’s Potpourri: A Year In Video
  • John Ryan and Paul Swanson – The Land Of Enchantment
  • Brian Schmidt – Time Of My Life
  • Brian Sellers – Cincinnati’s Shortlines & Streamliners
  • Pat Sweeney – SoCal Surfliner

Summerail and Train Watching in Marion

August 14, 2017

Summerail returned to Marion last Saturday and there are indications that it will be back there again in 2018.

Master of ceremonies Ron Flanary announced toward the end of the program that the 2018 event will be held on Aug. 11 at the Palace Theater in Marion, where it was also held in 2016.

Traditionally, Summerail has been held in Cincinnati, but was moved to Marion last year due to construction at Cincinnati Union Terminal.

The move to Marion was expected to be for just two years, but Marion does offer some advantages over Cincinnati, primarily the use of an auditorium with expansive seating.

Past sessions of Summerail have sold out weeks before the event, but the Palace Theater has enough seating to make possible walk-up sales of tickets on the day of the event.

The 22nd edition of Summerail offered 10 multi-media programs with images set to music. Each program was about 45 minutes in duration and featured digital images.

A few programs had introductory commentary and videos embedded amid the usual progression of still images.

None of the programs were presented by Northeast Ohio residents and scenes of railroading from Northeast Ohio were scarce.

I spotted several Akron Railroad Club members in Marion during the day including Peter Bowler, Ron McElrath, Mark Demaline, Jim Mastrommateo, David Mangold, Richard Antibus and Tom Fritsch.

Some of them spent their day watching trains at Marion Union Station rather than viewing the Summerail programs.

The original Norfolk Southern heritage unit led an eastbound NS coal train through Marion in late afternoon, but I missed it because its passage occurred during the last set of afternoon programs.

Some Summerail regulars have a practice of dining at a Skyline Chili restaurant in Cincinnati during the dinner break.

Although Skyline has several franchises outside of southwestern Ohio, there are none in Marion.

Railfan & Railroad magazine arranged a catered Skyline chili dinner at Marion Union Station.

Tickets were $12 with a portion of the proceeds going to the station association.

The dinner was catered by a Skyline franchise in Westerville, a Columbus suburb.

A railfan sits at the operator’s desk in AC Tower as CSX train Q007 passes by.

BNSF motive power leads an eastbound grain train on the Columbus Subdivision of CSX.

Some Summerail attendees spent part of their dinner break watching trains. An eastbound NS manifest freight passes the photo line.

CSX westbound stack train Q007 had a pair of Kansas City Southern “Belles” in the motive power consist.

As westbound Q007 passes AC Tower, NS train 234 waits in the background.

The rear of NS train 234 passes the Erie Lackawanna caboose, which sits at the site of a former Erie Railroad division headquarters building.



NS 961, a light power move from Columbus to Bellevue, passes AC Tower.

Master of ceremonies Ron Flanary introduces a program.

Dishing out the Skyline Chili.

Railfan & Railroad editor Steve Barry dives into a cheese coney in the waiting room of Marion Union Station.