Monday, July 21, 2014

Scenes from Day Out With Thomas 2014

The Day Out With Thomas Thrill of the Ride Tour was another successful event at the Northwest Railway Museum! Nearly 16,000 guests enjoyed a visit with Thomas the Tank Engine, and a multitude of activities.  This 13th annual visit of that Very Useful Engine was skillfully staffed by many of the Museum's 130 active volunteers who contributed hundreds of hours doing everything from checking tickets to running the locomotive to guiding visitors to applying tattoos to emptying garbage.  And the Santa Cruz Portland Cement 2 steam locomotive even made a cameo appearance to let everyone know about Snoqualmie Railroad Days on August 15 - 17.  Check out these scenes from this year's fabulous event -

Coach 218 was at the head of the
train during Day Out With Thomas.
Sir Topham Hatt greeeted
visitors throughout the
Motor car rides were a highlight for
many children and their parents.

Eric Ode presented a variety of
material throughout the event.

Live steam locomotive models operated
on a layout during the event.
Photo opportunities with
Thomas the Tank Engine
were available from JED
Punch and Judy was performed by
Clay Martin throughout the event.

Great food from Snoqualmie Falls
Candy Factory and Sahara's Pizza
was enjoyed by many throughout the

Families could take their own photo
with Thomas too!
There were lots of learning
opportunities too.

US Plywood 11 was a featured exhibit.
Hi Thomas!
Santa Cruz Portland
Cement 2 was a special
guest who will return on
Railroad Days, Aug 15 -
The splendid newly rehabilitated
interior in coach 218, a 1912-built
wood car that ran between Vancouver
and Spokane.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Steam locomotive arrives!

Locomotive owner Stathi Pappas
poses with SCPC 2 at North Bend.
The long anticipated arrival of Santa Cruz Portland Cement steam locomotive 2 has been realized!  SCPC 2 arrived in North Bend, WA on July 17 aboard a nine-axle Sherman Bros Heavy Haul trailer following a two-day journey from Santa Cruz, CA.
Safely off the truck!  A few
moments later, the 2 began its
slow four mile journey to

The locomotive was carefully unloaded and slowly moved to Snoqualmie.  There, it will be on exhibit for the next three Day Out With Thomas event days where it can be viewed adjacent to locomotive 201. And many thanks to the seven volunteers that helped unload car 2!

The 2 was pushed to Snoqualmie
by 4024 and was soon placed next
to Thomas the Tank Engine.
The 2 will receive some minor work at the Conservation and Restoration Center in the coming weeks.  It will make its operating debut in the Snoqualmie Valley during Snoqualmie Railroad Days 2014.  During this annual community festival hosted by the Northwest Railway Museum, it will operate August 15, 16, & 17 in commemoration of the 125th anniversary of the first passenger train excursion to Snoqualmie Falls.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Thomas the Tank Engine returns!

Thomas the Tank Engine approaches the Snoqualmie Depot on July 11, 2014.

A live steam model negotiates a curve at Day Out With Thomas 2014 at the Northwest Railway Museum
Train tables are popular with children of all ages.Brian Vogan and His Good Buddies perform at Day Out With Thomas 2014.Thomas the Tank Engine poses for photos with children of all ages.Thomas the Tank Engine has returned to the Northwest Railway Museum!  More than 15,000 children with their adults are expected for this year's extraveganga, which got underway today (July 11, 2014).  
Brian Vogan and his Good Buddies, Nancy Stewart and Eric Ode are making beautiful music live at the event, and a variety of activities are thrilling children of all ages.  Live steam models, a puppet show, train tables, model trains, motor car rides and more are operating during the event, which runs July 11 - 13 and 18 - 20. You even have an opportunity to get your picture taken with Thomas the Tank Engine!  And new this year is "talking Thomas," which allows Thomas the Thank Engine to give your little engineers a few words of wisdom.  Tickets include everything except merchandise and food, and can be purchased at the gate for $24 each, or in advance for $23 via TicketWeb.  All aboard for fun!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Give BIG results

GiveBIG!The Seattle Foundation’s GiveBIG 2014 event was a big success for the Northwest Railway Museum! The Museum recently received the final report from The Seattle Foundation and more than $14,000 was raised in support of the steam program, the upcoming visit of the Santa Cruz Portland Cement 2 steam locomotive in August, and towards additional work on chapel car 5 Messenger of Peace. The visiting steam locomotive will arrive in late July and is scheduled to pull the train during Snoqualmie Railroad Days, August 15, 16, and 17. Thank you to everyone who supported GiveBIG 2014!

Chiggen travels on a highway truck in CA.

Friday, July 4, 2014

125 years of excursions

President Snook 
addressed the crowd 
before the train
July 4, 1889 marked the inaugural passenger train excursion from Seattle to Snoqualmie Falls along the lines of the Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railway Company. Hosted by the ME Church Society, tickets cost $2 return, which was a veritable fortune for people living in Washington Territory during that era. 125 years later, on July 4, 2014, the Northwest Railway Museum commemorated the anniversary with speeches, a ribbon cutting, and two special trains to Snoqualmie Falls.  

Reenactors from Fort Nisqually made the anniversary trains
come alive and joined Mayor Matt Larson and President
Dennis Snook for the ribbon cutting.
157 tickets were issued for the anniversary trains, and many of those visitors joined the dedication speech and ribbon cutting that began on July 4 at noon.  Marketing Director Peggy Barchi welcomed everyone and Museum President Dennis Snook gave an inspirational talk that helped set the mood for the anniversary trains. City of Snoqualmie Mayor Matt Larson praised the Museum's preservation efforts and highlighted the importance of the railway in local history.  Historic reenactors dressed in Victorian-era clothing attended too and added an element of authenticity to the Century-old excursion train.

Vintage clothing added to the event.
Reeneactors pose for photos while riding on coach 218.
Coach 218, which is nearing completion in an extensive
rehabilitation effort made a brief appearance too.
The pinnacle of Snoqualmie Falls.  In 1889 there was no lodge,
power station, or dam.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Steam appointment

The Northwest Railway Museum is pleased to announce the appointment of Efstathios "Stathi" Pappas as the Curator of Collections.  Mr. Pappas brings a wealth of education and experience in the railway museum field and is best known for his skills in the rehabilitation, maintenance and operation of steam locomotives. He comes equipped with a Masters degree in Industrial Archaeology, and has performed major work on a variety of locomotives.

Stathi has an unusual vehicle in his personal collection too: an operational steam locomotive.  His 0-4-0 Porter is the former Santa Cruz Portland Cement 2 that will be visiting Snoqualmie Railroad Days in August.  The locomotive is dubbed the "Chiggen" for its former role as a chicken restaurant mascot near Stockton, California.  The 2 returned to steam last winter and has been touring in Northern California.

Stathi is responsible for the large object collection, including the coaches and locomotives that operate on the interpretive railway. Beginning this fall, he will be managing the Museum's steam program that will rehabilitate and operate a steam locomotive on a recurring basis as part of the interpretive railway program.  In the coming weeks he will be familiarizing himself with the Museum, and developing a detailed work plan.

Welcome aboard, Stathi!