All the media coverage from National Train Day

There's no doubt that National Train Day has picked up steam since its inception in 2008.  Part of that has to do with the great work Amtrak has done to increase the scale of its touchstone celebrations in major cities, and part of it has to do with the grassroots organizing efforts of passengers all across America.

Regardless, there's no greater indication of its runway success than the booming media coverage National Train Day receives.  NARP has gathered just a sample of the many stories that appeared about the scores of celebrations across the U.S.:

Federal Railroad Administrator Joseph Szabo had a guest appearance on U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood’s Fastlane blog to commemorate National Train Day: 

We don't usually post a blog on the weekend, but today is National Train Day, commemorating the May 1869 driving of the golden spike that completed the nation's first transcontinental railroad. To mark this special occasion, let's hear what Federal Railroad Administrator Joseph Szabo said at a National Train Day celebration earlier today in Chicago.


USA Today takes a look at some of America’s great train stations in “10 great places to celebrate National Train Day”:

Rail fans across the country will celebrate National Train Day with exhibits and activities at train depots across the country. But stations are worth visiting year round says Ed Breslin , a co-author of America's Great Railroad Stations (Viking Studio, $40), which features photos by Roger Strauss III. "They were the front porch to every town. They showed American craftsmanship and feel for architecture." He shares some favorites with Larry Bleiberg for USA TODAY.

 

Passengers in Lincoln, New Hampshire gathered at the Hobo Railroad in recognition of National Train Day, with transportation leaders speaking to the importance of passenger trains.  The Union Leader’s Sara Young-Knox covered the festivities in Granite State officials celebrate Railroad Day”

It's been 143 years since the ceremonial driving of the last spike for the Transcontinental Railroad took place at Promontory Summit, Utah. It was an event that meant economic opportunities in formerly isolated towns in the middle and western parts of the country, and opened up new markets for the goods made in factories back East.


WICU’s Ashley Doerzbacher was on location in Waldameer Park, Pennsylvania to cover National Train Day celebrations at the Erie Zoo:

It may not be summer just yet, but with the sunshine and warm weather its feeling more like. And Saturday, it felt even more like everyone's favorite season with the opening of the community's favorite place.

  "We love Waldameer, we do," said Operations Manager of Bob FM Joe Lang. "The nice thing is they keep investing in park, keep making things bigger and better."


The Daily American’s Philip Petrunak was on hand to see the turnout in Rockwood, Pennsylvania’s, providing coverage in “National Train Day roars into Rockwood”:

National Train Day rolled into Rockwood Saturday and was welcomed by a crowd of thousands. Visitors celebrated the town's railroading heritage with great food and unique events while basking in the warm sunshine.

The Rockwood Area Merchants Association hosted the third annual event. 


The Daily Citizen’s Mark Millican took a look at National Train Day in Dalton, Georgia, proclaiming ‘Every day is Train Day in Dalton’:

Gerald O’Mahoney said he spent a year actually living in “The Crescent City” — a Presidential Train Car moved from a railroad spur off South Hamilton Street to the Dalton Freight Depot last year — after he and business partner Cecil Davis bought the car and converted it into a unique office space in 1972.

 

Michigan passengers were out in force, with celebration’s across the state supported by the Michigan Association of Railroad Passengers.  The Associated Press reported on the events in “Festivities planned in 8 cities to honor Train Day”

EAST LANSING, Mich. (WTW) — Trains stations across Lower Michigan will host celebrations on National Train Day with refreshments, displays, proclamations and discussions on passenger train travel in the state.


CBS covered one of the bigger events in its story Chicago’s Union Station Helps Thousands Celebrate National Train Day”:

Thousands of people jammed Chicago Union Station Saturday — but not because they needed to go somewhere.

It was the fifth annual National Train Day. Many, such as 12-year-old Kevin Mack, were self-described “railfans” or “train geeks.”


The Chieftain’s Ryan Severance reported on a special run of the Southwest Chief between Trinidad and New Mexico in honor of National Train Day:

Amtrak’s Southwest Chief embarks today on a one-day journey from Trinidad to New Mexico today as part of National Train Day. 

Gov. John Hickenlooper issued a proclamation recently marking the event and noting increasing Amtrak ridership in Colorado, according to a press release.


International reporters were on hand in Los Angeles to see the unveiling of a sculpture crafted by a Chinese artist to honor the work of Chinese immigrants who helped build the transcontinental railroad:

For the first time since the first transcontinental railroad in the United States was created 143 years ago, a sculpture was unveiled at the Union Station in Los Angeles Saturday to pay tribute to the Chinese railroad builders. 

The sculpture, created by award-winning Chinese artist Yuan Xikun, depicts three generations of Chinese railroad builders: the father is standing with an iron hoes on shoulder and staring at the horizons afar, the grandfather is crouching besides and touching an unfinished crosstie and the grandson is leaning on grandfather and listening to him for a story about railroad building.


Even Hawaii got into the act reports Dennis Fujimoto of the Garden Island, in “Grove Farm takes ride in time on National Train Day”:

LIHU‘E — Kaua‘i joined the major cities of New York, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and Chicago in the observation of Saturday as National Train Day.

...

Scott Johnson, the engineer at the Grove Farm Museum, arranged for free train rides aboard historic steam locomotives to commemorate the occasion.

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I just love that he was able to register to vote as "Spider-Man". Maybe we DO need those voter ID laws after all. He's a masked menace is what he is!
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