Sorry for the late posting on Opening Weekend, but here it is.
On May 14/15 the NRM had it’s opening weekend under rather poor weather conditions, experiencing wind, rain, sun, and even snow! However, the weather didn’t keep the visitors away, with 2 very busy and steady days.
Our guests were treated to a fairly new Niagara Railway Museum. Inside there were many changes, as we’ve been reporting over the last few months, including the major lighting upgrade inside the office area. Our 3rd boxcar was converted to a second display car, and also had a permanent store added to 1 end. We are working on increasing our stock, but for now, it’s decent as it is.
Thanks to Dave Torbett for building us 2 new cabinets for the display car.
Wayne M got a little painting done on the middle door during the open house.
We had w new display cases made by David Torbett, and they were installed in the new display car in time for the weekend. We have a bit of tweaking to do on them before the next open house, but they were definitely a great addition to the car. They are used to house the Van Alstine and Mills collections.
The new display on the Van Alstine twins on the CN.
Tools of the trade for the display about Fred Mills, ex CNR Carman.
The new store is a great addition as well, as it now gives us a semi permanent area to sell Museum goods throughout the season, without having to set it up and take it down every time. We will be adding new items, such as NRM t-shirts and sweatshirts before the July open house. Also inside the display car was a case showing some pieces of railway china from CN & CP, both hotel and railway.
The Cab of CN 9173 was open for visitors, and is undergoing some work as we installed covers over the openings inside the cab where the windows and such are. This will receive another coat of paint over the summer, and will hopefully also see the damaged front window replaced.
The Ontario Northland Historical Society brought their display out once again.
The HO layout from The Hobby Shop, along with the old trolley coffee bar were a hit as well, as people reminisced about the store. Here a taxi had a bit of an incident.
Our small G Scale layout was up and running as well.
Bill Woods and Garry Eller brought the Ontario Northland Historical & Technical Society display out to the shop as well. Bill & Garry are both members of the NRM, and have been displaying with us at our train year model railway shows, and our Museum events for 16yrs. The other new displays for this year were the items from the former Niagara Central Hobbies in St. Catharines. People were able to sit at the trolley and see some of the pics that were displayed on the various activities over the last few months, as well as watch the trains run on the layout. Our small G Scale layout was also running with new trains on loan from the Jones family.
As far as equipment goes, HEPC 46 was moved forward to allow for some better pictures, as she is usually back beside the work platform. We will be starting up our Project 46 fundraising campaign again this year as we work to raise funds specifically for the cosmetic restoration of the locomotive, starting with the cab. She will also hopefully receive a new coat of paint. The ex-Atlas Steel Porter Fireless will also receive some new paint this year, once some metal work is done on the body. The plan is to repaint her back to the yellow she wore at the plant and upon initial arrival at Fort Erie. She currently wears black with white trim, which was only applied to match 6218 when it was at the Town owned museum. The GE 25tonner performed perfectly after having a set of new batteries installed just days before the open weekend. The GE will be getting some front end work at some point, as we believe there is some spring damage.
HEPC 46 was moved forward for display.
The GE tucked away for the night.
The Niagara Railway Museum would like to extend its thanks to everyone who came out to support us over the weekend. We had a great time, and hope you all did as well. We received a lot of very positive comments from new and repeat visitors. We will continue to work hard to improve the visitor experience and hope to be able to announce some good news in the coming weeks. Thanks also to our dedicated members who came out to help run the event.
Our next big event will be July 9 & 10, 10am to 4pm rain or shine. However, the Museum will also be open Saturdays from Fathers Day weekend to the end of September, 10am to 2pm. Admission for all events is by cash donation with every bit of it going directly towards the Niagara Railway Museum.