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For Immediate Release: 3/11/2015

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Railtown 1897 Resumes Steam Train Rides Behind Historic Sierra No. 3 Beginning on Saturday, April 4


Kim Baker, 209-984-4622


Cheryl Meyer, 916-445-2560

California State Railroad Museum Foundation




JAMESTOWN, Calif. – Beginning in April, Railtown 1897 State Historic Park (SHP) in Jamestown will resume offering popular steam-powered excursion train rides on weekends at 10:30 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m.

While the Park is open daily, on weekends beginning April 4-5, guests will enjoy a memorable six-mile, 45-minute round trip ride along the rails of the famous “Movie Railroad.”  Excursion train rides on opening weekend will be offered behind the “Movie Star Locomotive” Sierra No. 3.  And, during opening weekend only, residents of Calaveras, Mariposa and Tuolumne counties can visit the Park and ride for free with proof of residency. 

On the first day of operations on Saturday, April 4, 2015 the public is invited to attend the “Early Bird” program that starts at 7 a.m. in the Roundhouse to watch as the crew lights the fire and prepares the locomotive for the day.  The locomotive is started with the tossing of a burning rag into the firebox, then the crew works to fuel, lubricate and water the engine as the boiler is slowly brought up to temperature.  Then, interested spectators can follow it out into the yard and watch the turntable in operation as the crew moves the locomotive into place at the Depot.

Afterward, the Lava Cats (a pop duo) will provide live music on Saturday and Swing Gitane (a vintage jazz group) on Sunday, both days from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Many other special activities will be offered throughout the weekend, including tours of the Roundhouse, speeder demos with the velocipede on display, and demonstrations of the historic belt-driven machine and the blacksmith shops.

Capacity is limited for tickets for the steam train excursion rides so visitors are encouraged to arrive early.  All tickets include Park admission and are available online at or in person on a first-come, first-served basis at the ticket window beginning at 10 a.m. on the days the trains are running.  As of April 1, 2015, train ride tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for youths ages 6-17, and kids five and under are free along with new Park hours from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

After opening weekend, Railtown 1897 SHP will generally offer steam-powered excursion train rides behind Sierra No. 3 on Saturdays and vintage diesel locomotives on Sundays through the 2015 operating season.  Additionally, diesel train rides will be offered on Wednesdays throughout the summer season (July 1 through August 26). Because the schedule is subject to change with expanded service on holiday weekends, etc., visitors are encouraged to call 209-984-3953 or visit for updated information.


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California State Parks provides for the health, inspiration and education of the people of California by helping to preserve the state’s extraordinary biological diversity, protecting its most valued natural and cultural resources, and creating opportunities for high quality outdoor recreation.