Category Archives: General Museum News

News, events, and other tidbits about the WW&F Railway Museum

A Celebration of Alna, Maine, June 16th!

Please join us on Saturday, June 16th, as our hometown of Alna, Maine, celebrates Alna Day! Alna Day will celebrate all things Alna: our residents, businesses, organizations, history, and future. Activities will be held at each station along the narrow gauge!

Activities at Sheepscot station (Museum grounds at 97 Cross Road) will include displays by the Alna Volunteer Fire Department and Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department, screening of the documentary “Currents, Courses, and Streams, Alna, Maine: Histories of a Backwater Town”, live music, a model railway, and displays from local organizations, artisans, businesses, and farms. Additionally, the Railway will offer human-powered rides on one of its historic handcars.

At Alna Center station, sports will be on offer with two botball matches at 9:45 a.m. and 10:45 a.m. organized by Ken Solorzano of the Alna Store and sack races organized by town resident and Museum volunteer Steve Zuppa. Walking directions will also be provided to the 1789 Alna Meetinghouse and c.1796 Center School, the second oldest schoolhouse in Maine, which will be open from 10 a.m. until 12 p.m.

Top of Mountain station will feature facepainting and nature scavenger hunts organized in partnership with Midcoast Conservancy and Juniper Hill School.

Additionally, the historic Head Tide church will be open from 10 a.m. until 12 p.m. While not accessible by train, the Head Tide church is a short trip by car.

All Alna Day activities, including train fare, are free for town residents. For other Museum visitors, standard train fare applies.

Event programs and tickets will be provided. Parking for Alna Day will be provided at Sheepscot Station, 97 Cross Road, Alna beginning at 9 a.m. Please follow all signs and directions regarding parking.

We hope to see you June 16th!

Steam Trains Saturdays & Sundays!

With the arrival of Memorial Day weekend, we are now running trains on a summertime schedule, with trains on Saturdays and Sundays! Steam trains depart Sheepscot station (97 Cross Road, Alna) at 10.30 a.m., 12 noon, 1.30 and 3 p.m. Our diesel train or Model T railcar will run at 10.55 a.m., 12.25 and 1.55 p.m. All trains operate crew, equipment and weather permitting.

While there is a charge to ride our trains (except during Victorian Christmas), a visit to our Museum grounds is always free! Stop by any Saturday or Sunday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. to see what projects are underway and watch trains depart and arrive at Sheepscot station. Learn more about the Maine two-footers!

Thank You, John H. Emery Rail Heritage Trust!

Within days of learning we are one of two 2018 W. Russell Rylko Memorial Award grant recipients from the Mystic Valley Railway Society, we learned our Museum has also been awarded a $5,000 grant from the John H. Emery Rail Heritage Trust! Like the W. Russell Rylko Memorial Award, the Emery Rail Heritage Trust grant has been provided to support the restoration and placement of the historic “boxed pony” Boston & Maine Moose Brook Bridge on our Museum’s Mountain Extension at Trout Brook.

The John H. Emery Rail Heritage Trust was created by John Emery, a native of Chicago, and a lover of the classic passenger trains of America. The Trust was founded as a way to support Mr. Emery’s interests in the passenger trains of the 1920s though the 1950s. The purpose of the Trust reads, in part,

“To help re-create and preserve, to the extent possible, the rail passenger travel experience as it was in the U. S. from approximately 1920 through 1960.

“To preserve and restore to working order rolling stock and other working artifacts from the “Golden Age” of the U. S. rail passenger service.

“The emphasis shall be on organizations that offer the general public an opportunity to ride historically significant equipment over historic rail lines. The Trust may, however, support organizations that would use modern equipment to restore passenger service over historic rails, or to build new rails on which to operate historic equipment in passenger service…”

This grant from the John H. Emery Rail Heritage Trust greatly helps our plans to bridge Trout Brook. Thank you!

Thank You, Mystic Valley Railway Society!

Mystic Valley Railway Society Director Joseph McDonough presented the announcement that our Museum was one of two recipients of the Society’s 2018 W. Russell Rylko Memorial Award. Member Bill Reidy accepted the grant on behalf of our Museum.

Today the Mystic Valley Railway Society announced our Museum is one of two organizations that are recipients of the 2018 W. Russell Rylko Memorial Award. Russ Rylko was the Society’s founding President 48 years ago and had a direct impact on the Society’s success over the following 43 years, until his passing in 2013. To honor Russ’ legacy, MVRS has presented the W. Russell Rylko Memorial Award annually since 2015.

The MVRS presented our Museum with a $6,100 grant to aid in completion of the renovations of the historic Moose Brook Bridge and its relocation to serve as our Trout Brook Bridge on our Mountain extension.

In addition to our Museum, we are very pleased to learn that Boothbay Railway Village is the other recipient of the 2018 W. Russell Rylko Memorial Award. MVRS has provided a $3,900 grant for use in Boothbay’s restoration of Bridgton & Saco River coach #11. B&SR #11 has been on loan to our Museum for the past year and a half and has served well during winter photographic trains and other special events. We’ll miss #11 when she heads back to Boothbay, but we look forward to when she emerges rebuilt from Boothbay’s shops!

We are very grateful to the Mystic Valley Railway Society and the Russ Rylko family for their support of our Museum. Thank you!

Trains Every Saturday!

During the next three Saturdays (May 5th, 12th and 19th), we will be operating diesel or steam and Model T railcar trains under our spring train schedule. Steam (May 5th) and Diesel (May 12th and 19th) trains depart Sheepscot station (97 Cross Road, Alna) at 10.30 a.m., 12 noon and 1.30 p.m. If crew and our railcar are available, our Model T railcar will run at 10.55 a.m., 12.25 and 1.55 p.m. Our summer schedule will start May 26th, with steam trains that weekend.

It’s been a very busy spring, with our popular Easter Eggspress March 31st that hosted over 1,000 passengers, plus steam train photo events in mid-April, as well as our recently completed spring work weekend, where volunteers old and new from across the country came to Sheepscot to work on Museum projects. After a long winter, the events were a treat, but we’re very happy to finally be starting our 2018 regular operating season!

While there is a charge to ride our trains (except during Victorian Christmas), a visit to our Museum grounds is always free! Stop by any Saturday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in May to see what projects are underway and watch trains depart and arrive at Sheepscot station. Learn more about the historic Maine two-footers!

Our Spring Work Weekend April 27th – 29th!

Every year since 1997, volunteers from around the country and overseas have travelled to our Museum in late April and over Columbus Day weekend to help work on numerous projects at the Museum. Our planned projects Friday, April 27th – Sunday, April 29th will include:

• Reconstruction of the Davis Grade main line in the area of mileposts 5.3 and 5.4, originally restored nearly 20 years ago;
• Construction of a two-story outside staircase for the Percival House;
• As well as other smaller projects so our Museum will be ready for the 2018 season!

The latest updates on our Spring Work Weekend can be found on our Museum forum!

Of course, visitors are welcome to stop by during the work weekend, watch & see how our railroad is maintained and grows!

Work will start at 7 a.m. and end around 5 p.m. (or a bit earlier Sunday). Delicious lunches and dinners will be provided to volunteers by the Museum.

Last Call for our Easter Eggspress March 31st!

Our 2018 Easter Eggspress will run on Saturday, March 31st!

Please join us for a special Easter egg hunting experience!

Easter Eggspress trains will leave Sheepscot Station (97 Cross Road, Alna) every 35 minutes from 11:25 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. headed to the egg hunt site at Alna Center.

At Alna Center, the egg hunt will be set up for three separate 3 age groups (0-3, 4-6, and 7 & up).

Since Easter egg hunts are for the young at heart, our normal child’s fare will apply to all! Train tickets are only $5.00 per person, and free age 3 and under.

Advance reservations are strongly encouraged; however, a limited portion of each trains capacity will be held for visitors without reservations. In addition, any tickets which aren’t reserved by the time of the event will also be available for walk-up passengers.

Advance tickets can be purchased online at wwfrytickets.simpletix.com.

Questions? Please call 207-882-4193, or email info@wwfry.org.

We hope you can join us on March 31st!

Join us for our Spring Photographic Excursions!

Saturdays, April 14th & 21st, 2018

April 14th will run 6 a.m. to 4.30 p.m., and April 21st 6 a.m. into the evening.

Mixed and freight trains like those commonly operated on the original Wiscasset, Waterville and Farmington Railway Museum will be in operation using our original & replica equipment.

Both days will include the firing of No. 9 starting at 6 a.m. and day session photo train operating 9 a.m. to 4.30 p.m.  April 21st will also feature a staged and lit night scene starting at 6 p.m.

Several unique photo opportunities will be provided both days.

Price is $150 per person April 14th, and $225 April 21st.

Maximum attendance will be 25 people April 14th and 20 people on April 21st.

Each day’s event will proceed if at least 15 participants have reserved by Monday, April 2nd.

Reserve your seat online at wwfrytickets.simpletix.com!
Questions? Please write to reservations@wwfry.org

It’s March!

Restoration of Bridgton & Saco River Railroad boxcar #67 continues in our shops!  Mike Fox photo.

We’re starting another busy month, as our volunteers continue work on a number of projects, including our Mountain Extension, steam Locomotive #10 and B&SR boxcar #67. Saturdays and Wednesdays are usually our busiest days, with volunteers working on both indoor and outdoor projects, weather permitting. Details on our March work sessions can be found here.

We will end March with our first public trains of the 2018 season! Our Easter Eggspress trains will be running Saturday, March 31st, with trains leaving Sheepscot Station (97 Cross Road, Alna) every 35 minutes from 11:25 a.m. until 3:30 p.m., heading to the egg hunt site at Alna Center.

Since Easter egg hunts are for the young at heart, our normal child’s fare will apply to all! Train tickets are only $5.00 per person, and free age 3 and under. Advance tickets can be purchased online at wwfrytickets.simpletix.com.

And a reminder! Our Museum will be offering Spring Photographic Excursions next month, on April 14th and 21st. Both days will feature the firing of steam locomotive No. 9 starting at 6 a.m. and day session photo train operating 9 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. April 21st will also feature a staged and lit night scene starting at 6 p.m.

All of our original and replica equipment will be used to demonstrate mixed and freight trains commonly operated on the old WW&F during the photo events. Several unique photo opportunities will be provided both days.

Ticket prices are $150 for the April 14th day event, and $225 for the the April 21st day/evening event. Reserve your seat online at wwfrytickets.simpletix.com!

Our Easter Eggspress March 31st!

Our 2018 Easter Eggspress will run on Saturday, March 31st!

Please join us for a special Easter egg hunting experience!

Easter Eggspress trains will leave Sheepscot Station (97 Cross Road, Alna) every 35 minutes from 11:25 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. headed to the egg hunt site at Alna Center.

At Alna Center, the egg hunt will be set up for three separate 3 age groups (0-3, 4-6, and 7 & up).

Since Easter egg hunts are for the young at heart, our normal child’s fare will apply to all! Train tickets are only $5.00 per person, and free age 3 and under.

Advance reservations are strongly encouraged; however, a limited portion of each trains capacity will be held for visitors without reservations. In addition, any tickets which aren’t reserved by the time of the event will also be available for walk-up passengers.

Advance tickets can be purchased online at wwfrytickets.simpletix.com.

Questions? Please call 207-882-4193, or email info@wwfry.org.

We hope you can join us on March 31st!