• An engineer inspects the running gear of a steam locomotive at Steamtown NHS

    Steamtown

    National Historic Site Pennsylvania

Steamtown NHS Cancels 2013 Holiday Express Excursions

Subscribe RSS Icon | What is RSS
Date: September 10, 2013
Contact: Kip Hagen, 570-340-5182

SCRANTON, Pa. Steamtown National Historic Site announces the cancellation of the park's 2013 "Holiday Express" excursions to Moscow and Gouldsboro. Park Superintendent Kip Hagen, in announcing the recent decision, noted that the historic commuter coaches used for these excursions are dependent on steam-powered locomotives to provide passenger comfort and safety. The park is in the process of a major maintenance and rebuild of its locomotive power fleet, and is not operating mainline steam locomotives during this time. "We realize that, because these excursions are extremely popular with our visitors, many people will miss this holiday opportunity. While we regret to announce this cancellation, we want our visitors to know that we continue to be diligent and proactive in our efforts to secure the resources necessary to restore and return some of our historic locomotives to operating condition, which will allow the Park to continue its unique mission of providing 'live steam' interpretive programs well into the future."

While the "Holiday Express" excursions have been cancelled, there are still opportunities for visitors to create holiday magic at the park this year! Our 2013 holiday events kick-off with an Entrance Fee Free weekend to commemorate Veteran's Day. The park's Entrance Fee will be waived during the entire weekend, November 9 – 11, while the "Scranton Limited" short train rides will operate at 10:30 and 11:30 a.m., and 1:30 and 2:15 p.m. each day. Cost is only $5.00 for all, ages 6 and older.

For the 15th year, the Canadian Pacific Railway is expected to begin its annual Holiday Train event from the park on Tuesday, November 26, between 5:15 – 5:45 p.m. The Canadian Pacific's goal is to raise awareness of the need to stock food banks in local communities year-round, but particularly at this special time of the year! Bring along non-perishable food items, or cash donations which increase the buying-power of the food banks, and enjoy the free entertainment and holiday festivities!

Additionally, the "Scranton Limited" short rain rides will continue operating with a historic diesel locomotive on Fridays through Sundays until Saturday, November 30. These 30-minute train rides depart from the Roundhouse boarding area at 10:30 and 11:30 a.m., and 1:30 and 2:15 p.m. Cost is only $5.00 per person, all ages 6 and older. Admission to the National Park grounds at Steamtown is $7.00 daily, ages 16 and older. Children under age 15 accompanied by an adult are admitted to the Park at no charge. The daily Entrance Fee includes parking and access to the outdoor grounds, the museum complex, walking tours, and the Park movie "Steel and Steam."

Located in downtown Scranton, Pa., Steamtown NHS is open daily from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. From I-81 follow exit 185 (Central Scranton Expressway); then, follow the brown and white signs to the main entrance at Lackawanna and Cliff Avenues (GPS: N 41.41, W 75.67). Additional general park information is available by phoning (570) 340-5200 during regular business hours, or by visiting the Park website at www.nps.gov/stea anytime!

- NPS -

 

Did You Know?

USS Olympia

Many railroads, particularly Eastern roads, used anthracite coal for locomotive fuel during the early steam era. During World War I, the US Navy and the Allied Forces used anthracite coal to power the steam boilers of warships such as Admiral Dewey's USS Olympia, which is berthed at the Independence Seaport Museum in Philadelphia. Burning anthracite resulted in low-smoke emissions from steamship boilers and gave the Allies a strategic opportunity to close-in on the enemy in a battle. With anthracite coal diverted to the war effort, locomotive builders adapted to using bituminous coal in their future designs.