Railway Days is coming down the track — ETA next Thursday

One of the highlights of this year's Railway Days will be a tour to see a 105-year-old logging railway trestle bridge hidden away in the forest near Trout Lake. Re-discovered in 2002 by Bill Laux, this railway trestle bridge is well worth the trip. Photo courtesy of the Revelstoke Railway Museum

By David F. Rooney

Railway Days will be pulling into town next Thursday with an assortment of interesting and fun-filled activities to satisfy both families with kids and those of us who will enjoy the adventurous opportunity to explore seldom-viewed elements of the past like the century-old logging train trestle hidden away in the forest south of us.

While you can find a full schedule on the official Railways Days website, here’s a thumbnail description of the some of the major day-by-day events:

Day 1 — Thursday, August 11

The four-day celebration of our railroading heritage gets under way starting at 8 am on Thursday, August 11, with CP Employees Day at the Railway Museum until 4 pm.

The official launch will begin on Thursday with a two-hour outdoor barbecue beginning 5 pm. There will be some short remarks by Jennifer Dunkerson, the museum’s executive director, as well as Revelstoke Railway Heritage Society President David Johnson followed by music courtesy of the Maritime Kitchen Party.

Other activities include:

  • Registration for the photo contest — 9 am – 8 pm at the Railway Museum
  • Coffee in the Business Car — 10 – 11 am at the Railway Museum
  • A tour of the heritage panels along the River Trail — 10 am starting from the Revelstoke Museum & Archives
  • The BC Interior Forestry Museum — 10 am – 5pm

Day 2 — Friday, August 12

Country and Western singer Abe Zacharias will perform at the Last Spike Dinner and Silent Auction on Friday, August 12. Photo courtesy of the Revelstoke Railway Museum

The Railway Museum is holding its Last Spike Dinner and Silent Auction at its Rotary Park. Music and stories will be provided by Abe Zacharias of Salmon Arm who spent his railroading career working for the CPR at watch points in Rogers Pass. He has been performing Country & Western for 35 years and should be excellent. The menu for the dinner will consist of herb-marinated chicken breast or lemon dill salmon or New York strip steak plus Thai Noodle Salad and garden and Greek salads, all prepared by the staff of Riverside Landing. The Silent Auction will open for bids at 5 pm and dinner will be served at 6 pm. Tickets are $25 per person. Please call 250-837-6060 to make a reservation.

Other events this day will include:

  • Coffee in the Business Car — 10 – 11 am at the Railway Museum
  • A Heritage Cemetery Walk — 10 am  at Mountain View Cemetery. There is a $5 cost
  • Ghost Town Tours — 11 am – 3 pm at Three Valley Gap 
  • Photo Contest Judging — 1 – 8 pm at the Railway Museum
  • The Mid-Summer Affordable Art Fair — Revelstoke Visual Arts Centre

Day 3 — Saturday, August 13

Up for a spot of adventure? Then join the bus trip down Highway 23S and across the water to the forest near Trout Lake where a 106-year-old logging railway trestle bridge was discovered in 2002. A box lunch will be provided on this trip guided by Greg Brule and Jordy Hunter. You’ll need hiking boots for the 20-minute walk through the forest to the site of the trestle bridge and it would likely be a good idea to bring some bug spray, too. The bus leaves he Railway Museum at 8 am and returns at about 3 pm. Space is limited and there is a $25 per person cost but this will be a terrific adventure! For more information please call 250-837-6060.

While adventurous history buffs are off looking for the Arrow Lakes Logging Co. trestle, the Railway Museum will be hosting Family Day for families with children from 11 am until 3 pm. There will, of course, be games, crafts, music and prizes, as well as a barbecue hosted by Team Gloria, but the young set will have a special treat in store: an amazing railway-themed bouncer from Bounce Hire in Vernon. For more information please call 250-837-6060.

Other activities this day will include:

  • Parks Canada’s Celebrate the Summit with Stars, Cars and Guitars — all day, summit of Mount Revelstoke 
  • What Will Still Be Around — a talk by Brian Wilson at the Railway Museum 1 – 1:30 pm
  • Street Fest performance by Sister Girl — Grizzly Plaza 6:30 – 9:30 pm
  • A Magic Lantern Show — Nickelodeon Museum at 7:30 pm

Day 4 — Sunday, August 14

Why not stroll down to the Railway Museum to see the vintage cars that will be on proud display from 12 pm until 3:30 pm. You can also hear Brian Wilson’s talks about the Digital Realm of Archiving from 1 pm – 1:30 pm, or, if you really need to stretch your legs join the annual Pilgrimage to Eva Lake on Mount Revelstoke before returning to town to catch Broken Down Suitcase in performance at grizzly Plaza at 6:30 pm.

Other events include:

  • Coffee in the Business Car — Railway Museum, 10 – 11 am
  • BC Interior Forestry Museum is open 10 am – 5 pm
  • The Photo Contest Winners Announcement — Railway Museum at 2:30 pm
  • Toonie Swim for Kids — Aquatic Centre, 4 – 5 pm 

You can find a full schedule of the events on the official Railways Days website. For additional information please call 250-837-6060.