The Florida Railroad Museum’s fall events are fast approaching and all the popular events are returning for 2019. The Museum’s Parrish station and ticket office are at 12210 83rd St., just off highway 301 N.
The Civil War re-enactment returns on Oct. 5 through 6. Come out and learn about the war and the soldiers who fought it, how they lived, what they wore, their weapons and more. There will be two battles each day. This re-enactment is sponsored by the Florida-based 75th Ohio Volunteer Infantry Regiment, Company A who pose as both Union and Confederate soldiers. Come visit their camp, see how they dress, take a look at their weapons and talk to them about their own experiences.
Later in October on the weekends of 19 through 20 and 26 through 27 is the annual Pumpkin Patch Express. Ride the Express to the Museum’s own fall festival. The six mile train ride to Willow and all activities including the bounce house, hay maze, hay wagon rides, hand crafts and more are available at the Willow Station and yard and are included in your ticket fare.
In November, they pretend it is early June of 1944 at a small village near the coast of Nazi-occupied France. The Allied forces have landed in Normandy and are quickly advancing toward Nazi General Von Kessinger’s camp. If your papers are in order, you will be permitted to escape with the general onboard his train, racing across the French countryside, as French Resistance, U.S. and British forces give chase. What will the general’s troops do if they encounter Allied forces? Will the general evade Allied capture? Be sure your papers are in order before finding out – the Germans will be checking for spies! Plan now to attend this action packed event on Nov. 9 and 10, the weekend before Veteran’s Day. There will be Allied and German camps, equipment exhibits, authentic World War II vehicles, WWII weapon displays, demonstrations and exciting battle re-enactments.
The ever-popular Hole in the Head Gang will be back on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1. This comical and family friendly Wild West style train robbery will be sure to please. Come out, but be careful to guard your valuables and help protect our gold. You never know who will win the shoot-out.
Drum Roll — the North Pole Express returns, bigger and better than ever. The 2019 Florida Railroad Museum’s North Pole Express will be departing the Parrish station twice a night throughout December. This magical trip to the North Pole will excite the young and old. Santa and all his elves are looking forward to seeing you all. Tickets are still available – get yours today. Did you know in 2017 the Florida Railroad Museum’s North Pole Express was voted one of the top ten Christmas-related train rides in North America by MSN?
Do you just want a relaxing train ride without all the fuss? The museum operates General Admission Excursions every non-event Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Come join for a leisurely ride through rural Florida and a visit to our museum, housed in the station in what used to be the logging community of Willow.
Are you a railfan and interested in railroading? The museum’s train crew is all volunteer. You, too, can become part of the action. Just ask any of the volunteers how to apply so you can come on out and join the crew.
The Florida Railroad Museum is an IRS approved 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Museum operations are funded solely by membership fees, donations and ticket sales. The officers and directors of the museum are all non-compensated volunteers. It is the museum’s mission to preserve the history of railroading in Florida and to provide the experience of riding in railroad cars that were used in commercial service, some on these same rails, during the 1940s and 1950s. The Museum’s trains ride the rails first laid down by the Seaboard Air Rail Line in 1903. For more information on the Florida Railroad Museum and ticket sales, visit its website at www.frrm.org or call the ticket office Wednesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 941-776-0906.