JAMESTOWN, Calif. — On Saturday, September 18, Railtown 1897 State Historic Park (SHP) will officially celebrate the recent restoration of wooden Caboose #7 with caboose rides, handcar rides, storytelling, live music and more. Caboose #7 was originally built in 1923 and came to Jamestown in 1956. This caboose has appeared in many movies and TV shows, including Back to the Future III, where it was part of the dramatic train jumping scenes. Suffering from dry rot and poor remodeling in the 1980s, Park volunteers spent four years carefully researching and replicating original materials to make the caboose available for a return to train service.
On “Caboose Day,” Railtown 1897 SHP visitors can enjoy a ride in the beautiful wooden caboose and even sit high-up in the cupola for a conductor’s view of the train. Additionally, Richard “Dick” Tater will regale riders with cowboy songs on board the train. Because a limited number of seats are available, reservations are highly recommended. Ticket prices include Park admission and cost $13 for adults, $6 for youth, and free for children 5 and under (sitting in laps). Railtown 1897 SHP members ride free. on a space available basis. Advance reservations are available online or by calling 209-984-3953.
In addition to the popular caboose rides, there is lots to see and do at Railtown 1897 SHP on “Caboose Day.” Visitors are invited to oper ate the interpretive handcar on the roundhouse track from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and renown storyteller B.Z. Smith will be weaving tales of hobos and cabooses in the shade of the sycamores from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Also, an longtime engine club named the Foothill Flywheelers will display and operate small gas powered engines throughout the weekend.
After the special “Caboose Day,” caboose rides will be available on September 19, 25 & 26 on a first-come, first-served basis. Visitors are encouraged to check with the Park before visiting.
Railtown 1897 State Historic Park is located at the corner of Fifth Avenue and Reservoir Road in Jamestown, near Sonora. For more information, call 209-984-3953.