Rail and Steam Show Chugs In Toppenish - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Rail and Steam Show Chugs In Toppenish

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TOPPENISH, Wash.--All aboard the historic train cars at Northern Pacific Railways.  Northern Pacific held its eleventh annual Rail and Steam Show.  The show is the biggest event the museum holds all year.  People can take rides on a caboose, locomotive, or the smaller railrod--nicknamed the "speeder."   Museum members are glad to offer a rare experience that kids really enjoy.

"We have kids who come here and say, 'I've never ridden on a train!  This is really really cool!'" said longtime museum volunteer Judy Boekholder.

"The kids just love it," said museum President Dennis Lee.  [We] let them blow the horn and stuff like that.  They get a joy out of it."

The museum also sets up a model train village for the show.  The event showcases the role trains had in our nation's history.

"They obviously are something that helped our country grow and expand through the years," said Boekholder.  "They're a vital part of the history of the United States of America and of the Yakima Valley."

Northern Pacific holds the Rail and Steam Show to educate, entertain, and also to expand.   They are trying to raise enough money to refurbish a steam engine to use for future events.

"It was a basket case when we got it," said Lee.  "It's [coming] together.  We're just seeing if we can get some donations to help finish the project."

Boekholder thinks having steam in the show would be a great addition.

"We do caboose rides with our diesel electric engine, she said. "But the steam engine would be a lot more fun."

The museum needs about $75,000 to finish repairing the steam engine so people can ride it.  Until then, caboose rides rule the Rail and Steam Show.

If you can't make it this weekend, the museum will have a music festival next Saturday and Sunday. Looking ahead to the fall, Northern Pacific will hold its first everhaunted train rides starting in October.

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