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Record Set on Final Trails & Rails Run on Southwest Chief

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rtabern

Conductor
Joined
Nov 15, 2006
Messages
1,588
Location
Suburban Chicago
Thought all of my friends here would enjoy this article... we had a 14-year-old girl set the record for the most NPS Junior Ranger badges earned... this took place today aboard our LAST Trails & Rails program on the Southwest Chief from Chicago to La Plata.

http://www.aprhf.org/2015/07/19/ultimate-junior-ranger-rides-along-on-last-trails-rails-trip/

If you have ever enjoyed the Southwest Chief Trails & Rails program between Chicago and La Plata, I strongly encourage you to write and show that support to the National Coordinator of Trails & Rails, Jim Miculka, at jemiculka@ag,tamu.edu AND his boss, Don Wollenhaupt, at don_wollenhaupt@nps.gov, at the National Park Service in Atlanta.
 

J-1 3235

Lead Service Attendant
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May 6, 2004
Messages
465
Location
BOS
Great story, Rob, thanks for sharing it with us.

Sorry to hear the NPS cancelled the program on the Chief.

While I have enjoyed many T&R presentations over the years, the program you created was top notch! Thank you!

Mike
 

Railroad Bill

Global Moderator
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Robert, I wrote a letter to the two individuals you mentioned in the story and hope to receive an explanation as to why the program was cut.

Sorry to hear about this and hope the programs will be restored soon.
 

rtabern

Conductor
Joined
Nov 15, 2006
Messages
1,588
Location
Suburban Chicago
Robert, I wrote a letter to the two individuals you mentioned in the story and hope to receive an explanation as to why the program was cut.

Sorry to hear about this and hope the programs will be restored soon.
Thanks for your support. Our Trails & Rails program between Chicago and La Plata, MO was co-sponsored by the American Passenger Rail Heritage Foundation (APRHF), a non-profit 501©(3) rail history organization in La Plata. They covered more than $30,000 worth of hotel rooms for our volunteers during their layover and provided thousands more for our speaker system and other handouts, etc. After almost three years on the route, Jim Miculka with the National Park Service approached us and said that the non-profit could no longer be a sponsor. They cited a "conflict of interest" but wouldn't explain what that was!! Just amazing. I am hoping Amtrak will step in here and do something here, or that people who have enjoyed our program will write to the two NPS individuals involved in making this decision apparently. It's sad... my wife and I resigned as Coordinators... and now the program is "temporarily suspended until further notice"... Just another thing people love that is being cut for no reason at all. Hopefully if there is a big response we can be back on the train someday. Our final program was this past Sunday on Train #4. (This whole thing didn't totally surprise us, as I was a volunteer on the Empire Builder Trails & Rails program from CHI-MSP from 2006 to 2010. We got out program cut back then too and replaced with MSP-based volunteers with pretty much no explanation at all).
 

Bob Dylan

Conductor
Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
20,656
Location
Austin Texas
Sorry to hear this Rob and Kandace! Sounds political, have ya'll touched base with your Congressional Rep and Senators, perhaps they help find out what's going on!

Any possibility of doing a CHI- STL/STL-KCY route on the Lincoln and River Runner Trains?

I too wrote them, but being from Texas they probably lined the circular file with my letters!

Good luck, keep us posted! Jim
 
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