Kansas City Northern Railroad is an all-volunteer and nonprofit corporation 501c(3). It is operating under the KC Parks Partner program. This particular group of Northern Miniature Railroad came into being way back in 1984 when the Kansas City Parks and Recreation Department called for volunteers to restore and operate the former Kansas City Zoo, in Swope Park.
The Swope Park train had been sacked from its functional service from 1972. It was placed as an inactive piece of play equipment in one of the northern parks. It was again vivified and brought in work after the efforts of the Kansas City Railroad volunteer group.
Driving Force Behind the Kansas City Railroad
“I think I can” is the mantra of volunteers here at KCNRR.
Grasping a new learning set and refurbishing the old rusty stuff to its former glory, are what the dedicated volunteers have been doing from their dexterous hands since 1984. Fixing the challenging mechanical problem here at Kansas City Northern Railroad is the experience they enjoy each weekend in the summer as they handle the park train.
They vow to keep a little bit of history alive about this part of the world, and they hope others will also join them for serving this consecrated cause.
The Kansas City Northern Railroad operates on a half-mile elliptical egg-shaped track and encompasses the Southern Belle – Kansas City No. 31, The Eagle – Missouri Pacific No. 561 and the Line Creek Limited-Kansas City Northern No. 802. All of the trains are of Model G-16’s, meaning operate on a 16″ gauge track and were built by the IN, Miniature Train Company of Rensselaer, and Allan Herschell Company of N. Tonawanda, New York.
The park train has been functional and remains a source of amusement for 25 years this summer. The ride costs 75 cents. While the Railroad provided 60,000 rides in 2016 but still it is in many ways one of the best-kept secrets in the town.
The KCNRR remain open from the first weekend in May until the last weekend in September. There is a facility in the form of park train from the ’50s and ’60s, to gratify the fun for the entire family.
Call for Volunteers
At the National Train Day event, a formal ceremony is held by inviting many families around the park. This event aims to spread awareness and to call for more volunteers.
At this ceremonial occasion, the KCNRR group serves the guest by giving about 5,000 rides, which also include bounce houses, crafts, and a smaller 12-inch train for thrive on smile on the faces of little kid. This brings superlative contentment and joy to the volunteers.
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