Archive for April, 2009

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By: Jon Lewis  

(WSB Radio)  They were the staple of 19th Century transportation and now, thanks to federal money, they may be the key to travel in the 21st Century. Trains are coming back.

The Obama Administration, as part of the federal stimulus package, has devoted $8 billion for the development of high speed rail.  And the southeast United States, including Georgia, should see a large sum of money going towards the development of rail.

The government has identified 10 corridors, each from 100 to 600 miles long, with greatest promise for high-speed development.

They are: a northern New England line; an Empire line running east to west in New York State; a Keystone corridor running laterally through Pennsylvania; a major Chicago hub network; a southeast network connecting the District of Columbia to Florida and the Gulf Coast; a Gulf Coast line extending from eastern Texas to western Alabama; a corridor in central and southern Florida; a Texas-to-Oklahoma line; a California corridor where voters have already approved a line that will allow travel from San Francisco to Los Angeles in two and a half hours; and a corridor in the Pacific Northwest.

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The last steam locomotive built for Union Pacific railroad was welcomed by several hundred history buffs, train buffs and curious Benicians as it rolled through Benicia earlier today as part of a 32-day tour celebrating the 140th anniversary of the driving of the Golden Spike.

Benicia planning commissioner Rick Ernst organized the event and said he didn’t expect more than 50 people to attend. To his surprise, four or five times that number showed up, including Mayor Elizabeth Patterson, Vice-Mayor Tom Campbell and Councilmen Alan Schwartzman and Mike Ioakimedes.

Ernst set up an impromptu Benicia train station (a tent) in hopes that the train would make a temporary stop along its way from Roseville to Oakland — the Western-most destination on its 32-day round-trip journey from Cheyenne, WY.

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Spring means the trains come alive again in NC. With Tweetsie preparing for opening day on May1, 2009…it’s time to recognize some of the other train attractions in our great state!

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With 53 miles of track, 2 tunnels and 25 bridges, the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad offers a variety of excursions that explore the amazing landscape of Western North Carolina. With the romance and mystique of an era gone by, guests on-board the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad will enjoy scenic train journeys across fertile valleys and through river gorges in a spectacular region near The Great Smoky Mountains.

This section of Western North Carolina offers a wide array of ever changing vegetation and fantastic landscapes. Dating back to the 1800’s and located on the southside of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Murphy Branch allowed access to one of the most remote and beautiful places in the world.  Please take a moment to learn about our rich history by clicking here for additional information and historical photographs!

Visit: GSMR.com!

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Tweetsie is more than a train. It’s an institution, a tradition and a legend. Mention the name “Tweetsie” throughout the South and it conjures up memories for all age groups.

For children, it means a trip back into the Wild West, helping the US Marshal fight off howling renegades and would-be train robbers. It also means music and entertainment, exciting Country Fair rides and arcades, and lots of good things to eat.

For adults, it means a family oriented theme park in the scenic Blue Ridge mountains, providing a day of fun and adventure for themselves and their children. For old-timers, the name stirs up nostalgia and the uncomplicated days of yesteryear.

Visit Tweetsie.com!

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