Amtrak: National Train Day is done

Railroad representative blames 'financial challenges' for popular promotion cut
RELATED TOPICS: AMTRAK | PEOPLE | RAILFANING
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WASHINGTON — After eight years, Amtrak is pulling the plug on one of its more successful promotions: National Train Day.

In an e-mail to Trains Correspondent Bob Johnston, Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari says: “Since its inception, Amtrak Train Days/National Train Day has been a popular program, allowing us to celebrate the value that Amtrak brings to local communities nationwide. In light of the financial challenges we are currently facing, we have chosen not to continue the Amtrak Train Days program and to prioritize our resources more efficiently. We would like to thank everyone who devoted their time and effort over the years to making these celebrations of Amtrak and passenger train travel a success.”

Magliari says the popular Amtrak Exhibit Train tour would continue and will make its scheduled appearance at Union Depot Train Days in St. Paul, Minn., April 30-May 1.

Amtrak started National Train Day in 2008 as a way to spread information to the public about the advantages of rail travel and the history of railroading in the United States. It was held each year on the Saturday closest to May 10, the anniversary of the Golden Spike which marked the completion of the first transcontinental railroad in 1869.

Organizers held events at Amtrak stations, tourist railroads, and railroad museums across the country, with major events usually consisting of equipment displays in major stations across the Amtrak system. From 2008 to 2012, each National Train Day featured an official celebrity spokesperson, who appeared at a single event.

Several cities featured rail equipment and displays from freight railroads, transit agencies, non-profit rail organizations and historical societies as part of National Train Day.

In 2015, Amtrak replaced National Train Day with a company-sponsored event called Amtrak Train Days. The format changed from multiple events on a single day in several cities to individual events over the course of the spring, summer and fall, but most communities that held National Train Day previously continued to follow the same format and schedule as before.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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