California town holds 'Wig Wags Forever' festival to celebrate restoration of signals

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Wig-wag signals in downtown Richmond, Calif., are being restored to operating condition.
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RICHMOND, Calif. — Richmond will hold a “Wig Wags Forever” festival on Sunday, celebrating the restoration to operating condition of two of the nearly extinct grade-crossing protection devices.

The signals, near 1 West Richmond Ave. at a grade crossing in Point Richmond, about 13 miles northwest of Oakland, remained in place after BNSF Railway replaced them with modern crossing gates, but have not operated for 18 years. But Bay City News Service reports that, after the community raised $2,000 for their restoration, the signals will be reactivated Sunday. That will come following remarks by Richmond Mayor Tom Butt. during the festival to be held from 1-5 p.m. on the grounds of Mechanics Bank at 4 W. Richmond Ave. The festival will feature music, food, and rail- and history-related exhibits.

The bank is a restored former Santa Fe Railway building.

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