Grapevine, Texas, tourist railroad to resume operations on Saturday

News Wire Digest fourth section for May 7: Franklin Park (Ill.) Railroad Daze postponed; OmniTRAX joins supply-chain group
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The Grapevine Vintage Railroad, shown in 2017, will resume operations on Saturday.
TRAINS: David Lassen

Thursday afternoon rail news:

— The Grapevine Vintage Railroad in Grapevine, Texas, will resume operations Saturday after closing in March because of the coronavirus pandemic. On Sunday, the railroad will offer four 1-hour Mother’s Day excursions, departing at 10 a.m., noon, 2 p.m., and 4 p.m. Per state social distancing recommendations, each coach will have a maximum capacity of 18 passengers, and seats will be sanitized between each trip. More information is available at the railroad’s website.

— Railroad Daze in the Chicago suburb of Franklin Park has become the rail-related celebration in Illinois to be disrupted by the coronavirus — but unlike the others, the Franklin Park event, which had been set for June 11-15, has not been cancelled. Mayor Barrett Pederson told the Chicago Tribune’s suburban Pioneer Press the event is being postponed, with hopes of holding it in some form later this year. The event traditionally includes displays of equipment that are open to the public, but that could be problematic: “They would have to be cleaned after every person touched them,” Pederson said. “It’s just not feasible.” Railroad Days festivals in Galesburg and West Chicago, Ill., have previously been cancelled.

— Short line holding company OmniTRAX has joined Georgia-Pacific’s Point A Center for Supply Chain Innovation, which unites major companies, start-ups, and academic institutions to develop global supply chain solutions. “Joining Point A is another way to bring a valuable understanding of rail to the forefront of all supply chain conversations,” sNathan Brown, Vice President of Strategy at OmniTRAX, said in a press release. “Rail provides inherent advantages other modes of transportation can’t replicate. Understanding how rail reduces transportation spend, increases shipping capacity, enhances safety and improves sustainability is critical for shippers striving to be more competitive in the global marketplace.”

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