|Hill City attraction still running full steam ahead|
|Friday, 03 August 2012 15:40|
1880 Train President Meg Warder says, "William Heckman, the founder of the train, wanted there to be a railroad or a place for all ages to be able to experience the steam experience and we've kept that alive through today, for 55 years. "Warder says the train rides between Hill City and Keystone not only remind visitors of the importance railroads played in building early communities... it's a way for families to build stronger connections with one-another. Warder says, "The communities in South Dakota are all basically formed because of the railroads coming through.
It's one of the only attractions you can do where you sit back and relax and not worry about having to drive. Your family can be together for 2 hours. It's just a wonderful way to see the Hills and experience what railroading was like in its heyday." She says even today, the locomotive still holds a specials place in South Dakota's history. First and foremost it's the oldest continuously operating tourist line in the United States.
Warder says, "There's other tourist railroads, but they've had their operations stop and start. It's a great way to be able to celebrate our history. It's a relaxing ride. It's the only train in the Black Hills. It's the only steam train in South Dakota that runs." It's a long history that keeps pulling in thousands of riders every year.Warder says compared to last year's numbers visitation to the historic rail line in on the rise.
She says coming up on August 18th they'll be holding a special open house at the depot... with several lucky riders getting the once in a lifetime chance to toot the trains whistle.