Author Topic: Victorian Christmas Photo Freight  (Read 1649 times)

Ed Lecuyer

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Victorian Christmas Photo Freight
« on: September 16, 2010, 01:40:37 AM »
MODERATORS NOTE:
Victorian Christmas Photo Freight has been converted from the pre-July 2008 WW&F Discussion Forum.
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Joe Fox wrote:
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Hi Everybody,

Remember the idea I came up with for a photo freight during Victorian Christmas. I have been thinking about it constantly, as to how the operation can go, so that it doesn't disturb the passenger operations that much. While #10 is on it's way to Alna Center, #52 could be getting the box car, and two flat cars ready for the freight train. Then when the steam train pulls back in, then #52 back in, hooks onto the entire train, puts the two coaches somewhere out of the way, take the caboose over to the awaiting freight consist, hooks onto it and puts it into the station. If all goes well, the steam engine should be almost done, or done with the servicing, so that they can go right in and take the photo freight North a few minutes behind #52 and the two coaches. What do you guys think of that idea?

Joe

Stewart Rhine replied:
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Joe, It's a good idea.  The East Broad Top RR used to run what they called a "Winter Spectacular" with lots of trains in the snow, some double headed.  There was even a triple headed run.  It was a big draw for railfans with not much else happening that time of year.  The only thing to consider is that our Christmas operation has always been geared to (and advertised as) a family train excursion and horse drawn wagon ride.  I don't think most of the regular Christmas visitors would be interested in a freight train.  They just want to ride up to Alna Center and take the sleigh/wagon ride.  That doesn't mean that we shouldn't run one, it just means that it the only people interested would be members taking photos of it.

I would like to see a photo freight in the snow - GREAT photo ops, maybe even a calendar shot would come from it.  If enough members want it run than I think it would work this year.   If it works OK this time than I think we should have one next year.  We could then advertise to the railfan community and their photos would get more publicity for the museum.

Stewart

Joe Fox replied:
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Hi Stewart,

I thought if it worked good this year, maybe have a designated weekend for it every winter. Me and James were and have been discussing this for a while. I am still trying to think of other ideas for the run. Like you said, not many railfans will show up to see a photo freight, due to unadvirtisement, but if we could get it advertised or something, then maybe some railfans might show up.  I have been watching a lot of videos on Conway Scenic, and EBT and other railroads recently to see how they might go about doing it. If any body has any ideas about the Photo Freight in the winter run, please let me know. Thanks.

Joe

John McNamara replied:
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A wonderful ingredient for Christmas trains or winter photofreights would be snow. Here's a photo that I took at our first Victorian Christmas.

MikeW replied:
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John, That would make a great Christmas Card!

- Mike

James Patten replied:
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I believe he did make it into a Christmas Card.

Joe Fox replied:
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James,

If a crew member wanted to have the steam engine run for a winter photo freight days worth of runs, would that person have to pay for it. I think it would be a good idea if the board talked about having an event like this be held during the winter sometime. Either in December, January, or February and have a full day of just photo freights and mixed trains. If the board doesn't think it would be a good idea, then we don't have to do it. I am going to start a poll, just to see what people think of the idea, it is only an opinion.

Joe

John McNamara replied:
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I can remember some email exchanges involving James an Jason a few years ago suggesting that we whould have a "Winter Festival" in mid January. If we did a winter photo freight, we certainly should schedule it for some time that there is a good chance of having snow cover. A train traveling along on bare ground past naked trees is not particularly photogenic.

It is expensive in manpower, materials, and wear-and-tear to operate the steam engine, so we should have some way of charging for this event. Charging fares for a diesel-powered photographer's special to drop off and pick up photographers at their prefered spots might be a good way to do that. Alternatively, the photo freight could be a mixed train that does run-bys, with passengers paying (obviously) to ride the mixed. Unlike some railroads, we have the advantage that most of our photo locations are only conveniently accessible by train.

A limiting factor, of course, is that winter is the only time available to make major (and some minor) modifications to the engine (installing the A/C and the home theater system, etc. )


Joe Fox replied:
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I have now posted a pole. Please be sure to click on the month that you think would make the best winter photo ops. Remember, it is only an opinion, not a definite event. If people like the idea, which I think it would be a great hit, as to you don't get to see a winter steam freight train every day. Again, it is just an opinion. Thanks

Joe
Ed Lecuyer
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