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Railtown 1897 Celebrates Opening Weekend of Excursion Train Rides and Announces Expanded Season that Runs April-October

JAMESTOWN, Calif., March 22, 2024 In partnership with the California State Railroad Museum Foundation, Railtown 1897 State Historic Park in Jamestown will present a new and expanded season of weekend excursion train rides, starting on April 6-7, 2024. The historic No. 1265 diesel engine will be in operation all weekend, and excursion train ride departures for both days are scheduled for 10:30 a.m., 12 p.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. New in 2024, the weekend train ride season has been extended through October to provide more opportunities for guests from near and far to enjoy the unique experience.

Weekend train ride guests will enjoy a memorable six-mile, 45-minute round trip ride on the Sierra Railway through the picturesque Mother Lode countryside. Plus, a limited number of tickets are available to ride inside Sierra Railway caboose No. 7 that was featured in several movies and television shows, including Little House on the Prairie. In addition to the train ride experiences, Park visitors are encouraged to observe train crew operate the turntable at the start and end of each day. For opening weekend, vintage railroad equipment will be on display with several open to walk through, such as Sierra Railway coach cars No. 3, 5 and 6; these classic cars were featured in numerous movies and television programs including High Noon and Petticoat Junction.

Park visitors also have the opportunity to meet many local rail and museum enthusiasts who have a wealth of information to share. Representatives from the California State Railroad Museum Foundation will be available to answer questions and highlight the many benefits of joining the membership program. California State Parks staff are available to share information for those interested in learning about or joining the volunteer program. And local clubs such as the Early Day Gas Engine and Tractor Association are regularly on-site so guests can learn more about what they offer and see their impressive displays.

Excursion trains, programs, and activities continue throughout the year and visitors are encouraged to take a train ride or plan a day at the Park to enjoy a tour of the historic roundhouse and shops, picnic, and/or leisurely stroll around the grounds. The Park will be open daily April through October for its summer season from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for self-guided or docent-led tours along with exhibits that include interpretive signage.

Visitors are encouraged to purchase excursion train ride tickets online in advance. If still available on the day of the train ride, tickets can be purchased at the Depot Store on a first-come, first-served basis. All paid train ride tickets include Park admission and cost $23 for adults, $18 for youth ages 6-17 and are free for children five and under. And for those who want to ride in the Sierra Railway Caboose No. 7, ticket cost is $28 per person.

More information and advance excursion train ride tickets are available via this link. For more information about Railtown 1897’s events and activities and the park in general, please visit or call 209-983-3953. For more information about the California State Railroad Museum Foundation, please visit

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The California Department of Parks and Recreation, popularly known as State Parks, and the programs supported by its Office of Historic Preservation and divisions of Boating and Waterways and Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation provides for the health, inspiration and education of the people of California by helping to preserve the state’s extraordinary biological diversity, protecting its most valued natural and cultural resources, and creating opportunities for high-quality outdoor recreation. Learn more at

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About the California State Railroad Museum Foundation

The mission of the California State Railroad Museum Foundation (CSRMF) is to generate revenue and awareness on behalf of its destinations, while supporting the preservation, interpretation, and promotion of our railroad heritage. The Foundation provides funding for ongoing support of numerous programs, both at the museum's Old Sacramento location and at the historic park in Jamestown, Calif. For more information, please visit