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MARP meets Aug. 19 in Bangor

MARP Member Meeting
Saturday, August, 19, 2017
10 a.m. – Noon
Odd Fellows Hall
235 W Monroe St, Bangor MI 49013

(On the 2nd floor above the Bangor Historical Society Museum)
Map & Directions

West Michigan is beautiful this summer! The blueberries are ripe, the sweet corn is ready and the Freestone Pickles may be curing in the barrels across the tracks from the Bangor train station.

We hope you are planning to “come on out” to enjoy the sights and smells – and while you’re at it, join fellow MARP members and friends in the interesting meeting planned for us.

Ron Pesch, author of “Big Wheels Turning: Greyhound in Michigan”, will treat us to the surprisingly interesting story of the 1914 Hupmobile that became a fleet of inter-city buses and the forgotten role played by West Michigan.

The Odd Fellows Hall is located in the historic Funk, Steinman & Ely Building, above the Bangor Historical Society Museum. Look for the building with the big green awning on the south side of Monroe Street (aka M-43) a few buildings west of the railroad tracks.

The Museum houses, among other things, a collection of Kalamazoo Toy Trains, which were manufactured in the Bangor train station during the years prior to restoration of passenger service in 1984. The museum is open 10AM to 4PM on Saturdays.

For the gardeners among you, a visit to the Liberty Hyde Bailey Museum might be in order before you leave Bangor. The museum is located in the childhood home of Liberty Hyde Bailey, considered the “father of horticulture”.  Saturday hours are 9AM to 4PM.

Or you might plan a whole weekend of activities including fun on the beaches at South Haven or Van Buren State Park and a visit to the Michigan Maritime Museum.


August 2017 edition of OnTrack

Here is the latest issue of ON TRACK with a number of topics we hope you will find interesting and informative.

The attached bulletin includes:
  • an article from the Midwest High Speed Rail Association about the significance of the Midwest Rail Plan Study
  • a look at Trains, Buses and Beers in Traverse City
  • Operation Life Saver meeting August 11 in Ann Arbor
  • $5 Amtrak fares to Detroit
  • Michigan routes show ridership gains in June
  • how to listen in to 2 upcoming Midwest Rail Plan workshops
  • an invitation to share your summer travel experiences
  • NARP’s “Summer By Rail” internship program

Midwest Rail Conference slated for Aug. 15-17, 2017 in Kalamazoo

Midwest Rail Conference
“Midwest Connections: Passenger and
Freight Rail Look to the Future”
gust 15-17, 2017
MU Fetzer Center, Kalamazoo MI


In its fifth year, the Conference focus has been expanded to encompass the broader Midwest region. In addition, the 2017 conference will join forces with two other events by leading rail transportation organizations: the Summerail 2017 event organized annually by the Freight Rail Transportation Committee (AR040) of the Transportation Research Board; and the annual meeting of National University Rail Center (NURail), the first USDOT OST-R University Transportation Center dedicated to the advancement of North American rail transportation.

Events will kick off with the Student Scholarship Fundraiser Golf Outing at the Ridgeview Golf Course and Committee Meetings on Tuesday morning/afternoon, followed by the Opening Reception and live music with the Norfolk Southern Lawmen Band at the Bell’s Brewery “Backroom” in Kalamazoo.

Technical Sessions will take place all day Wednesday, August 16, at the WMU Fetzer Center. The luncheon Keynote Speaker will be Joseph McHugh, senior vice president and chief for Amtrak Government Affairs and Corporate Communication.

The opening plenary session is a panel on “Autonomous Vehicles and Their Impact on the Rail Industry”. Following that, three panelists will talk about “State DOT Rail Programs” in Ohio, Indiana and Wisconsin. “High(er) Speed Rail” will be discussed from the perspectives of IL-DOT, an academic researcher, and a rail and transit consultant from Parsons Brinckerhoff. Other break-out sessions will discuss “Future of Freight”, “Urban Rail”, “Short Lines”, and “Inter-City Passenger Services”.

The conference will wrap up on Thursday with field trips featuring a visit to a Cargill facility in Decatur, a train ride to Battle Creek on the upgraded Wolverine Higher Speed Rail Corridor, topped off with a visit to the Little River Railroad in Coldwater.

CLICK HERE to view the Conference Program

REGULAR REGISTRATION begins July 1 at a rate of $250 per person.

Blocks of rooms at four Kalamazoo hotels will be held until July 24 for conference participants.

To register, view the complete 3-day Agenda, and learn about lodging Visit

July 2017 edition of OnTrack

Just in time for the 4th of July! Here is the latest issue of ON TRACK with a number of topics we hope you will find interesting and informative.
  • All are welcome to attend the July 15 MARP Meeting in Traverse City. See announcement on page 1.
  • The Midwest Regional Rail Plan Study is well underway and providing interesting information on existing conditions.
  • Registration is now open for the Midwest Rail Conference, August 15-17, at Western Michigan University. An interesting program is on tap.
  • Detroit’s new QLINE streetcar extends free rides all summer.
  • Midwest (and other) towns hold #Rally4Trains events to raise awareness of proposed cuts to Amtrak budget.
Michigan Association of Railroad Passengers

Come to Traverse City for the July 15, 2017 meeting

  Saturday, July 15, 2017
Traverse Area District Library,
610 Woodmere Ave,
Traverse City, MI 49686.

Meeting details:

The July membership meeting will be held on Saturday, July 15, 10 AM-Noon, at the Traverse Area District Library, 6120 Woodmere Ave, Traverse City MI 49686.Tyler Bevier, planner for the Bay Area Transportation Authority, will talk about the unique multi-jurisdictional transit service in the Grand Traverse region. The Groundwork Center will provide an update on the A2TC (Ann Arbor to Traverse City) inter-city rail project.

If you plan to make a weekend of it, book your accommodations as early as possible. When we last checked, rates at Baymont Inn  & Suites Traverse City (231)933-4454, normally reasonable, were rising. You might consider Cadillac or another nearby location.