MARP June 14 meeting in Owosso followed by tours of Indian Trails and rail museum


Including a busy and important agenda, the June 14 meeting of Michigan Association of Rail Passengers will feature activities that members should enjoy.

Taking advantage of meeting in the railroad town of Owosso, the meeting has been set for 10 a.m. at the Steam Railroading Institute’s Visitor Center & Museum, 405 South Washington St.

The regular meeting will be held amidst displays at the institute and many members will be seated in historic train station benches. Museum Director TJ Gaffney will make a short presentation on the future of the museum, including the operation of its steam locomotives.

Immediately after the meeting, members can explore an Indian Trails inter-city motor coach that will be parked at the museum and then ride the coach to the bus company’s nearby maintenance facilities for a tour.

The Indian Trails participation is appropriate because the bus company provides Amtrak Thruway service and MARP and Indian Trails have been exploring the expansion of Thruway and other inter-city service.

The coach will return members to the Railroading Institute where they can explore the museum and grounds until 4 p.m. thanks to the $5 donation each member will pay to enter the museum for the meeting.

They can examine Pere Marquette No. 1225, the largest operating steam locomotive of its kind. This locomotive was used to generate computer images for the Warner Brothers film, “The Polar Express.” The engine pulls the North Pole Express each November and December from Owosso to Chesaning. It often is used for other excursions (although none are slated this year).

The Institute also features Flagg Coal Co. 75, a switcher tank-type steam engine resembling the childhood favorite, Thomas the Tank Engine.

Non-members are always welcome to MARP meetings, but in this case they will have to join members in paying the $5 donation to the Steam Institute.

The institute’s offices and museum are at 405 South Washington St., which is M-71. The site is situated south of downtown Owosso between the Shiawassee River and the mainline of Great Lakes Central Railroad. It also is a few yards north of the track of the Huron & Eastern Railroad.

Questions? Email Jim Wallington at

The Steam Railroading Institute’s web site is at:

The agenda will be posted at before the meeting.