Great Gold Robbery adds excitement to Miami Showcase

One of the robbers makes off with the gold during the Great Gold Robbery at the Miami Railway Station Museum. (Aaron Wilgosh/Postmedia)

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A large crowd gathered to take in the second annual Miami Showcase Friday night as the RM of Thompson wanted to give community members a chance to get out and see what sort of products and services are offered locally while enjoying some time outside, and the event was capped off with some donations made by RM of Thompson’s Reeve Brian Callum.

“It’s our second year of doing this,” said Callum. “We have a lot of wonderful things going on in Miami and it is nice to be able to display them all. Lots of merchants come to town and display their wares and possibly improve their sales and showcase things we have going on in town here.”

The RM of Thompson announced the donations at the event. The first was a $1,000 donation to the Railway Station Museum to help with some painting needed inside of the building. The second was made to the Miami Golf and Country Club. $1,679 was handed over to help with the purchase of a new debit machine terminal to help things run a little smoother at the club. The final, and largest donation of the night, was made to the Miami Curling Club for $2,500. The money was given to help with repairs needed on the roof and some other things going on at the club.

The council to the RM of Thompson also had the chance to donate some money back to a few organizations as well, as each councilor made a $1,000 donation, $500 from the council member and $500 matched from the RM of Thompson, to a local group. Miami Recreation and Playspaces, Miami Children’s Facility, Dunston Church, and the newly planned cenotaph in town were all recipients.

“It’s just another way we can give back,” said Callum. “Sometimes we have some money left over at the end of a budget year and we see all this stuff going on in town and everyone working so hard to fundraise to get things done. It’s nice that the council of the RM can give some money to help spearhead those projects and get them to completion.”

The event was paired with the 130th anniversary of the Railway Station Museum in Miami, a fantastic spectacle of a gold robbery that took place right outside of the museum, in hopes of raising more funds to help bring a new caboose and other rail-related memorabilia.

“The Railway Station Museum is an amazing addition to Miami and you have to give the board of that facility a lot of credit for all the work they do to keep that place up to date,” he adds. “It’s an old building and it takes a lot of work. They’re very innovative in what they come up with for ideas to fundraise and the addition of the caboose here is going to be a wonderful addition, plus the platform they put in.”

The Great Gold Robbery began after the presentations were made by the RM, two bandits rode horses to the front of the Museum and quickly made off with a bag full of gold – ballots sold with the winner taking home $250 – before being cornered and chased off by the sheriff.

“We wanted to do something special for the 130 years and we wanted to see if we could reenact a robbery,” said Railway Station Museum board member, Glenda Burnett. “This board is awesome, we come up with a little gem of an idea and everyone jumps in. We can’t do it without everyone, I just find that working with this board is really easy, we all work together, and we get a lot done.”

The museum is currently working on bringing a caboose from the year 1914, and the rail line was installed to the northwest of the museum to accommodate the new attraction. Some jiggers and motor cars will also be coming to Miami along with the caboose. The tracks were installed Saturday morning thanks to some helpful volunteers.

“We have a lot of goals we’re working on,” she adds.  “We want to get our new caboose down and in, and once we get that in, it will be the refurbishing and then it will be something else. The whole town is growing now, everyone is doing something, and it’s really positive time here in Miami.”

Group Therapy, The Hillside Gang, The Duncan Boys and Tenth Street Band all performed on the new platform at the Railway Station Museum Friday night. The museum was also gifted a working model train set that should be completed and set up in the near future.

The caboose will arrive in Miami sometime after August 17.