Railway Station Museum getting robbed for anniversary

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The Miami Railway Station Museum will be celebrating a big milestone this summer in a unique way.

The Railway Station Museum will be celebrating its 130th anniversary on July 26, and it’s getting robbed to commemorate the occasion.

This is the first time the museum has staged a robbery, and Board Chair Joan Driedger said the event is quite different from what they usually do.

“When we were 125 years old we had a tea,” she said. “We have a new board… they’re very enthusiastic.”

The Miami Showcase runs from 3 to 7 p.m. that day, and the museum will have bands playing on their platform.

At 4 p.m. the program starts with presentations from the town and museum, and once those are done the gold robbers are going to strike.

“There’s going to be people on horses,” Driedger said. “There’s going to be gold nuggets and gold bars that are going to be stolen by these masked bandits on horses, and then we’re going to chase them down and recover what we can.”

In the bag will be 200 tickets the museum sold, and a lucky winner will be chosen to win $250.

That’s not all that’s going on at the museum. There are many ongoing projects this summer, like painting the interior of the building.

“Some of it hasn’t been painted for many, many years,” Driedger said. “We had cracks and drywall repaired last year.”

The outdoor waiting room door is being replaced, and the museum is looking at making their newly installed platform wheelchair accessible.

A large model train was recently donated to the museum, and Driedger said the train will be painted in the next weeks.

“We’re setting up this model railway,” she said. “It’s going to be between the crate shed and the display area, and it’s going to actually go through the wall. It’s going to be really cool.”

The relocation of the caboose to Miami is another major project the museum is undertaking. The 1914 wooden Canadian Pacific Railway caboose is coming from another museum, and Driedger said they are working to set up tracks for it to sit on when it arrives.

“It’s all logistics now,” she said. “We’re trying to raise money to pay for moving this caboose, and there are also five or six motor cars.”

To help pay for the move, the museum will also be holding an all-ages golf tournament on July 21 at the Miami Golf & Country Club. There are 15 teams signed up, and Driedger said they are hoping to get 18 teams out to play.

The museum also has some new board members. Driedger said it’s good to have new, enthusiastic faces to help out.

“There are lots of ideas and great volunteers,” she said. “We’ve had really great cooperation from the R.M., and these new volunteers have been going out and they’re very enthusiastic. I’m very pleased.”

“There’s a lot of things going on in Miami and young people are behind them,” she added. “It’s really great to see.”

It’s a busy time for the museum. Driedger said there have already been over 500 visitors this season, which started in June.

“It’s really interesting,” she said. “People tell us really interesting stories and their memories of the museum. There’s been lots of really good response.”

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