Free bus tours of Bailey Yard will be provided as part of the annual North Platte Rail Days celebration on Saturday, Sept. 16. Bus seats are filling up already, said Kirsten Parker of the Golden Spike observation tower overlooking Bailey Yard.
Guests will see live, action of operations on Bailey Yard, with Union Pacific employees serving as tour guides. Each 90 minute tour will originate at Cody Park, departing every 30 minutes and taking guests through the yard, with a stop at the Golden Spike tower before returning to the park, where family friendly festivities will be held.
Yard tour tickets are free, but with limited seats available, it is best to reserve your ticket in advance.
Reservations can be made online at www.NorthPlatteRailDays.com.
Ticket sales began on Tuesday, May 23, in a joint effort with the North Platte Visitor Center and Trains Magazine. A private pre-release of ticket reservations was offered through an e-blast, which was sent at 8 a.m. to train enthusiasts.
The first booking came in at 8:02 a.m., Parker said. And, within 12 hours of the private e-blast, 148 tickets were reserved by guests from 27 states and 5 countries. Of the 148 tickets reserved, only 5 were reserved by people in Nebraska, Parker said.
North Platte Rail Days will be held Sept. 15-17 in North Platte, featuring a model train show through the weekend, family festivities at the park on Saturday, a pancake feed at the Lincoln County Historical Museum, and other events.
Those wishing to be a part of the planning and/or the events are welcome to join. Contact Parker at the Golden Spike Tower at 308-532-9920 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Events such as North Platte Rail Days are not only a great community event, but also a wonderful income source to enhance tourism dollars for the community, Parker said.
When guests come to town, they also stay in locally owned hotels, dine in restaurants, shop in stores and fill up their tanks at the gas station, along with visiting other area attractions and events.