The Kansas City Northern
Railroad is an all volunteer, not for profit, 501 (c)(3) corporation in
association with the Kansas City, Missouri, Board of Parks &
Recreation Commissioners Volunteers in Parks Program.
Hours of Operation
The railroad operates weekends and holidays
(weather permitting) from the first weekend in May through the last
weekend in September. Hours are Saturday 10:00 A.M. until 6:00 P.M.,
Sunday and Holidays 12:01 P.M. until 6:00 P.M. Trains depart from the
depot approximately every seven minutes. Our fare is 50 cents for all
The group was formed in 1984 when the Kansas City Parks & Recreation
Department asked for volunteers to restore and operate the former Kansas City Zoo
train located in Swope Park which had been retired in 1972.
Our two restored Miniature Train Company
(MTC) and one Allen Herschell G-16 trains operate on ½ mile of track in
Frank Vaydik / Line Creek Park Kansas City, Missouri.
Kansas City Southern No. 31 (the red train, named the Southern Belle) is the oldest of the three. It entered service at the Swope Park Zoo in 1953. The train ran in Swope Park until 1972 and was then stored until 1984. After complete restoration by the volunteers, this was the first train to operate on the Kansas City Northern when operation commenced in July 1992.
Union Pacific No. 910 (the yellow train, named the City Of Kansas City) is the second oldest. It first operated at the zoo in Pittsburgh, PA in 1955. It later migrated to the city park in Manhattan, KS. The Kansas City Northern obtained the train when it was retired in Manhattan. It was subsequently fully restored and placed in operation on the Kansas City Northern.
Note: The above train is in a rail shop where it will be blasted and repainted in the Kansas City Northern paint scheme. Hopefully it will be finished when the 2012 season begins May 5th 2012.
Missouri Pacific No. 651 (the blue train, named The Eagle) is the newest of the three. It first operated at the Ross Park Zoo in Binghamton, NY in 1963. It was retired in 1986 and stored outdoors for many years. The Kansas City Northern purchased the rusted hulk in 2001. After extensive restoration, it was placed in service on the Kansas City Northern in 2005.
Our trains are Model G-16’s, two were built by the Miniature Train Company of Rensselaer, IN and one by the Alan Herschell Company of N. Tonawanda, NY to operate on 14, 15 and 16 inch gauge track. Ours operate on 16" gauge. (16” is the distance between the rails).
The locomotives are powered by Wisconsin V-4 28 HP air-cooled gasoline engines. The drive is through a fluid coupling to the transmission, then to all axles on the locomotives. All wheels on the locomotives and passenger cars have clasp type brakes operated by a vacuum system.
New volunteers are always welcome (and needed). No experience is necessary. We will train volunteers for any position. If you are interested in joining our crew, please pick up a membership application at the depot.
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