Monday, October 16, 2017

Rail Travel Tours journey to York Factory

 This summer, our own Felix Lesiuk led the Rail Travel Tours trip to historic York factory. 

By Felix Lesiuk

After the 3 hour jet boat ride we got to York Factory. It was absolutely the nicest fall day you can imagine. After climbing up from the dock we met Claude Daudet, our host and guide from Parks Canada. The first concern for everyone one was, “Where are your bathrooms?”  Once that task was taken care of, we had a tour on the boardwalk of the cemetery, powder house ruins and where the ships were pulled up for the winter. We also got to look at what was left of a replica York boat that was used for the TV series “Quest for the Bay". 

We got a tour of the grounds and the main building as well as being able to climb up into the rooftop cupola.   If you need to know anything about the North American fur trade, this place is ground zero! While we were there, a group of American goose hunters dropped in by helicopter for a visit.  They looked like they just walked out of the pages of a Cabelas catalogue! After a delicious BBQ on the shore we headed back.  Along the way, we had a look at the failed Port Nelson site and even saw a polar bear and some seals on our return trip.  We had dinner in Gillam and went to bed for an early wake up the next morning. We had to be at the station for 5 am as VIA was scheduled to depart at 5:30.  This meant a 4 am wake up call. Thankfully we got to catch some sleep when we got onto the train before breakfast. I took full advantage and was the last for breakfast!
 

We left on time and arrived in Thompson later in the morning. We had time to walk around and enjoy the beautiful fall day. I walked around and checked out the yard and some of the Hudson's Bay Railway equipment. 






Thursday, October 12, 2017

Last chance to ride the Assiniboine Valley Railway until December

This weekend is your last chance to ride on the Assiniboine Valley Railway until December, when they have their annual Christmas run. October is an especially wonderful time to ride, as the fall foliage is in its full glory!

They're open from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday, October 14, and from 1:00PM to 5:00PM on Sunday, October 15. A ride costs two bucks and you can buy a 12 ride pass for only $20! Kids two years of age and under ride for free. All minors must be accompanied by an adult. The AVR is located at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just west of Assiniboine Park.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Winnipeg Model Railroad Club mourns passing of long time member Lorne Brady

We are saddened to announce the passing of long time WMRC member Lorne Brady. Lorne died on September 26, 2017. He was 86 years old. He worked for many years at the Winnipeg Tribune. He resided in River Park Gardens for five years before he passed away. A memorial service was held in his honor on October 1 at Glen Lawn Funeral Home.

Saturday, October 07, 2017

The date for the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club's next meeting has been moved to October 27

Please note that the date for the next meeting of the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club has been moved to Friday, October 27.

Tommy Kucera will be making a presentation about railroading in Prague. The meeting starts at 7:30 PM at the Charleswood Legion, 6003 Roblin Boulevard. Hope to see you all there!

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Manitoba Mega Train Show to be held on September 30 and October 1

This is the big Kahuna! The ultimate train show experience! The biggest train show between Toronto and Calgary is back! It's the MANITOBA MEGA TRAIN SHOW, and it's better than ever! Last year the show had over 3,000 happy guests, and with 40,00 square feet of space, there's plenty of room for more in the Red River Exhibition Place!

The Manitoba Mega Train Show will be held on Saturday, September 30 and Sunday, October 1 at Red River Exhibition Place, 3977 Portage Avenue. Hours are from 9AM to 5PM on both days. Adult admission is $7.00. Youth 4-12 is $5.00. Infants 3 and under free. A family pack (which includes two adults and up to three children 4 to 12 years of age) is $20. As usual, each admission entitles you to free unlimited rides on the Mega Train!

Be sure to check out their Facebook page at  https://www.facebook.com/ManitobaMegaTrain/

Monday, September 11, 2017

See the Gateway Western railway at Winnipeg Railway Museum's Railway Days this weekend

The WMRC's Gateway Western Railway, undoubtedly the largest of its kind in the city, will be open for public viewing this weekend at the Winnipeg Railway Museum as they hold their annual Railway Days event. The Gateway is open to the public only twice a year, so be sure to grab this rare opportunity to view it!

The museum is located on the second level of the Via Rail station at 123 Main Street, and is open from 9:00AM to 5:00PM on both Saturday, September 16 and Sunday, September 17. Admission by donation.

Saturday, September 09, 2017

Assiniboine Valley Railway holds open house September 9 & 10

The Assiniboine Valley Railway is holding their monthly open house this weekend! They’re open from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday, September 9, and from 1:00PM to 5:00PM on Sunday, August 10. One ride costs two bucks, and you can buy a 12 ride pass for only $20! Children two years of age and under ride for free! All minors must be accompanied by an adult. They're located at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just west of Assiniboine Park. Look for the sign on the road!

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

All aboard for the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club's first event of the season



It's our first event of the season, and it looks like it's going to be a good one! It's also time to renew memberships, and we're always delighted to accept new members! Guests are always warmly welcomed, and there's never any pressure to join, so why not come down to the club and see what it's all about? 

Our September program is a follow-up to last year’s “Computers in Model Railroading” presentation by John Bate. This time the focus is on tiny computers called Arduinos, which  are small embedded processors that can become an integral part of any electrical or electronic system - including a model railroad. You could control a level crossing, build a train speedometer, eavesdrop on your DCC system, or build a complete CTC system with a dispatcher’s console implemented in hardware, or on a computer screen. All of these things will be demonstrated. It requires a little bit of programming, but you will see that this is not nearly as scary as it sounds. 

The fun starts at 7:30PM on Friday, September 8 at the Charleswood Legion, 6003 Roblin Boulevard. We'll also have our monthly model display, so come and see what our members had been working on during the summer!

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Check out these videos from Calgary's South Bank Shore Lines

CNR's vintage 1392, seen here on display at Expo 86 in Vancouver.

Morgan Turney sent us these links, which were sent to him by Calgary's South Bank Shore Lines model railroad club, which Morgan describes as the "Mother club" to Winnipeg's Kildonan Short Lines HO modular group. 

Featured on these links are two videos of the Alberta Prairie Railway Excursions taking the CNR 1392 going from Stettler to Big Valley. One is long, one is short, but both are good watching! 

https://youtu.be/7OfYFvneiIY

https://youtu.be/tsc8ySij13c

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Weathering and Decal workshop to be held at Toad Hall on August 26

Darryl Audette will be hosting a weathering workshop that will also deal with decaling at Toad Hall Toys. The workshop will be held on Saturday, August 26th at 10:30 a.m. There are only 12 spaces available, so if you're interested please give him a call at 204-956-2195.  
Learn about various MIG products, discover techniques and have the opportunity to ask questions and find like-minded folks to chat with. So them a call and get ready to up your modelling game.

If you haven't been to Toad Hall Toys lately to check out their model railroad department, then it's worth the trip! Darryl Audette has taken over the reins, and he's made some terrific changes! 

Toad Hall has been a supporter of the WMRC for many years, and has continued to faithfully advertise in the club's official publication, The Lantern. Every member in good standing receives a 10% discount on all no-sale in-store model railroad items, so be sure to bring your card!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Check out this video of the CP 150 train in Winnipeg!

There has been some marvellous images and videos taken of the CP 150 train when it came to Winnipeg. This includes the above photo, taken by our own Felix Lesiuk, of the train's classic F-units rolling past a beautiful field of sunflowers.

One exceptional video we found was made by some surprisingly young rail fans, who call themselves Trainboy Productions,  who shot the CP 150 train in various locations all around the city. You can watch their video by clicking here.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Assiniboine Valley Railway holds open house August 12 & 13

The Assiniboine Valley Railway is holding their monthly open house this weekend! They’re open from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday, August 12, and from 1:00PM to 5:00PM on Sunday, August 13. One ride costs two bucks, and you can buy a 12 ride pass for only $20! Children two years of age and under ride for free! All minors must be accompanied by an adult. They're located at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just west of Assiniboine Park. Look for the sign on the road!

Saturday, August 05, 2017

Get your decals made at the UPS store on Ellice Avenue

Making your own custom decals using the Testors decal system is very popular, easy, and inexpensive. That is, until you try to print them on a crummy $50 ink jet printer! So, you go to a print shop to print them up for you , but they won't do it because they only have laser printers that will melt the decal paper. Then you look for a printer that uses a high quality ink jet printer and come out empty handed.

Well, here;s some good news, fellow custom decal makers! After an exhaustive search, we've found a place with a high quality ink jet printer that will do it for you, at a very reasonable cost! It's the UPS store #431 at 120-1400 Ellice Avenue. We had some decals printed up there, and the did an excellent job! Check the out by clicking here, or just go to the store yourself and ask for Alex!

Saturday, July 29, 2017

The CP Canada 150 train arrives in Winnipeg this Friday

Mark your calendars! The CP 150 train will be in Winnipeg this Friday, August 4. The train will make a stop at the Southdale Community Centre at 254 Lakewood Boulevard from 5:00PM to 8:00PM. 

CP’s 1401 F-unit, built in 1958, will lead the train, hauling more than 10 restored heritage cars. Children will have the opportunity to take part in decorating a special car named the Spirit of Tomorrow. They can write their hopes for the Canada of tomorrow on a commemorative card. Each card will be attached to the car. The final Spirit of Tomorrow car will be included in CP’s 2017 Holiday Train program.

Included in the train is CP's exclusive stage car where champion Aboriginal hoop dancer Dallas Arcand, Juno award-winning country music singer Dean Brody, country singer Kelly Prescott and the Rail Road Ramblers will be performing.

While you’re there, don’t miss your chance to ride on CP’s miniature train! It’s a 1/4 scale model of one of CP’s AC4400 locomotives.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

The Meadows grain elevator falls


By Morgan Turney
Photos by Felix Lesiuk

The Meadows Paterson grain elevator was turned into a heap of scrap wood on July 18, 2017, just after 12:00 noon. After chewing out the bottom four feet of the elevator footing on the elevator's west side, the contractor wrapped a heavy cable around the elevator cupola and with a few tugs from a large bulldozer, down she came into a heap of lumber and grain dust.

I don't know what it is about the name of Meadows, Perhaps it conjures up memories of a very peaceful place. There isn't much there. A few farms nearby and a homestead just across the street from the Meadows road sign. But it had a Paterson wooden grain elevator, the first one you came across driving westward down Rosser Road.

Rounding a gentle curve just past Rosser, there were two things you could count on seeing. One was an African type tree (it looks like it's from the plains of the Serengeti) in the field on the right hand side of the road. In the distance straight ahead was the Meadows elevator. It served as a familiar landmark to anyone taking the back roads and following the CPR's Carberry subdivision on a rail fan adventure toward Portage la Prairie. Sadly, after July 20, 2017, the African tree is all that's left.

Many of us will miss the Meadows elevator. It was the last one standing on that route after Marquette (another Paterson grain elevator) was pulled down on September 3rd, 2013. 
How sad is it that we destroy our iconic history so willfully, and so thoughtlessly. Meadows is gone forever. All that's left are the photographs and the memories.





Sunday, July 16, 2017

Grain elevator at Meadows, Manitoba being taken down

Our intrepid roving reporter Felix Lesiuk captured these images of the grain elevator at Meadows, Manitoba being taken down. Meadows is on provincial highway 221, in between Marquette and Rosser. Marquette lost its grain elevator four years ago.

It's sad to see another one of these prairie giants leave the landscape. Now that two of these once familiar buildings on the same road will be gone, the road to Marquette is going to be a lot more bleaker.



Monday, July 10, 2017

WinNtrak featured on Shaw TV's TrainTown

WinNtrak's own Gerrit Vanderklok narrates Shaw TV's latest episode of Train Town.

How cool is this? Shaw TV Winnipeg has produced their third episode of Train Town, and this time they're featuring WinNtrak at their new home at the Prairie Dog Central! You can view it by clicking here!

Thursday, July 06, 2017

Ride the Assiniboine Valley Railway this weekend

The Assiniboine Valley Railway is holding another open house this weekend! They’re open from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday, July 8, and from 1:00PM to 5:00PM on Sunday, July 9. One ride costs two bucks, and you can buy a 12 ride pass for only $20! Children two years of age and under ride for free! All minors must be accompanied by an adult. They're located at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just west of Assiniboine Park. Look for the sign on the road!

Monday, July 03, 2017

Ron Einarson becomes a Master Model Railroader

Ron Einarson, seen here displaying at the No. 1 Northern Division's annual train meet in 2015, has just been named Master Model Railroader by the NMRA.

It is with great pride that we announce that our own Ron Einarson has been designated a Master Model Railroader (MMR) by the NMRA. Ron has been a member of the WMRC since 1983, and has been a member of the NMRA for almost as many years. He has also served as superintendent of the No.1 Northern Division  and as the President of NMRA Canada.

Ron is MMR #593. The title of MMR will follow after his name at all NMRA functions and any written material about him. The NMRA presently has over 18,000 members, and in it's entire history there has been only 593 MMR certificates awarded, so this is a rare honour indeed!

The MMR is an achievement program, and each applicant must earn a series of seven certificates for their work before they receive the title. Ron has worked very hard to earn this title, and his modelling work has always spoken for itself. Way to go, Ron!

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Winnipeg Model Railroad Club member gets published by Kalmbach

Long time WMRC member Paul Ullrich has had an article published in the July issue of Classic Toy Trains, a Kalmbach publication. His article, which is about how to model trees using Christmas tree branches, ground foam and hair spray appears on the "Tips, Tools and Techniques" section of the magazine. A picture of a section of his layout was also published with the article.

Paul has been a contributor to Classic Toy Trains since 2002. He has also had two articles published in Trains magazine. He has two more articles pending publication in Classic Toy Trains.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Toad Hall Toys holds model contest

To celebrate their 40th anniversary, Toad Hall Toys is holding a model / miniature contest. Make any model, any miniature, but it must have a "TOAD" in it. The maximum size 10"x 10”.

Finished models will be displayed in their store at 54 Arthur Street until after their birthday celebrations on August 19, 2017. All models will be judged by the England family. The lucky winner will receive a Toad Hall Gift Certificate for $100.


Deadline for entries will be Saturday, July 29th. All displays must be dropped off at Toad Hall Toys on or before that date.For more information, please call Darryl Audette or Dianna Berard at 204-956-2195.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Trains magazine’s June issue features Manitoba railway

How cool is this? Trains magazine has featured a Manitoba short line in its June 2017 issue. The Keewatin Railway, owned and operated by the Mathias Colomb Cree nation, runs a regularly scheduled mixed train from The Pas, Manitoba to Puktawagan. It’s featured on page 22 of the print edition, and a photo gallery has been posted on the Trains.com website, which you can see by clicking here.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Nick Andrusiak honoured at Winnipeg Model Railroad Club's annual banquet

WMRC President Godfrey South presented Fran Andrusiak, who delivered a tribute to her late husband, Nick Andrusiak, at the WMRC’s annual banquet last month. 

The late, great Nick Andrusiak was honoured at the WMRC’s annual banquet and awards ceremony, which was held last month at the Canad Inn at Polo Park. The club created a special award for digital prototype railroad photography in his name. 

Nick’s widow, Fran Andrusiak, gave a moving tribute to her late husband at the banquet and presented the award named after Nick to its first recipient, WMRC secretary Cliff Davidson. 

Fran Andrusiak presented the very first Nick Andrusiak memorial award for digital prototype railroad photography to Cliff Davidson at the club’s annual banquet and awards ceremony.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Portage la Prairie Model Railroad Club to hold open house this Saturday


The Portage la Prairie Model Railroad Club will be holding their annual open house on Saturday, June 17 from 10:00AM to 4:00PM. There will be a barbecue, family friendly model railroad demonstrations and a 50-50 draw. The Portage Model Railroad Club is located at the Canadian Pacific Railway station in Portage La Prairie, Manitoba at 215 street N.E.  The club is a wheelchair accessible facility. 

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Assiniboine Valley Railway holds first open house this weekend

All aboard for the Assiniboine Valley Railway’s first open house of the year! Ride the rails on the AVR this weekend! They’re open from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday, June 10, and from 1:00PM to 5:00PM on Sunday, June 11. 

One ride costs two bucks, and you can buy a 12 ride pass for only $20! Children two years of age and under ride for free! All minors must be accompanied by an adult. 


The AVR is located at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just west of Assiniboine Park. They hold public open houses on the second full weekend of each month from June to October.  

Thursday, June 01, 2017

Gateway Western memories at Doors Open Winnipeg 2017

Everyone had a great time running trains at the Gateway Western Railway in the Winnipeg Railway Museum during Doors Open Winnipeg last weekend! The next time the Gateway will be open to the general public will be during Railway Days in September. Hope to see you all then! All photos by Morgan Turney.





Monday, May 29, 2017

Winnipeg's model railroad and rail fan community mourns passing of Gord Hilderman

Former WMRC member Gord Hilderman lost his battle with cancer on May 22. He would've been 61 in June. 

Gord was a CN engineer, photographer, model railroader, model train dealer, and the brains behind cnrphotos.com. He regularly kept us all up to date with the goings on inside the real railroad industry and the railfan and modelling communities in western Canada. He was also a member for the Selkirk Model Railroaders Association. 


Gord, like his Dad, loved trains and was an avid railroader. In his early years Gord worked briefly as an automotive mechanic and a tow truck operator. He then followed his Dad’s footsteps and joined CN, where he worked for 33 years starting as a yard foreman, then as a conductor and finally as a locomotive engineer. 

Sunday, May 28, 2017

See the Gateway Western Railway today!

These kids really enjoyed watching the trains run at the Gateway Western Railway last year!

The Winnipeg Railway Museum is again participating in Doors Open Winnipeg. The WMRC's Gateway Western Railway, which is housed in the museum, will be open to the public today from 11AM to 5:00PM. The Gateway is Manitoba's largest model railroad display, and it's open to the public only twice a year, so don't miss this opportunity to view it! The Winnipeg Railway Museum is located on the second floor of the Via Rail station at 123 Main Street!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

CP to run special train to celebrate Canada's 150th birthday.

CP has announced that they will be running a train across Canada to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday. The train will be in Winnipeg on Friday, August 4th, from 5:00PM to 8:00PM at the Southdale Community Centre, 254 Lakewood Boulevard. 

The CP F-unit 1401 will lead the train, hauling over 10 CP heritage cars. A highlight at each stop is the opportunity to take part in decorating a special car named the Spirit of Tomorrow. Children can write their hopes for the Canada of tomorrow on a commemorative card. The cards will be attached to the car. This car will be included in CP's 2017 Holiday Train.

Also included in the train is CP's  stage car where Dallas Arcand, champion Aboriginal hoop dancer and Juno award-winning country music singer Dean Brody will be performing.

For more information about the CP Canada 150 train, click here. 

CP has also updated its website to provide a history of the company, which can be accessed by clicking http://cpconnectingcanada.ca/#building-the-railway

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Winnipeg's Rugby Tower dismantled by CP Rail

CP's Rugby tower, a rail fanning favourite for decades, is no more. 

By Morgan Turney

Many fans of this site will know and recognize CPR's Rugby Tower, located at mile 1.9 on CP's Carberry subdivision, just at the west end of CPR's yards off of McPhillips Street, and behind the McPhillips Street Station casino.

Built in 1947 to replace the original wooden structure, Rugby Tower was decommissioned as a control structure for CP trains in and out of Winnipeg on June 1, 2013 and remained standing, but empty. It was a two-story brick building with its' prominent "Rugby" name engraved into the brick and featured a distinctive windsock on a pole that indicated wind direction in case of a hazardous chemical spill in the yards.


On a recent railfanning visit one evening last week to Stanley Knowles Park, which overlooks CP's Weston yards and shops, I noticed that something didn't seem right with the view. That's when I noticed that Rugby Tower was no more! It's gone. Not a brick in sight - only a square of stones where the foundation used to be. Yet another piece of rail history gone forever.

Here's a recent image taken by Morgan Turney of where the Rugby Tower used to stand, taken at almost the same angle as the image above the article. It's ver sad to see that it's not there anymore!

Saturday, May 13, 2017

HO model railroad equipment for sale in Saskatchewan

Roni Evans of Redvers, Saskatchewan has a lot of model railroad equipment to sell.

Her husband, who was a lifelong model railroader, recently passed away. He built a 40’x60’ building to house his hobby. That’s about twice the size of The WMRC’s Gateway Western!

She has found herself in possession of a huge layout and hundreds of pieces of rolling stock and locomotives, many are still in their boxes. There are packing boxes full of all sorts of equipment still in its packages. There are buildings, track, decoders, electronics, almost anything you can imagine! 


If anyone is interested in purchasing any or all of this amazing hoard, her phone number is 306-840-7299, or you can message her on Facebook.

Monday, May 08, 2017

Winnipeg Model Railroad Club to hold annual banquet on May 12

The WMRC is winding up another great season with our Annual General Meeting and Awards Night. This year, it is being held on Friday, May 12, at a new location, at the Canad Inns Polo Park in Alto's Restaurant, which is located at 1405 St. Matthews Avenue. 

Cocktails and dinner (buffet style or order from their menu) will start at 6:00PM, and the AGM will begin at 7:30PM. After the AGM, we’ll have our annual awards presentation.

After the awards presentation, we’ll have plenty of door prizes and “arm's length” raffle ticket prizes (that’s where you buy your arm’s length of tickets) to give out, as well as our now-famous elimination draw! This time the elimination draw will be for an DCC Atlas Classic CPR C424 locomotive with sound and a matching Athearn CPR caboose.

Monday, May 01, 2017

More views of CN's Winnipeg campus

Long time WMRC member Felix Lesiuk took a whole slew of photos of CN's Winnipeg campus when he visited the facility with members of the Winnipeg Railway Museum, which we've posted several times.  But so far, we've only posted images of their model railroad layout. This post features a rare look at many of their other hands-on training tools. Enjoy!