Locomotive joins Miami's Railroad Park

Committee members Tina Waldner and Heather Imrie with the Miami-Thompson Line train, originally from The Forks in Winnipeg. The train sits in Miami's newly opened Railroad Park. (LAUREN MACGILL, Morden Times)

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Miami celebrated the opening of their Railroad Park with a fundraising BBQ for their new locomotive.

“It’s a great addition,” committee member Heather Imrie said. “This green space next to the camp ground has been empty for years, so we’re hoping we can attract some families to our campground now.”

A major draw to the Railroad Park is a new accessible train, dubbed the Miami-Thompson line, that functions as a playground for kids.

The train was originally part of the Variety Heritage Adventure Park at The Forks in Winnipeg. When The Forks made some changes to their park, the train was moved to J&D Penner for refurbishing.

Imrie met a representative from the company at the Association of Manitoba Municipalities (AMM) convention last November.

“She asked us what our theme was for our town, and I said of course it’s railroad,” Imrie said. “She said she thought she might have something we’d be interested in.”

Imrie and others from Miami formed a committee and worked quickly to get the train to town before summer started so the kids could enjoy it.

The train arrived two weeks ago, and kids from the area have already been playing on it.

“The day it arrived, it came on a flatbed trailer and arrived in town about the same time as all the school buses,” Imrie said. “We had a lot of excited kids that day. Until we got the platform on and the gravel down we had to rope it off, we couldn’t let the kids play on it for a whole week. They were excited to get on it.”

Money from the BBQ on May 17 will go toward park expenses. The committee is trying to raise $50,000.