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Manassas  Railway  Festival - Over The Years





Photo by D. Droppa

Earlier Years

The annual Manassas Railway Festival is centered around the former Southern Railway passenger station in downtown Manassas, Va.  A station has existed in this area since the original rail line was constructed by the Orange & Alexandria RR.  The station has been completely restored and re-dedicated as a Visitor Center while continuing to serve as a passenger station for Amtrak and the Virginia Railway Express (VRE).  This railroad heritage is celebrated on the first Saturday of June each year.  The Piedmont Railroaders support the festival on several levels.  VRE provides a locomotive through which we conduct public tours.  Club members also volunteer to provide a railroad history narration during the excursion trips.

Piedmont  Railroaders
Photo by Bill Lee
Our first module show was the 1995 Manassas Railway Festival. Historic Manassas provided us with a tent set up behind the station under which we operated our HO scale modular model railroad layout.  As you can see the Modules were few and low on scenery. We had to start somewhere and all had a good time.
Photo by Bill Lee
Over time the quantity and quality of our modules improved with each front facing module now having scenery.


Virginia  Railway  Express
Locomotive tours are one of the more popular activities. The crowd queues up at VRE locomotive #V22 for a tour of the cab conducted by the Piedmont Railroaders.
Photo by Bill Lee
The hourly VRE excursion trains are very popular with the public.
Photo by Bill Lee,
Buckingham  Lining  Bar  Gang
Photo by Ralph Douglas
The Buckingham Lining Bar Gang is a group you just don't want to miss as they demonstrate the manual method of aligning track previously used by railroads. 

Norfolk  Southern
Norfolk Southern has provided their exhibit car open for public tours several times.
Photo by Bill Lee
Norfolk Southern has also provided locomotive #4610 in Southern livery for display.  The locomotive bore a plaque dedicating it to the Southern Railway engineers.
Photo by Ralph Douglas

Photo by Jim Law
 Amtrak has also participated in the festival.
Photo by Jim Law
 Superliner cars from the Amtrak Cardinal equipment set were open for public tours.

The quality of the show just keeps getting better every year. The Harris Pavilion provides shelter from the sun and rain for several of the model train displays. From November to April it is used as an ice skating rink.

Photo by City of Manassas
The Piedmont Railroaders model display is only one of several displays set up by the local train clubs.
Photo by D. Droppa,

NS 611 stopped for a few minutes before moving on it's way.

Photo by D. Droppa

Civil War re-enactors were also an important part of the weekend's events at the Manassas Museum
Photo by D. Droppa

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Page last updated July 2010

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