2019 marks the 178th year since the railroad was opened.
There will be a massive parade, Civil War, Blacksmith demos, Hand hewn woodworking demo, and early Irish railroad re-enactors from Storrowton Village, will be on the north lawn of the station. A train show will be in the station, and commemorative envelopes and historic stamps with a special postal cancellation.
State Police K-9 demo, Steam Train Derby, Bounce House, Petting Zoo Garden Tractor pulls, Sand Art and other amusements will be in full swing at the ballfield on Emery St.
A craft fair, face painting and ‘one-lung’ steam & gas engine demos will be along Main St and on the lawn of the Chester Inn. Also on the Chester Inn front porch will be live music throughout the day by the group, ‘Just Us’.
Classic cars from Model ‘T’s to the newest Corvettes will line up on Maple St., where kids can visit the and be entertained by Nicole the Railroad Clown, formerly of Ringling Bros. Circus.
The railroad station outdoor stage will host music by the Pitoniak Bros., Pioneer Valley Fiddlers, Dogwalker, and an open jam session by a number of local musicians during the afternoon. The Pioneer Valley Live Steamers will display their large scale operating steam and diesel locomotives and a selection of rolling stock on the station’s south lawn.
The Hamilton Memorial Library will hold a Book and Bake Sale on the lawn, and the Library’s Chester Mineral Collection will be open for tours with John Marge from 10 AM to 1 PM. The Chester Historical Commission will be on hand at the Old Jail for tours from 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM.
The Cornerstone Church will be open for lunch, A&L Market will be open all day, and the Foundation’s own Blue Caboose will open at 8 AM for breakfast and have a hearty railroad man’s menu throughout the day, where you can eat ‘hobo style’ in an antique wooden boxcar.
A number of 1920’s-era freight cars, including the 100 year old wooden caboose and ‘Children’s Boxcar’ will be open to the public. The Fire Dept. will hold their annual Duck Race on the Westfield River at 3:00 PM.
Visitor’s can hike to the first American cluster of stone arch RR bridges on the first MA Wild & Scenic River the Westfield. Tour an archeological stone works, enjoy historic displays & more! FREE (donations accepted) Partially funded through a grant by the Chester Cultural Council, a local agency, through Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.
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