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Sacramento Southern Dinner Train
www.trainweb.com/news/981113.html

The Sacramento Southern Dinner Train inaugurated service today, Friday, the 13th of November 1998. Photographs and other information is featured about this event.

Ray Burns and I were heading up to the Saturday meeting of RailPAC, so we decided to come up a day early to participate in this inaugural event.

Everything turned out fantastic! After boarding the train we passed through two high-level dining cars and then passed through one lounge car before settling into the second lounge car. The interior of each car had been totally restored and was quite impressive. I was told that these cars were standard width, but the interior was so open that it gave the illusion of being much wider than a regular passenger car.

We had to go up three or four steps once we went into the Dining Car. The booths had very high backed seats and the windows were the largest that I had ever seen on any train!

The service on the train was superior and the food was exceptional! If you plan to be in the Sacramento area on a Friday or Saturday night, I'd strongly suggest that you take in this experience. Or, if you are in town on a Sunday morning, make reservations for their Sunday Brunch. This experience is worth a special outing, even if you weren't planning on taking a trip to Sacramento!

The Sacramento Southern Dinner Train leaves from the bottom of "I" Street, right by the turntable at the California State Railroad Museum in Old Sacramento. You can call (916) 323-3035 for reservations.

Below are some of the photographs that we took of this event. Since it was already dark when this even started, photographs of the outside of the train did not turn out very well. The photographs of the train interior and people on the train turned out fine.


This is the bar area of the second lounge car.


This is the interior of the second lounge car.


Euderves being set up in the lounge car.


Kevin Bunker, Archive Staff, California State Railroad Museum Foundation.


Euderves in the lounge car.


Julia Pellizzer, Railroad Baroness, Virginia City Rail Corp, www.vcrail.com.


Paul Hammond, Marketing Director, and Sarah McClaren from the California State Railroad Museum Foundation.


Kevin Bunker, Archive Staff, and Sarah McClaren from the California State Railroad Museum Foundation.


Jan Decker, Executive Director of the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau.


Paul Hammond, Marketing Director of the California State Railroad Museum Foundation.


Ray Burns of TrainWeb, who took most of the photographs on this page, can be seen in his own reflection in the mirror!


Conductors on the Sacramento Southern Dinner Train.


Bruce Heard and Gil Mallory, President of Amtrak West.


Sarah McClaren and Cheryl Meyer, Membership Director of the California State Railroad Museum Foundation.


Servers Chris & Teri on the Sacramento Southern Dinner Train.


Gil Mallory, President of Amtrak West and Bruce Heard. Teri, one of the servers on the Sacramento Southern Dinner Train can also be seen in the background.


Al Seggar, Executive Chef at the Skills & Business Education Center of Sacramento, California. In the background can be seen Cathy Taylor, Executive Director of the California State Railroad Museum Foundation.


Al Seggar, Executive Chef, again. Ray Burns of TrainWeb and Al Seggar conversed in French at our table. Al explained to us that the servers on the Dinner Train were his students from the Skills & Business Education Center of Sacramento. Both the food and the service were excellent!


By the time we left the train, it had become quite dark outside. Even with a flash, this picture of the crew didn't come out very well.

Click here

for the complete set of photographs taken on the Sacramento Southern Dinner Train. If you were on this inaugural train on Friday, November 13th, 1998, then you might find your photo in this set! If you see your photo, send e-mail to steve@trainweb.com and let me know your name and company. I'll add that information to the photo.

SACRAMENTO SOUTHERN RAILROAD DINNER TRAIN
Welcome Aboard!
1998 Trainmaster Reception
About Tonight's Train

The two high-level dining cars on the Sacramento Southern Dinner Train have long and interesting histories. Like most pre-Amtrak passenger cars, they have served more than one owner. Built by Pullman in 1955 for Southern Pacific's San Francisco-San Jose Peninsula commuter trains, they remained in Bay Area operation into the late 1970s and early 1980s. In this service the cars ere known as "gallery" coaches, because of a unique bi-level arrangement with seating on two levels surrounding an open, central gallery.

The adjoining "Golden Gate" lounge car on the Sacramento Southern Dinner Train has its roots in California as well. Originally a coach, it dates to 1938, when it was completed by the Edward G. Budd Company of Philadelphia for the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway. Completely rebuilt and last operated in Oregon in 1990, all three cars were recently given a facelift and moved to California's capital city. They will serve as the regular consist of the Sacramento Southern Dinner Train, offering Friday and Saturday dinner and Sunday brunch trips departing from Old Sacramento.

Joining tonight's train to provide additional before-dinner seating for guests is Southern Pacific "French Quarter" lounge No. 291, once a fixture on SP's flagship L.A.-New Orleans Sunset Limited passenger train. Built by Budd as one of five identical cars in 1950, No. 291's original stainless-steel exterior was painted in SP "Daylight" colors in the 1980s. Last used in Southern Pacific executive train service, the car was recently donated to CSRM by the Union Pacific Railroad. No. 291's highly stylized interior retains its as-delivered appearance, based on New Orleans' famous neighborhood.

Tonight's locomotives are typical of those that will be seen pulling regular Sacramento Southern Dinner Trains. Southern Pacific No. 6051, resplendent in striking orange-and-red "Daylight" colors, was completed in 1954 by General Motors' Electro-Motive Division. In its heyday, this model E-9A diesel pulled SP's premier passenger trains from Los Angeles, including the Coast Daylight (to San Francisco), Golden State (to Chicago), and Sunset Limited (to New Orleans). Western Pacific No. 913, an EMD model F-7A diesel locomotive, went in service in 1950 pulling the railroad's premier Oakland-Chicago California Zephyr streamliner. Operated by WP in freight service until 1980, No. 913 was donated to CSRM the following year.

The Sacramento Southern Dinner Train is operated by the California State Railroad Museum Foundation, a nonprofit, public-sector corporation, in cooperation with the Sacramento Southern Dinner Train Service. Proceeds from brunch and dinner trains support exhibits and programs of the California State Railroad Museum, a part of California State Parks. Join us in Old Sacramento on Friday and Saturday evenings for Dinner, Sunday mornings for Brunch.

For Sacramento Southern Dinner Train Reservations, Call (916)323-3035.

Museum Members receive a 10% discount on Sacramento Southern Dinner Train reservations.
For information about membership and its many benefits, call (916)322-8485 or visit www.csrmf.org.

111 "I" STREET SACRAMENTO, CA 95814
PHONE 916/322-8485 FAX 916/445-5982
e-mail:csrmf@csrmf.org website:www.csrmf.org

Operated by the California State Railroad Museum Foundation
in cooperation with the Sacramento Southern Dining Service.


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