The Illinois Railway Museum has added a series of unique and immersive experiences to the 2019 Diesel Days event. Museum visitors will be able to ride in the cab of a diesel engine during a trip over the museum’s demonstration railroad, experiencing the sights and sounds of a full-sized locomotive from the engineer’s perspective. The museum is also offering Take the Throttle opportunities, where visitors will be able to actually be the engineer of a diesel locomotive and operate the locomotive under the supervision of one of the museum’s certified engineers. These opportunities have never before been offered during this event, nor has such a variety of diesel motive power been available for the public to ride.
Cab rides will be offered for a variety of different locomotives over the three days of the Diesel Days event. Participants will get an engineer’s-eye-view of train operations on one of the busiest museum railroads in the country including a close look at the Automatic Block Signal system. Participants will be right in the locomotive cab, seeing how the controls work, observing the engineer up close, and feeling the locomotive as it accelerates. Cab ride tickets are extremely limited, with only two tickets available for each trip, and are expected to sell out in advance of the event.
Take the Throttle opportunities will be offered all three days of the Diesel Days event on a different locomotive each day. Participants will have the opportunity of operating one of the museum’s preserved locomotives back and forth over a one-mile course. The session will include instruction on how to operate the locomotive, with most of the time taken by actual running back and forth over the course. Only 20 sessions per day are scheduled so availability is very limited.
All funds raised from the sale of Cab Ride and Take the Throttle tickets will go directly to the preservation of internal combustion locomotives at the Illinois Railway Museum. For more information see the Diesel Days event page at www.irm.org/event/diesel-days