Official Maine Eastern Thread

Discussion about the M&E, RVRR and SIRR lines of New Jersey, and also the Maine Eastern operation in Maine. Official web site can be found here: www.merail.com.

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therudycometh
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by therudycometh » Thu Dec 26, 2013 1:55 pm

We're certainly trying!

It's easy to forget that a railroad, and especially a small shortline railroad like the M&E/MERR, is very much a part of the community it serves - just like the local hardware store or the family-owned grocery store on the corner. All of our employees are members of the communities that our railroad serves, and we want to be able to reach out not only to our employees, but to their families, friends, and neighbors, as well.
- Rudy Garbely
President, The Conrail Historical Society
Media & Communications, Operation Toy Train
President, The Garbely Publishing Company

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MEC407
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by MEC407 » Mon Dec 30, 2013 11:28 am

From the Bangor Daily News:
Bangor Daily News wrote:Maine Eastern Railroad has run the line since 2003. Its contract with the state was set to expire in October 2013 but the company and state reached an agreement to have Maine Eastern continue its operations through December 2014. That would have given the state time to put together a proposal and then review any submissions.

But Nate Moulton, the director of rail programs for the state transportation department, said Friday that no decision has yet been made on whether to seek proposals. He said it remains a topic of discussion by the state.

The transportation official said the state, which owns the line, could grant another year extension to Maine Eastern.
Read the rest of the article at: http://bangordailynews.com/2013/12/29/n ... -railroad/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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therudycometh
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by therudycometh » Thu Jan 23, 2014 9:34 pm

I put up the new ticket office sign in Rockland today, with some assistance from my lovely girlfriend Kate. It was handmade by Keith Bednar of Mehoopany, PA. Some of you may know his brother Mike, a well-known Lehigh Valley Railroad author and veteran.

Image
- Rudy Garbely
President, The Conrail Historical Society
Media & Communications, Operation Toy Train
President, The Garbely Publishing Company

Watchman318
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by Watchman318 » Fri Jan 24, 2014 12:43 pm

^^^ That sign is excellent. You (and Kate) do nice work too, Rudy. :cool:

I can't find links to the specific articles in this week's Lincoln County News, but there were two stories on page 2 of this week's edition that showed some enthusiasm by the selectmen in Wiscasset and Damariscotta for this season's new excursion service. If you go to <http://lincolncountynewsonline.com/index.asp> and type "train" into the Search box, a link to that page should pop up right on top of the results. I think it's a subscription kinda thing.
The Wiscasset bit was just one paragraph, but said "the board expressed excitement" about it. The other article was Damariscotta selectmen voice support for shuttle service. That board's comments were largely positive, but the chairman wants to be sure Newcastle will "pitch in" too.

Watchman318
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by Watchman318 » Fri Jan 24, 2014 12:49 pm

Oh, dang: Train, car collide in West Bath
No one injured

Read more: http://www.wmtw.com/news/train-car-coll ... z2rL5oGIin

Methinks the driver of the truck needs a refresher on what S-T-O-P means.

kilroy
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by kilroy » Fri Jan 24, 2014 1:37 pm

The crash happened where the train tracks cross Sanford Crossing Road.
Who would have ever thought it would occur where the tracks cross the road?

Just say it occurred on Sanford Crossing Road, I'm sure the readers can figure it out.
Why do we drive on parkways and park in driveways?

Watchman318
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by Watchman318 » Fri Jan 24, 2014 2:10 pm

Yeah, but it could have been where the road crosses the track.
Remember, some of the people who are reading that (and some of the ones who write the stuff) are the same ones who believe flashing signals mean "as long as you stop briefly, you can go if you think the train is still far enough away." :rolleyes:

I bet the end of that locomotive looks way better than the left front of that pickup truck.

gokeefe
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by gokeefe » Thu Jan 30, 2014 12:24 pm

An excellent example of another marketing "coup" MERR scored two separate articles in two days in the Boothbay Register:

The first discussed expanded passenger service and the Wiscasset Flyer in particular:
There are better ways to spend the summer in Midcoast Maine than stuck in a Wiscasset traffic jam. There is no easy fix to the infamous Route 1 bottle neck, but big plans are coming down the line.

Starting July 4, the Maine Eastern Railroad will be expanding passenger service to usher more people into the Midcoast region from Amtrak's Downeaster station in Brunswick.

Specifically, the Downeaster will stop in Brunswick regularly on Friday, Saturday and Sunday mornings to connect passengers to the MERR Mid-Coast Limited. In the past 10 years, the railroad service has brought passengers as far as Rockland, but now the service is slated to become more localized.

The Wiscasset Flyer will be the new train offering short 45-minute trips between Bath and Newcastle in an effort to boost tourism and economic development.

“Anything that can offer people another way to get there that's easier and different could be a benefit to the region and obviously the economy through tourism traffic,” said Rudy Garblely, the marketing associate for the MERR.

The MERR is owned by the Maine Department of Transportation and managed by Morristown & Erie Railway out of New Jersey. In 2012 over 5,000 passengers used the MERR, and they are anticipating an increase in ridership.

Garblely said he knows all about the traffic problems in Wiscasset. In fact, when Garblely was trailing the train to shoot a promotional video for the MERR, he said the filming got canceled because a long line of cars on Route 1 prevented him from reaching the train.

Garblely said and he has been working with Wiscasset town officials to make travel in the Midcoast less stressful and more efficient. The long term plans include coordinating ticket sales with Amtrak in Boston's North Station, and upgrading the Wiscasset waterfront with a new train station and parking area.
The second discussed the proceedings of a Town Council meeting in Boothbay which addressed an agenda item in favor of establishing a shuttle between Wiscasset and Boothbay as well as a local circulator on the peninsula.
A summer shuttle service between Wiscasset and the Boothbay peninsula is picking up steam after the Boothbay selectmen unanimously voted to give $2,000 towards the transportation project.

Boothbay Harbor selectmen are also supporting the project. They unanimously agreed to place an article in the upcoming Town Warrant for $2,000, where at the annual town meeting the voters of Boothbay Harbor will vote either in favor or against the project.

On January 22, Bob Faunce from the Lincoln County Regional Planning Commission briefed the Boothbay selectmen on the expanded passenger rail service set to launch in Wiscasset this July.

Since early December there have been discussions with the Maine Eastern Railroad and the Maine Department of Transportation to test a pilot program to draw more people into the Midcoast region, Faunce said.

This summer the Mid-Coast Limited train will be connecting passengers from Brunswick's Amtrak station to the Wiscasset Flyer, a new passenger train offering short round trips between Bath and Newcastle at a reduced price.

Continuing that train of thought, Faunce is looking for approval from MDOT to launch a shuttle and trolley service between Wiscasset and the Boothbay region.

“It seems like the stars have aligned at least for this brief period of time,” Faunce said. “All we need at this point is to figure out what the doable project is and estimate costs.”
gokeefe

Watchman318
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by Watchman318 » Thu Jan 30, 2014 10:45 pm

Might have been nice if they'd spelled Rudy's name correctly. It's kinda the reverse of "I don't care what the newspapers say about me as long as they spell my name right." (Variously attributed to P.T. Barnum and a lot of other people.)

I guess some misspellings are okay, as long as they continue to say nice things about the railroad operation. ;-)

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MEC407
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by MEC407 » Tue Jun 24, 2014 12:01 pm

Photo by Dan Nelson:

http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=486827" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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gokeefe
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by gokeefe » Wed Jun 25, 2014 8:05 am

MEC407 wrote:Photo by Dan Nelson:

http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=486827" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Classic, "only in Maine".
gokeefe

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MEC407
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by MEC407 » Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:04 am

From The Portland Press Herald:
The Portland Press Herald wrote:Maine Eastern Railroad has revamped its summer schedule, and not everyone is happy about it.

The railroad’s Rockland-to-Brunswick excursion train is now connecting for the first time with Amtrak’s Downeaster in Brunswick, and the railroad has launched a second train using Wiscasset as its hub. The vintage 1950s-style train no longer will facilitate day trips to Rockland, which has business owners there concerned about a dropoff in business.
. . .
In Rockland, the change has upset some merchants and restaurant owners because the city is no longer the centerpiece of the railroad’s business model.
. . .
When the train arrives in Rockland, passengers are discouraged from getting off unless Rockland is their destination. Last Friday, for example, 48 passengers arrived, and none left the train.
. . .
It used to bring as many as 200 tourists to Rockland in the middle of the day, and that’s no longer happening, said Gordon Page, who until a year ago worked as an executive of the railroad and now heads Rockland Main Street Inc., a nonprofit that promotes the downtown.

“The feedback I’m getting from downtown business groups is they are disappointed,” Page said.
Read the rest of the article at: http://www.pressherald.com/2014/07/15/e ... direction/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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therudycometh
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by therudycometh » Sun Jul 20, 2014 1:51 pm

MEC407 wrote:From The Portland Press Herald:
The Portland Press Herald wrote: It used to bring as many as 200 tourists to Rockland in the middle of the day, and that’s no longer happening, said Gordon Page, who until a year ago worked as an executive of the railroad and now heads Rockland Main Street Inc., a nonprofit that promotes the downtown.

“The feedback I’m getting from downtown business groups is they are disappointed,” Page said.
Why they insist on quoting a FORMER employee continues to be beyond me.....
- Rudy Garbely
President, The Conrail Historical Society
Media & Communications, Operation Toy Train
President, The Garbely Publishing Company

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MEC407
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by MEC407 » Sun Jul 20, 2014 2:09 pm

My guess is that they quoted him because he's the head of that Rockland promotional organization and not specifically because he's a former employee of the railroad.
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kilroy
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Re: Official Maine Eastern Thread

Post by kilroy » Mon Jul 21, 2014 1:36 pm

I agree with you MEC but I can't help but wonder if there are sour grapes underlying the statements.
Why do we drive on parkways and park in driveways?

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