Indiana Bicentennial Train Visits Bargersville
Local Volunteers Needed to Help With School Groups & Guest Experience
Writer / Amy Lamb
The Indiana Historical Society (IHS) will bring the Indiana Bicentennial Train to Bargersville Oct. 9-11 as part of its 2014 run. A unique collaboration with The Indiana Rail Road Company and Norfolk Southern Corporation, the Bicentennial Train will also visit Columbus (Sept. 18-20), Jasper (Sept. 25-27) and Terre Haute (Oct. 2-4) this fall.
Originally known as the Indiana History Train, the Indiana Bicentennial Train has welcomed more than 71,000 visitors in its six years of travel. It consists of three 65-foot renovated Amtrak freight cars and features a free traveling exhibition, The Next Indiana.
Relying heavily on IHS’s extensive visual and archival collections, The Next Indiana occupies all three freight cars. The first car explores Indiana’s early history through 1900, the second covers the 20th century and the third prompts thought about the state as it is today and might be in the future. Visitors are encouraged to look at where Hoosiers have been, how they got there and where they are going through the lenses of transportation, land use, talent and community.
In addition to the exhibition, temporary “depots” are set up at each venue to provide an enjoyable, comprehensive experience. Visitors can participate in hands-on and educational activities, catch a 1916 interpreter presentation, connect with the mission and offerings of the Indiana Historical Society, and purchase items from a pop-up History Market.
The Bicentennial Train and its accompanying activities are all free and open to the public, operating 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. Every visitor will receive a complimentary pass to visit IHS’s Indiana Experience at the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana History Center.
Local volunteers are a vital part of the daily operations of the Bicentennial Train, as they help with crowd control, school groups, parking and more. More than 150 volunteer shifts are available during the Bargersville stop, with three time slots available each day. There will be a meeting for Bargersville volunteers Tuesday, September 2, at 6 p.m. in the Bargersville Municipal Building.
Volunteers are welcome to sign up for either individual time slots or full days. IHS will host a volunteer recruitment and training meeting in late August/early September at the Bargersville Municipal Building. Volunteers can also sign up at IndianaHistory.org/Train. For more information, contact Amanda Aird at 317-234-7640 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 2014 Indiana Bicentennial Train is presented by the Indiana Historical Society and sponsored by The Indiana Rail Road Company and Norfolk Southern Corporation, in partnership with the Indiana Bicentennial Commission. The Bicentennial Train will run each fall for two more years, culminating with the state’s bicentennial in 2016.
Group reservations (including schools) are available at no charge on a first-come, first-served basis by calling 317-232-1882 (space is limited). For more information on the Indiana Bicentennial Train and other IHS programs, visit IndianaHistory.org.