Monday, January 12, 2015

The Railroad Museum, Sioux City will be Participating in Upcoming Model Railroad Shows

The Railroad Museum, Sioux City rail yard complex may be closed to the public until March 1st, but it doesn't mean we are not actively working. As a matter of fact we will be taking the show on the road, so to speak, and will be participating in two upcoming regional model train shows.  We will have a large number of gift shop items for sale, single and family annual membership passes will be available (this is a VERY cost effective way to visit us multiple time throughout the year), and information and videos to watch and learn about this wonderful historic railway complex.  Please stop by our tables and visit with us we'd love to talk with you and answer any questions that you may have.

Saturday & Sunday
January 24th & 25th
10 am - 4 pm both days
Mid America Center
Council Bluffs, Iowa

Saturday & Sunday
Feburary 28th and March 1st
10 am - 4 pm both days
Sponsored by the Sioux City Cosmopolitian Club
Sgt Bluff Community Center
Sgt. Bluff, Iowa

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Santa's Final Whistle Stop Tour is This Saturday, Dec. 20th

If you have missed your visit with Santa this year or forgot to tell him earlier about that little extra someting you may be hoping for. You have one more chance to visit with him this Satuday Dec 20th. Santa will arrive via a 1913 built wood caboose pulled by a 1943 built diesel locomotive at 12:30 PM and he will depart just 3 hours later at 3:30 PM the same way he arived via the 101 year old wood caboose. Admission to the Railroad museum is free for this special event.

What is there to do? Take a look.

Car Shops building: Visit Santa and have your picture taken with him. If you don't have a camera we have a photograher that will take your picture and print it out on the spot for only $5.00. Also, we have kids activities for the kids to make popcile stick Christmas tree ornaments and Santa's Elf's construction paper hats. There is also our volunteers sponsored Bake Sale. 100% of the money raised at the bake sale goes into our Building fund to continue the restoration efforts of this 1917 built railroad locomotive and railcar repair facility. Just outside of the Car Shops building is one our friends selling funnel cakes, hot dogs and other hot tasty treats.

Civil Engineering Display Hall - While we are still working on the design and building of our railroad Civil Engineering displays it doesn't mean the building is not busy. We have 3 operating model railroads in O, HO, and N scale that are in varoius stages of completion for you to enjoy and discuss with our volunteers. Maybe you can take home some tips on how to build your own railroad empire at home.

Outdoor Stage - Here you can take your picture with some Christmas settings or go around back and throw snowballs at some snowmen.

The Roundhouse - Explore Sioux Cities pride and joy Great Northern (GN) Railway steam locomotive #1355. Take a tour of the cab and ring the bell on this beautiful locomotive from the romantic rail travel days of the past. This is the sole surviving locomotive of the Class H-5  steam locomotives of the GN. It is also historically signicant to the industrial history of the United States. It is listed on the National Register of Historic places. You can also visit the gift shop for the rail fan in your life. And of special note; have a seat in the orange Milwuakee Road caboose sitting in Bay 3 at 1:00, 2:00, or 3:00 for your own personnal reading of the book the Polar Express by none other than the train conductor from the Polar Express itself!  Do you believe?

Are you getiing tired of walking? You can take a free ride on our hay rack ride and see the railyard or try out our motor car winter express ride for only $1.00 each. This 10 minute ride is our version of a good old fashioned horse and sleigh ride (without the horse and sleigh). It's a great way to have fun, and get a geat big family cuddle going to stay warm.

This is a lot of fun for the entire family. We have had 1,700 visitors so far the past 2 Saturadays so don't miss out!

WEATHER ADVISORY:  Many of the buildings are still under restoration  and some have little to no heat in them so please dress appropriatley for the outside weather conditons.

Monday, December 1, 2014


Here are some pictures from last years visit. We are excited to see you.
 Santa and the Polar Express Conductor are waiving at the cars
passing by on Iowa Hwy 12 as they approach the Railroad
Museum's roundhouse complex located on the north end
of the Riverside neighborhood in Sioux City, Iowa

 A crowd of visitors greet Santa and the Polar Express Conductor
as the arrive at the Milwaukee Railroad Shops Historict District
roundhouse located at the Railroad Museum, Sioux City, Iowa 
 The Polar Express Conductor reading from the book The Polar Express
to a bunch of eager listeners both young AND young at heart.
Our 1943 General Electric diesel engine and 1913 Northern Pacific
wood caboose are all decked out in Christmas cheer awaiting
the arrival of Santa and the Polar Express Conductor.
 Santa waiting for the girls and boys to file in and have a talk.

Excited and eager childern are axiously waiting in line to see Santa.
Most of the buildings have little or no heat so please dress
appropiately for the weather of the day. 

Our wonderful volunteers have been baking their fingers off to help
save you a little time this holiday season. Stop by the Bake Sale tables
and pick up some holiday goodness for your family or business get togethers.
100% of the money raised goes directly into the building fund to continue our
restoration efforts of these railway shop buildings that were originally built in 1917.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Halloween at the Roundhouse is now two Saturdays long!

Save the date(s) it's almost here! The best, free, Fall family event in Siouxland is now on two Saturdays and is 6 hours long each day.  We can't wait to see you! Spread the word!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Touch a Truck or Train Event is this Saturday Oct. 4th

The first annual Touch-a-Truck-or-Train community event will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., this Saturday, October 4, in the rail yard of the Milwaukee R...ailroad Shops Historic District in Sioux City.

General admission to the event is $10 per family. Bring the entire family out and enjoy sitting in these trucks, trains and vehicles; learning about what they do, how they work, and how they benefit our community.

Name a child who wouldn’t love to climb aboard a fire truck, big rig, or train engine! Touch-a-Truck or Train provides a unique opportunity for children to explore vehicles of all types – public service, emergency, utility, construction, military, railroad transportation, delivery, and just plain cool – all in one place.

The Milwaukee Railroad Shops Historic District, home of the community’s landmark Ironhorse steam locomotive, will be celebrating Touch-a-Truck-or-Train with railroad demonstrations, helicopter landing and takeoff, and the exhibition of transportation-related vehicles. This mini transportation expo will allow kids and adults to sit inside, touch, and learn all about vehicles and train equipment they usually don’t have the opportunity to be up close with. Vehicle drivers and operators will be on hand to educate the public about their vehicles and its importance to the world of work.

Event vehicles will vary from a semi-tractor rig to diesel railroad locomotive. There will be a large tow truck displayed by Meier Towing, a semi-tractor rig exhibited by I State Freightliner, a police car demonstrated by the Sioux City Police Department, and a Fire Truck shown by Sioux City Fire Rescue. Other Siouxland businesses and agencies will have a variety of vehicles on hand for kids and adults to explore, including the Mercy Air Care Helicopter, a Siouxland Paramedics Ambulance, and military vehicles from the Army Reserve. Travel Plus Limousine will exhibit their Trolley Bus and a limousine, and GCC Ready Mix will display a cement mixer.

Railroad equipment displays will include the outdoor exhibition of Sioux City’s Landmark Steam Locomotive, a restored wood Northern Pacific Caboose, a railroad center cab diesel locomotive, and the 400 truck used by railroads in the repair of rail cars.

During the event, there will be two railroad demonstrations involving the switching and movement of equipment. At 10 a.m., the Railroad Museum will pull the steam locomotive and wood caboose out of the roundhouse and position the historic equipment for outdoor exhibition. At 3:15 p.m., the equipment will be returned to the roundhouse. During both movements, there will be a turntable demonstration.

Touch-a-Truck-or-Train is a community event that allows families to take photos near railroad equipment and other transportation vehicles in a safe environment. Families and amateur photographers are welcomed to Bring Your Own Digital Device to pose and photograph family members near the train, truck or vehicle displays. This unique opportunity will allow parents and grandparents to dress children in railroad attire and pose them next to Sioux City’s landmark steam locomotive and other railroad equipment in an outdoor setting; using the sun and the backdrop of the historic buildings, rail yard, train displays, and the Loess Hills Bluffs to help frame your photos.

The Milwaukee Railroad Shops Historic District is located adjacent to the Big Sioux River and Loess Hills National Scenic Byway in Sioux City’s north Riverside area along Iowa State Highway 12. Built in 1917-1918, the Milwaukee Railroad Shops Historic District is one of the largest remaining steam locomotive-servicing facilities in the Midwest. The 31.5-acre site consists of a roundhouse with turntable, machine/blacksmith shop building, car/carpenter shop building, sand drying house with wood sand tower, engineer’s tool shed and a water closet building. This historic site also contains eighteen other historical remnants, including foundations of the water tower, boiler house and coaling tower.

Touch-a-Truck-or-Train Event Schedule

10:00 a.m. Railroad Switching and Shunting Demonstration – pulling out of steam locomotive and wood caboose from roundhouse building

1:00 p.m. Landing of Mercy Air Care Helicopter – exhibited until 2:30 p.m.

2:30 p.m. Take off of Mercy Air Care Helicopter

1:00 p.m. Arrival of Fire Truck and Military Vehicles – exhibit until 3:00 p.m.

3:15 p.m. Railroad Switching and Shunting Demonstration – returning of steam locomotive and wood caboose inside the roundhouse building

Thursday, September 4, 2014


The Railroad Museum Sioux City is now in the process of gauging interest and planning for our inaugural “Touch a Truck or Train” Transportation Expo to be held on Saturday, October 4, 2014 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

We are seeking local busin...ess, public agencies or organizations that would be willing to display their big rig trucks, construction equipment, or military vehicles for the public to view, climb aboard, and blow the horn. Please see the attached information; which is displayed as a picture file.

If you are associated with or know of a company or organization that would be interested in participating, please send an e-mail along with your contact information to to request a copy of the letter and flyer. We would welcome the opportunity to discuss how we may partner together to make this event happen.

We would like to have about 50 big rig trucks, tow truck, military vehicles, vintage trucks, construction equipment, etc. on display with our railroad locomotives and rolling stock. Please read the attached image files for more information.

We are also looking for financial contributions to help with underwriting the event costs. If you would like to help sponsor the event, please e-mail asking for sponsorship information.

Thank you.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

12th Annual Ag-Rail Heritage Festival is Almost Here!

Want to exhibit your vintage iron (tractor), truck, or classic car at Ag-Rail?
Contact the Railroad Museum's executive director, Matt Merk, for more information.                         E-mail