Ride the rails before fireworks this July Fourth CENTRAL -- Union Mills * Westminster * Sandymount * Finksburg


June 28, 1993|By CINDY PARR

The biggest holiday of the summer is coming this weekend and the red, white and blue, those wonderful colors of freedom, will be out in full force.

That's right -- Sunday is Independence Day, when barbecues, reunions and other outdoor activities are typically the focus of family celebrations.

If all this sounds like a lot of work, consider letting someone or something else provide the entertainment for your family's Independence Day celebration.

For the first time ever, the folks on the EnterTRAINment Line will be running a Fourth of July train known as the Firecracker Limited, and they want you to be a part of their holiday excursion.

"We tried to think about what we could do that would go along with this holiday, and we came up with this train ride," said Jerry Pilcher, co-owner of the EnterTRAINment Line.

"We've started a few new things this summer, and this ride is just one of those little unique things that people can go out and do with their families," he said.

Leaving Westminster at 5 p.m. Sunday, the Firecracker Limited will transport its guests westward on a 3 1/2 -hour trip through the scenic Carroll County countryside.

Highlighting the holiday ride will be a dinner buffet featuring roast beef, seasoned ham, summer salads, ambrosia fruit salad, cake, ice cream, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.

Upon return to the Westminster station, motor coaches will take riders to and from the Carroll County Farm Museum for its annual fireworks demonstration.

Mr. Pilcher, who purchased the EnterTRAINment Line with two others in February, said this is a unique holiday train linking riders with two special county attractions.

"We do the Easter Bunny train and the Christmas train, and we wanted to do something special that would go along with this FTC holiday," Mr. Pilcher said.

"We began to meet with the people at the Farm Museum, and they were very supportive and eager to see something like this go off," he said.

"We are hoping that it appeals to enough people around here so we can make it an annual event."

Dottie Freeman, administrative marketing specialist for the Carroll County Farm Museum, said the cooperative event should be an interesting addition to the annual holiday celebration.

"EnterTRAINment is very popular, and I believe that connecting these two county attractions will be exciting," Ms. Freeman said.

"Traffic is always hampered getting to the fireworks, and this way people will not have to drive to the Farm Museum," she said.

"I think it will be great."

The Firecracker Limited will be able to accommodate at least 160 people for the train ride and buffet.

Mr. Pilcher said there is a possibility more seats could be sold for the dinner train.

"We are working on an additional railroad car that could increase our capacity by 60 people. If this is ready, we will offer the additional seating for the Firecracker Limited train," Mr. Pilcher said.

The cost of the package -- train ride, dinner buffet and transportation to and from the Farm Museum -- is $41 for adults and $15.20 for children under 12.

For more information, call 875-2814.


As an alternative, you could take the family to the county's most popular tourist attraction, the Carroll County Farm Museum.

The Farm Museum opens its gates at noon Sunday and will host a flurry of family activities for the Fourth.

Bring your picnic baskets or treat yourself to a full menu of food and desserts available all day on the museum's grounds.

A volleyball marathon, old-time family games, a Victorian tea, wagon rides, a human trivia challenge and farmhouse tours will provide plenty of diversions for adults and children.

Live musical entertainment will be offered throughout the day.

A 20-minute laser light show presented by Advanced Entertainment Technologies will take place before the Westminster Jaycees end the evening with their annual fireworks demonstration.

General admission is $3; $2 for seniors over 60. Children under 12 admitted free.

For more information, call 876-2667.

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