Cleveland railroad and train enthusiasts and those who just like to have fun have a treat in store for them at the family-friendly Dennison Railroad Festival (being held June 3-6) in Dennison, Ohio. Dennison is 94 miles from Cleveland and it is approximately a 1.5 hour drive.
Dennison Railroad Festival Celebrating the town’s industrial history, the 36th annual Dennison Railroad Festival will be held in the Historic Center Street District around the gazebo and the Historic Railroad Depot Museum.
Activities at the 4-day Dennison Railroad Festival include a train exhibit, a hometown talent show, a 5 mile run, a pedal tractor pullers contest, a queen pageant, amusement rides and a parade (being held on Saturday, June 6 at 5 p.m.) and there will be plenty of tasty food available for purchase. And be sure to check out the Salvation Army Donut Day event at the Museum on Friday, June 5 from 8 a.m. – 10 p.m.
There will also be performances by cloggers and square dancers and live musical entertainment provided by a variety of bands. To extend the celebration, there will be a Car Show on Sunday, June 7 starting at noon.
There will also be a barbecue chicken cookout sponsored by the Dennison Volunteer Firemen being held June 4 – 6.
And make sure to pay a visit to the Dennison Railroad Depot Museum. Founded in 1864 as a water stop for the railroad, the city of Dennison is located exactly 100 miles from Columbus and 100 miles from Pittsburgh, the distance the steam engines could travel before having to take on coal, water and a change of crews. By the start of the 20th century, Dennison had become one of the most complete railroad yards in the U.S. doing booming business.
However, times changed and the last passenger train service stopped in 1968 and the last freight train stopped in Dennison in 1982.
Today, Dennison Depot, built in 1873 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is now a museum celebrating Dennison’s glory days and its contribution to railroading history.
The museum has exhibits on the history of the railroad yard and Dennison’s golden age. In the Children’s Wing, visitors can climb into a caboose, use binoculars to view trains in the model train room, send a telegraph message to the railroad tower, explore the engine room, ticket office and watchman’s shanty and try a Pullman bunk bed.
In another wing, guests can see a real steam locomotive, freight cars and passenger cars, including a rare hospital car.
The midway at the Dennison Railroad Festival opens at 5 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and at noon on Saturday. Admission is free but there is a charge for admission to the Dennison Railroad Depot Museum to see their exhibits.
For more information about the Dennison Railroad Festival, call 740-922-6776 or 877-278-8020 or get online at www.dennisonrailroadfestival.org.
The Dennison Railroad Depot Museum is located at 400 Center St. in Dennison, Ohio. It is approximately a 90 minute drive from Cleveland.