Have you been to the train at the Roundhouse Community Centre? Somehow, despite my boys’ train-fanaticism, we had missed going. We righted that wrong today! The gleaming black Engine 374 has been beautifully restored and is maintained by the West Coast Railway Association (the folks who run the great train museum up in Squamish).
Kids are encourage to climb on board the train and ring the bell. There is great encouragement for the kids to explore all aspects of the train. Our two boys raced up and down the stairs heaps of times, checked out the coupling rods, and were impressed to discover the wheels were nearly as tall as their not-short-mother.
Around the beautiful brick and glass building are photos showing the history of Engine 374 and Vancouver. The changes in the last 50 years are rather astounding!
While the train is open most every day, the hours fluctuate a little bit as it is run by volunteers. It is worth making a quick call to the Roundhouse Community Centre (press 2 when you hear the main menu) to find out if the volunteer has arrived. We were told the general hours are 9:30 – 3:30 on week days and 10:30 – 3:00 on weekends. Admission is FREE however donations are greatly appreciated!
On the Sunday of the May long weekend, the volunteers roll the train out of the roundhouse, get the steam stack puffing and serve birthday cake (in honour of Queen Victoria). The event starts around 1pm.