Trains are an important part of the transportation system in New Jersey and they play a vital role in the history of the state. Located in the Whippany section of Hanover Township in Morris County, the non-profit Whippany Railway Museum is a unique destination that features both a railway museum and excursion train rides. This makes it a great choice for families and groups looking to have an enjoyable day out while learning about the rich railroading history in New Jersey.
The museum offers visitors the opportunity to explore a large collection of rail cars and locomotives. Its exhibitions are well-documented and include all the different equipment that was needed to run a train and how it has changed over the years. It also has some interesting displays that show the transition from railroad cars being used for freight to becoming more of a luxury travel option with items like menus and dining room settings on display.
During their visit, guests can view the largest collection of American-built standard gauge steam locomotives in the state. This includes one of the oldest locomotives in America, Southern Railroad No. 385, which was built in 1907 for fast freight service. They can also see a caboose, which served as the conductor’s office on freight trains, and the old passenger train, the Lackawanna Subscription Car #2454.
In addition to the large number of historic trains and railway cars, Whippany Railway Museum features two operating model railroad layouts, one indoors and one outdoors. They also have a gift shop and snack depot on-site. The outdoor G-scale model railroad is open during the summertime when weather permits.
For a fun family activity, guests can attend “Touch-A-Truck 2 & Train Ride”. This event gives children of all ages the chance to explore working trucks including fire trucks, transport vehicles, construction trucks and public health and safety trucks. They can climb inside the cabs, honk the horns and flash the lights of each vehicle.
The Whippany Railway Museum runs several excursions throughout the year that offer a unique and memorable experience for both young and old. These excursions are powered by vintage trains from the Morristown and Erie Railroad. The train rides give visitors the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful scenery of New Jersey as well as learn about its rich history.
The Polar Express is a live stage production that takes place aboard a slow-moving train, with scripted scenes, singing and dancing. The show is presented by the Whippany Railway Museum and features a variety of characters dressed in costumes. Guests can also take part in the production by volunteering to be part of a cast.
This is a great way for families to get together and celebrate the holidays. There are several different events that take place during the holidays, including visits from the Easter Bunny and a special train ride for kids. These holiday-themed activities are sure to be a hit with everyone in the family.