The Train Song Festival returns to Poway on Saturday

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Saturday everything will be on board for everything related to trains at Old Poway Park.

The Train Song Festival, sponsored by the San Diego Folk Heritage and the City of Poway, features train rides, a variety of concerts, model trains, and even train flights.

The festival, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., is an opportunity to celebrate the railroads, which have been an important part of America’s heritage, said Dick Jay, president of San Diego Folk Heritage.

Add to that a shared love of songs on the locomotives, and the festival has come together, Jay said.

“There are hundreds of songs on Johnny Cash’s Trains to Whatever You Want,” he said of the event, which has been going on for at least 20 years. “We thought it would be fun to get a group of performers together to do songs on the trains. This is how it happened.

The music begins in the park gazebo at 10 a.m. with the Back Pocket Whiskey Fellas, who will be performing at the event for the first time. At 11 a.m., award-winning and original local favorite Enter the Blue Sky will play.

Cowboy Jack will take the stage at noon with classic country, followed by international star and acoustic blues master Nathan James.

At 2 p.m., Trails & Rails will share their knowledge of American music and history. And to close the show, the Hot Pstromi trio with the Klezmer-inspired violin of Yale Strom from the San Diego Hall of Fame.

In addition to the music, there will be model railroads in the Great Hall, train flights and the Nelson House will be open for tours. Visitors can ride the 1907 steam engine for a small fee or browse handcrafted items at the Boardwalk Craft Market.

“For a few dollars you can buy a ride in the park,” Jay said of the steam engine.

Organizers are delighted to return after being unable to host the event last year due to the pandemic. The show has been a staple in Poway, except in 2019 when the event name was changed to “Workin ‘on the Railroad”.

“It’s been a long time since we’ve been able to do something like this,” Jay said.

Free entry. Masks are encouraged. Seating and shade will be provided, Jay said.

“Go down and bring the kids and sit down and listen to some music,” he said. “We’re going to have a good time. “

As for Jay, what’s his favorite train song?

“Everyone loves the ‘City of New Orleans.’ If I had to pick a favorite, it would be this one, ”he said.

Old Poway Park is at 14134 Midland Road,


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