611's 2017 excursion schedule announced

ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - The Virginia Museum of Transportation released the Norfolk & Western Class J 611 steam passenger locomotive's 2017 schedule on Wednesday.

Today, the 611 is the only Class J still in existence and is owned by the VMT.

In January, 611 will undergo maintenance in preparation for its annual Federal Railway Administration inspection. Following that work, public excursions behind 611 on the Norfolk Southern system will begin. A variety of seating options, including coach, parlor class, and dome cars are planned for each excursion. 611's EXCURSION SCHEDULE

On April 22 and 23, full-day trips will depart Greensboro, N.C., to Roanoke, Va., and return to Greensboro.

611 will depart from Lynchburg, Va. for full-day excursions on May 6 and 7 to Petersburg Va. and return.

On May 27, 28 and 29, 611 will pull a total of six half-day trips. Morning excursions will run from Roanoke to Lynchburg and back via the Blue Ridge grade. Afternoon trips will run from Roanoke to Walton and return via the Christiansburg grade. The morning and afternoon trips are separate excursions. 2017 Public Excursion Schedule:

• April 22, 2017 - The Roanoker, Greensboro, N.C. to Roanoke, Va.

• April 23, 2017 - The Roanoker, Greensboro, N.C. to Roanoke, Va.

• May 6, 2017 - The Cavalier, Lynchburg, Va., to Petersburg, Va.

• May 7, 2017 - The Cavalier, Lynchburg, Va., to Petersburg, Va.

• May 27, 2017 - The Powhatan Arrow, Roanoke, Va., to Lynchburg, Va.

• May 27, 2017 – The Pocahontas, Roanoke, Va., to Walton (Radford), Va.

• May 28, 2017 - The Powhatan Arrow, Roanoke, Va., to Lynchburg, Va.

• May 28, 2017 – The Pocahontas, Roanoke, Va., to Walton (Radford), Va.

• May 29, 2017 - The Powhatan Arrow, Roanoke, Va., to Lynchburg, Va.

• May 29, 2017 – The Pocahontas, Roanoke, Va., to Walton (Radford), Va.

Ticket sale dates will be announced in early January. For excursion information and to sign up for email notifications, visit www.FireUp611.org

"We are so grateful to Norfolk Southern Corporation for allowing the Class J 611 to run during 2017," said Beverly T. Fitzpatrick, Jr., VMT executive director. "We are also thankful to many partners including the North Carolina Transportation Museum, the Roanoke Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society, the Norfolk & Western Historical Society, and the many donors who are helping us bring back the wonder for 611's passengers and fans of all ages."

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