Every aspect of the Museum, from Conductor to Motorman to restoration specialist to archivist to museum store operations, is run by volunteers.
Be it once per week, once per month, in one of our well-established departments, or just during special events like the Pumpkin Patch each October, or the Scenic Limited trains each April, or the Santa Trains in December, we need your help!
It doesn’t matter if you have special skills or not we provide all the necessary training. All you need is a willingness to learn, some spare time, and an interest in supporting the Museum’s mission to preserve the regional heritage of electric railway transportation.
We are currently seeking:
Our museum’s main attraction, an 11- mile round-trip interurban train ride would not be possible without our amazing, knowledgeable and dedicated volunteers. If you’ve ever wanted to learn how to operate our historic streetcars, interurbans and LRVs, now is your chance! Our training program teaches new volunteers how to operate our electric trains in an efficient and safe manner and become both conductors and motormen. Fulfill your lifelong dreams of operating real trains!
Crew members keep our historic train fleet in tip-top shape, conduct long-term major restoration projects and any other mechanical jobs around the museum. The shop crew meets Wednesdays and Saturdays each week. We especially need people skilled in metal-working and woodworking, electricians, mechanical engineers, and electrical engineers. Even if you don’t have these skills but would like to learn, volunteers are always welcome in the shop!
Library & Archives
The Library & Archives is made up of over 30 volunteers who receive, inventory, record, acknowledge, preserve and file items donated to the museum. This amiable group catalogues over 15,000 items and digitizes over 10,000 items annually and provides the labor equivalent of four full time employees. Volunteers need no special qualifications and can easily be trained in all aspects of Archival procedures in less than a day.
The track department are the unsung heroes of the museum. Well-maintained railroad track looks good, but more importantly, it provides a quality ride for museum visitors and lessens wear and tear on our historic railcars. The track department has assembled an impressive collection of track machinery, but a degree of hand work is still required for the work. If you enjoy satisfying, energetic work in the outdoors, perhaps this is the department for you. The track crew works every second and fourth Saturday and no experience or special skills are needed.
Museum docents primarily conduct guided tours inside our car barns and sometimes greet visitors at the boarding platform. If you enjoy meeting people, have a love for history and are available weekends, then volunteering as a docent may be a perfect fit for you! Of course, training is provided.
Overhead Lines and Substations volunteers maintain the overhead wire system that our interurbans, streetcars and LRVs operate under. In addition, they are responsible for the operation and maintenance of the museum’s four substations which convert high-voltage alternating current to the 600 volts DC that power our railcars.
Buildings and Grounds
Infrastructure upkeep and upgrades are important for the smooth operation of the Western Railway Museum. Such activities are on-going, periodic, and seasonal. The obvious maintenance items are the appearance of the landscaped areas and buildings. Others are the hidden utilities, such as electrical and water. If you have skills in, or are interested in learning these types of activities, please come on out.
Be part of electric railway history! Make new friends and help educate visitors of our historic past!