Moffat Road Railroad Museum plans to become world-class attraction

The vision for the Moffat Road Railroad Museum should be completed by 2023, according to the museum's director, including a train ride and working steam-powered crane.
Courtesy Dave Naples

Granby’s train museum is hoping to open the “Disney” version of the railroad attraction by 2023.

Last year, Moffat Road Railroad Museum Director Dave Naples told the Granby town board that a wealthy donor was willing to commit the funds necessary to bring his vision to life. The unnamed philanthropist has already spent $1.5 million on current upgrades and plans to contribute $3.2 million total, according to Naples.

In this year’s update to the town board, Naples revealed the rendering of the train museum’s vision, which he said should be up and running by 2023 with a number of fantastic installations to make it a world-class train museum.

Expansions to the indoor museum will make it the largest model railroad museum in the country, according to Naples. He’s also working on a full-scale railroad water tower that will be motion activated.

The museum is working on the kid’s train ride, built as a replica of the train that ran on the Moffat Road, with a hopeful opening date of July 15. Naples said the train ride also features a plow, so it should be able to operate for Christmas as well.

The steam-powered crane from the Moffat Railroad, which Naples has been working to restore, is getting close to being fully operable.

The museum is also planning to pave concrete walkways through the complex. Naples added that the museum has finished restoring its rare 1923 wooden caboose.

“It’s really done and really good looking with artifacts and tools and signs,” Naples said.

Naples said the museum’s gift shop is now an authorized dealer for BRIO and Lionel Trains selling model trains and collector’s items in addition to goods made by local artisans. The museum has revamped its board of directors and brought on a full-scale crew to complete work and document artifacts.

“None of us are museum people so we’re learning,” he said.

Naples added that he is beyond grateful for the support of the donor, who has made possible the vision Naples has long had for the Moffat Road Railroad Museum. The town board was delighted to hear about all the improvements.

The museum opens for the season May 28 with a special giveaway planned to celebrate the season opening. Naples said he’s also planning for a big Fourth of July celebration and end of year Crawfish boiler featuring a performance from Naples’ band.

Naples said tickets for the museum will be $7 for adults and $4 for kids. The train ride will be an additional $7 per adult and $2 per kid. The museum will be offering four different annual membership packages as well.

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