Celebrating the era of the railroad

After 22 years, the city of Metolius is bringing back Spike and Rail Day to celebrate the era of the railroad.

“The year 1991 was the last time it was held,” said Patrick Hanenkrat, the public works supervisor for Metolius.

Hanenkrat said they decided to resurrect the event following a suggestion from the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce Board, of which he is a member.

“The board wanted to have identities for each town. Metolius was a railroad town and used to have a parade and pit roast a pig in the park on Spike and Rail Day,” Hanenkrat said.

The new Spike and Rail Day is set for Saturday, Sept. 14, beginning with a Move Your Caboose Walk/Run at 7 a.m. People can register up to the starting time, and receive a T-shirt with their $15 registration.

At 10 a.m., a parade with the theme “I Think I Can” will be held through town, with entries from the fire department, sheriff’s office, JROTC mounted color guard, a motorcycle group, and a stagecoach carrying City Council members already scheduled.

“We’re looking for more entries,” he said, noting people from Culver, Madras and the surrounding area are welcome. Free streamers will be given out to kids to decorate their bikes for the parade.

Following the parade, a barbecue and family fun will be held at Metolius City Park from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Hanenkrat said they no longer know how to do a pit pig roast, but instead will be grilling hamburgers and hot dogs.

The classic rock band Bad Cats will entertain, and there will be a beer garden.

Kids’ games include gunny sack races, a ring toss, dunk tank, a duck pond game, and more.

The Crooked River Ranch Lions Club will have its mini-train in the parade and will also be giving rides to kids until 3 p.m.

From 5-9 p.m., activities will move to the historic Metolius Train Depot, and will feature music by the Box Canyon Bluegrass Band, a “Spud-tacular Potato Bar” feed, and a beer garden. Creative cooks are invited to enter the “Potato Dessert” contest.

To volunteer at the event, or for more information, contact city hall at 541-546-5533, or at HYPERLINK ""

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