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Tom Flanary

Tom Flanary

Tom Flanary is a Director on the Board of Directors, and maintains the website for GCRM. He has been involved in GCRM as a volunteer since 2011, and has been a director since 2012. If you have comments, concerns, or questions, please contact him directly at Tom.Flanary@gcrm.org

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Tuesday, 12 June 2012 17:45

Contact Us

Services, Address, & Contact

The Gold Coast Railroad Museum features more than 40 pieces of historic railroad equipment including the Ferdinand Magellan, California Zephyr cars Silver Crescent and Silver Stag. Florida East Coast steam engines #153 and #113, several diesel locomotives, and many other cars of all types and descriptions. The model railroad exhibit area features most gauges of model trains and has a "hands on" model railroad exhibit for children. The grounds and equipment of the Gold Coast Railroad Museum are available for photo and movie "shoots" with both static and live equipment and have been the backdrop for numerous commercial and catalog layouts, television productions, and feature films. The property is also available for private parties, birthday parties, corporate events, group tours, and field trips.

 

Directions & Address

The Gold Coast Railroad Museum is located in Miami, Florida, U.S.A., on property adjacent to Miami-Dade County's "Zoo Miami". Enter from the Zoo Miami main entrance.

The Gold Coast Railroad Museum Inc.
12450 S.W. 152nd Street
Miami, Florida 33177-1402
U.S.A.


View Map

Phones, Fax, and E-mail

Phone:

305-253-0063

Fax:

305-233-4641

E-mail:

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Model Railroad Club Info:

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Tuesday, 12 June 2012 17:43

Facility Rental

Museum Grounds Use Information

The Museum grounds are routinely used for a variety of functions including:

 

  • Field Trips
  • Birthday Parties
  • Events, Meetings, and Weddings

 

 

  • Film Shoots
  • Model/Still Shoots
  • Lounge Car Rentals

 

Please see our Reservation Information section for details on booking your event.

Field Trips

The Museum welcomes school groups and field trips. We offer a unique educational experience for students of all ages. Your groups will enjoy:

  • Train Rides.
  • Educational Tours.
  • Historic Artifacts.
  • Picnic Areas.
  • Interactive Games.
  • Model Trains and Thomas Tables.

 

Palmetto Pre-K School

 

 

Birthday Parties

The Museum invites you to plan your birthday celebration in our nostalgic atmosphere.

Amenities include exclusive use of one of our designated Picnic Party Areas consisting of a group of picnic tables under our train shed or use of an air-conditioned Lounge Car (depending on package). During your party, guests can enjoy the Museum's exhibits, including the Model Train room.

  • We suggest booking at least two months in advance.
  • Party hours on weekends are from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. (after-hours party packages are available).
  • Party area must be cleaned up and all guests and vehicles departed from the property by 4:30 p.m.

Package #1—Sheltered Picnic Party Area

  1. Use of four (4) large picnic tables under the Main Exhibit Building from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.Sheltered picnic tables beside standard gauge coach.
  2. Scheduled Private Train Ride on our two-foot gauge Edwin Link “Steam” Train.
  3. A museum staff member will be on hand to assist you.
  4. Your guests may tour our historic trains, historic artifacts and grounds, and have access to our Model Display building, home to our hands-on Thomas the Tank Engine play tables.
    Sheltered picnic tables beside the Silver Crescent.
   
   

Package #2—Air-conditioned Lounge Car

View inside the SAL #6300 Lounge Car.
View of exterior of the SAL #6300 Lounge Car.
  1. Exclusive use of the air-conditioned Lounge Car #6300 on Track #1, as well as four (4) large picnic tables alongside the car, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Lounge Car is a guaranteed memorable experience, as well as an excellent way to avoid those excruciatingly hot Florida days.
  2. Scheduled Private Train Ride on our two-foot gauge Edwin Link “Steam” Train.
  3. A museum staff member will be on hand to assist you.
  4. Your guests may tour our historic trains, historic artifacts and grounds, and have access to our Model Display building, home to our hands-on Thomas the Tank Engine play tables.
   
   

Package #3—Air-conditioned Lounge Car

  1. Exclusive use of the air-conditioned Lounge Car #254 on Track #1, as well as four (4) large picnic tables alongside the car, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Lounge Car is a guaranteed memorable experience, as well as an excellent way to avoid those excruciatingly hot Florida days.
  2. Scheduled Private Train Ride on our two-foot gauge Edwin Link “Steam” Train.
  3. A museum staff member will be on hand to assist you.
  4. Your guests may tour our historic trains, historic artifacts and grounds, and have access to our Model Display building, home to our hands-on Thomas the Tank Engine play tables.
   
   
View inside the ACL #254 Lounge Car.
View of exterior of the ACL #254 Lounge Car.

Big Kid Birthday Party—Air-conditioned Lounge Car

Who says that a railroad party is just for kids? Here is a package for the young at heart. Prior to the Museum opening the "Big Kid" will be trained on basic railroad operating rules and familiarized with the controls of a standard gauge locomotive. Guests will then arrive to celebrate with the "Big Kid" on board the air-conditioned lounge car. Guests will have the opprtunity to explore the Museum and, at the appointed time, climb on the train as the conductor shouts "All aboard." The train departs with the "Big Kid" at the throttle for a special train ride. Two guests will be able to ride in the cab with the "Big Kid" as they engineer the train (under supervision of a certified locomotive engineer).

Price includes a membership to the Gold Coast Railroad Museum for the "Big Kid," training at the controls of a standard gauge locomotive for the "Big Kid," exclusive use of our Atlantic Coast Line #254 Lounge Car, admission and standard gauge train ride for up to 20 guests, and a cab ride for 2 guests. 
 

Requirements for the "Big Kid" are:

  • Must be 18 years of age and speak and understand English.
  • May not have consumed alcohol 12 hours prior to classroom instruction and/or locomotive operation or be under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.
  • Must have completed a membership application (since insurance regulations require that persons operating Gold Coast Railroad Museum equipment must be members.)

We have the room to host multiple parties at the same time and can offer special rates for schools and other special needs.

Please see our Reservation Information section for availability and details on booking your party.

Feel free to download the more detailed Party and Event Information Sheet.

 

Film Shoots

       Film Shoot

The Gold Coast Railroad Museum offers a variety of different scenic backdrops for filming all located on its 50 acre site.  The Museum, which is located just over a mile off of Florida’s Turnpike in South Miami-Dade County has historic railcars, a railroad yard, operating rail equipment, pineland forests, industrial-looking brick structures, and open fields.  We are easy to work with and can accommodate most any shooting schedule.  The Museum even has railcars that can be rented to serve as dressing/make-up rooms or on site production offices.

Download our Scouting Guide for more information.

Fee Structure:
8:00 am - 4:00 pm 

(This fee includes: A staff member to assist you, reservation fee, gate entrance fee, equipment usage fee (for filming purposes – non-operating), and fixed costs (electrical, restrooms, etc…)

6:00 am - 8:00 am and 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm
(This fee includes: A staff member to assist you, reservation fee, gate entrance fee, equipment usage fee (for filming purposes – non-operating), fixed costs (electrical, restrooms, etc…), and after-hours staff costs.

7:00 pm - 6:00 am
 (This fee includes: A staff member to assist you, reservation fee, gate entrance fee, equipment usage fee (for filming purposes – non-operating), fixed costs (electrical, restrooms, etc…), after-hours staff costs and Metro Zoo main gate security fees.

For more information, please contact Lilia Fontana, Executive Director at 305 253 0063.

 

Model/Still Shoots

Fee Structure:
8:00 am - 4:00 pm 
(This fee includes: A staff member to assist you, reservation fee, gate entrance fee, equipment usage fee (for photographic purposes – non-operating), and fixed costs (electrical, restrooms, etc…)

6:00 am - 8:00 am and 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm
(This fee includes: A staff member to assist you, reservation fee, gate entrance fee, equipment usage fee (for photographic purposes – non-operating), fixed costs (electrical, restrooms, etc…), and after-hours staff costs.

7:00 pm - 6:00 am
 (This fee includes: A staff member to assist you, reservation fee, gate entrance fee, equipment usage fee (for photographic purposes – non-operating), fixed costs (electrical, restrooms, etc…), after-hours staff costs and Metro Zoo main gate security fees.


 

Walk-in Photo Shoots
(Engagement/Student)


 
Mini Photo Shoots
(Engagements, graduations, weddings, family portraits, and Quinceaneras)











 
 
Commercial Photo Shoots
(We offer trains, brick building backgrounds and forest and grassy field settings)

 

All Commercial Photo Shoots must be self-contained and insured. 
( We have no available electric so generators are required for everything. 
We will need a copy of the Photographers’ insurance certificate a day before the shoot - specifying 
“The Gold Coast Railroad Museum" as additionally insured. )


 

 

Events, Meetings, and Weddings

The Museum's plaza area, main display shed, and several air-conditioned lounge cars are available for meetings, weddings, and other events.

Wedding of Bill and Lourdes MetzOver the past five decades, in close cooperation with the Miami Dade County Parks Department, the Gold Coast Railroad Museum has grown into a remarkable historic train and industrial arts collection. The railroad museum is not just a collection of trains. It is about families, community, schools and the joy of learning in a historic environment. On its fifty acres of historic property the Museum provides train rides and hosts increasing numbers of guided school field trips with an orientation presentation, lectures, bus tours, birthday parties, weddings, receptions, business and corporate meetings, film shoots and special events that bring the history of trains to life. The mission of the Museum is to serve by educating all the youths and adults who walk through its doors. Its commitment to education focuses on hands-on interdisciplinary and intergenerational exhibits, programs, outreach activities and special events which speak to the richness and diversity of our Florida heritage.

 

Wedding under the Shed

The Gold Coast Railroad Museum can work to meet your catering needs and can work with your preffered caterer.

The area of Museum property desired for the service or reception must be approved by the Museum in advance.  

Large events and/or multi-day events requiring significant use of the grounds, including closing the Museum during the event, require significant lead time (a minimum of one month is recommended).

 

Business Meeting

ACL 254

The Museum has a lounge car which is now available for rent. The ACL Observation Bar Lounge #254 is sure to offer a very unique place to conduct your next business meeting. The air-conditioned lounge car can accommodate up to 45 people and is ready for catered events such as business meetings. After hours use can be arranged. Please follow the link to see photos of the car.







ACL 254

Please consult the Party and Event Information Sheet or call for more details.

Please see our Reservation Information section for availability and details on booking your rental.

 

Reservations Information

For reservations, availability, or other information, call 305-253-0063 during regular weekday hours, or e-mail  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Please consult the Party and Event Information Sheet or call for more details.

Driving Directions and other Contact Information.

 

 

Tuesday, 12 June 2012 17:34

GCMRR Club

 


The Model Railroad Page

General Hours of Operation
Monday - Friday:            11:00 am - 2:00 pm
Saturday and Sunday: 11:00 am - 2:00 pm
Hours may vary depending on volunteer availability.


CLICK ON THE LINK ABOVE for FREE ACCESS 
to the current issue of 

Model Railroad Magazine

 


The Gold Coast Railroad Museum houses quite an array of model railroads in many scales as well as priceless railroad paraphernalia. The various scales represented are N, HO, O27, and G scale. The collections and equipment on display have all been donated or loaned to the Museum to be displayed for the public's enjoyment in an air-conditioned exhibition building.


 

A group of children play with hands-on trainsets at Model display area.

Hands On

The Museum has several wood trainset layouts for visiting children to play with hands on! The layouts feature "Thomas" and other equipment, both free-wheeled and motorized. 

There is room for several children to play at once, and even seating areas for supervising adults. So bring the children for a fun and educational experience you can share with your family.

 


 

N Scale

The 4 x 8 foot N scale layout was another donation to the Museum and has three operating loops for trains to run on. The layout has a rather large yard on the front side and another yard on the upper level. 

A large mountain has been constructed in the center of the layout. The mountain contains five tunnels for trains to run through continuously. There are two lower level loops and an upper level loop with a 3 percent, ascending and descending grade.
N Scale Layout

 

HO Scale Layout

HO Scale

The Museum has one HO scale on the property. The layout is a small mountain display layout with two continuous running loops. 

The GCMRR Club has plans to design and build a large "New" Digital Command & Control HO Scale layout, enabling members to operate their own locomotives and trains in a more realistic and operational way. Sign up and join the club so you can help us design our new layout.

 


 

O Scale

One display in the Museum's model railroad collection is a rather large O27 scale layout, built with mostly Lionel rolling stock and accessories. The layout measures about 10 by 8 feet with an access hole in the middle of the square. The layout has 2 continuously running loops, and one elevated loop. 

The layout's equipment comes from various historical eras of the Lionel equipment offered from the 1950's to the present. This layout was donated to the museum unfinished and scenic work is continually being done on a majority of the layout's surface area.
O27 Layout

 

 


 

G Scale Layout

G Scale

The Museum contains two large G Scale layout which are somewhat scenicked but needs a lot more attention to details. One of the layouts has a back and forth trolley line as well as one continuous loop, at the present time.

Many people have G Scale railroads outside in their yards and around their gardens in Southern Florida since the weather is so nice year round. This is a very durable and sturdy gauge to model.

 

 

Car & Locomotive Display

Real trains

Other Areas of Interest 

A collection of American Flyer S gauge and old Rivarossi large scale equipment is on public display. The museum also has a diorama of a Western Pacific California Zephyr train set in HO scale.  

As a member of the museum or the GCMRR Club you also have an opportunity, with the proper training and certification to operate the 24" Gauge Link Train and the 1:1 Scale trains for our guests too!


 

If you would like to be a member of the Gold Coast Model Railroad Club and help to operate and maintain
these wonderful examples of model railroading magic, 
call the
museum or drop an e-mail message to  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

 

 

Tuesday, 12 June 2012 17:32

Special Equipment

Special Equipment

The Gold Coast Railroad Museum has several pieces of special equipment on display.

  • Florida East Coast Railway (FEC) Track Section Car
  • Port Everglades Railroad Track Section Car
  • Case Steam Traction Engine (Farm Tractor)
Tuesday, 12 June 2012 17:31

Helium Tank Car MHAX #1202

Freight Cars - Helium Tank Car MHAX #1202

Type: Helium Tank Car.

Built: 1962.

Status: Unrestored, On display.

Acquisition Date: Donated by the Kennedy Space Center, July, 2002.

This high pressure, helium transportation tank car, carries reporting marks MHAX 1202 (United States, Department of the Interior, Helium Field Operations, Amarillo, Texas). This car was "purpose built" to transport helium from gas producing wells, mostly located in Amarillo, Texas, to various different consumers throughout the United States. Helium was considered a war regulated commodity until well into the 1970's, since the United States had the majority of the world's proven reserves. Until intense oil production became possible in the North Sea, off the European coast, helium was not widely available worldwide.

Although this car was built in 1962, it is identical to those which brought helium to the Naval Air Station, Richmond, located on this site, for use in the 25, non-rigid airships based here.

Most recently, this car was used at the Kennedy Space Center, at Cape Canaveral, Florida, for the transportation and storage of helium used in a wide variety of processes in space flight. The Gold Coast Railroad Museum's NASA #1, ALCO switcher, moved this car, along with others, at the Kennedy Space Center.

Very few of these cars were ever produced and were rarely seen by the public.

This car is rather short for a U.S. railcar. It is 45'02" (13,76 m) long, 12'11" (3,8 m) high and 10'02" (3,05 m) wide. The rated storage pressure for the tanks onboard this car was 3,000 PSI (143,7 Kpascals).

 

Tuesday, 12 June 2012 17:30

Freight Cars

 

Freight Cars and Other Cars Used in Railroad Service

The Gold Coast Railroad Museum has a varied collection of freight cars and other unique railroad cars on display.

Some items have links to new pages with further details and/or images about the items. This list is not all inclusive and is presented as a sample of what you will see visiting the Museum.

  • Helium Transportation Car MHAX #1202

  • Frisco Line Railroad Gondola Car #60053

  • Port Everglades Railroad Flatcar #1103

  • Seaboard Coast Line Railroad (SCL) Steam Crane #765157

  • Burro Crane #15

  • Southern Railway (SR) Boxcar #260909

  • Southern Railway (SR) Boxcar #27416

  • Seaboard Coast Line Railroad (SCL) Boxcar #126307

  • Belcher Oil Company (BEPX) Tank Car #105

  • Belcher Oil Company (BEPX) Tank Car #121

  • United States Army (USAX) Side Dump Ballast Car

  • United States Army (USAX) Flatcar #35703

  • Atlantic Coast Line Railroad (ACL) Caboose #0322

  • Seaboard Coast Line Railroad (SCL, ex SAL) Boxcar #593188

 

ACL #254 Bar Lounge Car

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is a blunt-end observation, bar lounge built by the Budd Company for the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad. The car was delivered in January 1940 (pre WWII) and is of stainless steel construction.

ACL #254 was one of three rear-end cars for the "Tamiami Champion" streamliner. The train never operated. When delivered, the car was assigned to East Coast (Miami) or West Coast (Tampa) "Champion" Service. It originally contained a 57-seat lounge, reduced to 52 seats by Amtrak.

A diaphragm was in place, as built, on the rear of the car so that other sections of the "Champion" could be joined together north of Jacksonville, Florida.

This car is available to rent for meetings, lectures, weddings, and other gatherings. Please contact the Museum for more information.

 

 

Details

Type: Blunt-end observation, bar lounge.

Built: 1941.

Status: Open, On display, Operational.

Acquisition Date: June 2003.

 

Florida East Coast Coach "Belle Glade"

Ordered in May 1943 from the Budd Company, but not delivered until July 1946, the Belle Glade and her sisters were a direct response by the Atlantic Coast Line (ACL)/Florida East Coast (FEC) railroad partnership to increase competition. By 1938, ACL's passenger traffic was in decline. Ridership was being hammered by both new competition from the automobile and new streamlined equipment from the Seaboard Air Line Railroad. Beginning in 1939, ACL/FEC placed large orders with the Budd Company to begin to upgrade their premier trains and introduce new streamlined equipment on trains such as The Champion and The Florida Special. These trains were just two of the many trains that provided service between New York and Florida.

The Belle Glade was billed by the FEC as a luxury, long distance coach. The car was equipped with 52 reclining seats with leg rests, each seat having its own individual reading lights, and a conductor's desk. The car was mechanically air conditioned and steam heated. Both ends of the car contained smoking lounges and both men's and lady's restrooms. As with many railroads, the FEC maintained the tradition of naming its cars for on line cities and throughout its career on the FEC, the Belle Glade never received a number.

By the early 1960's the FEC was anxious to exit the passenger business. The long strike of 1962 would begin the process. All long distance passenger trains were transferred to the Seaboard Air Line. While the FEC was legally required to maintain intrastate passenger service, the railroad was effectively out of the passenger business. The intrastate service was discontinued by 1963.

The Belle Glade continued to ply her familiar New York to Florida routes. In 1962, the car was sold to the SAL and became Seaboard "6262". Later, in 1967, the 6262 was transferred to the newly formed Seaboard Coast Line railroad and continued to operate in revenue service until the formation of Amtrak in 1971.

The Seaboard Coast Line opted to join Amtrak in 1971, and again the Belle Glade was operating for a new owner. The SCL 6262 became Amtrak 5417. The car was rebuilt by Amtrak in 1977, and could be found operating both in New York to Florida service as well as Washington, D.C. to Montreal.

The future of the 5417 appeared bleak in 1981 as Amtrak's new Amfleet cars rolled off the Budd assembly line. The 5417 was soon bumped from her New York - Florida assignment and by 1983 retired from service. In the following year, 5417 was consigned to a Buffalo New York scrapper.

The car was purchased by the Eagle Canon Passenger Car Company of Pakersburg, West Virginia and placed in charter service. Later, it was sold once again to Mr. David Ross and renamed the "Frank L. Kerr". The Frank L. Kerr regularly operated on the now famous, Norfolk - Southern Corporation steam trains and made frequent runs throughout the Midwest on Operation Lifesaver trains. Frank L. Kerr was a Pennsylvania Railroad conductor in service from Pittsburgh to Crestline, Ohio, for almost 40 years, and was the grandfather of Mr. Ross.

The car was purchased by the Gold Coast Railroad Museum in the Spring of 1995. It's named was changed back to Belle Glade and is currently in use on regular revenue trains at the Museum.

Details

Type: 54 seat coach.
Built: 1946
Status: Open, Operational, Used in regular revenue service at the Museum.
Acquisition Date: Spring 1995.

Seaboard Air Line (SAL) Parlor-Tavern #6300

This stainless steel car was built in 1939 by the Edward G. Budd Manufacturing Company for the Seaboard Air Line Railroad. It was part of the original seven car streamlined Silver Meteor, operating between New York City and Florida. #6300 was built as a coach-tavern-hostess bedroom car. The bedroom, located between the parlor section and the bar, was "home" for the train hostess, who was also a registered nurse, providing on-board medical capability for passengers and crew during the journey to Florida.

In later years, this car served on other Seaboard Air Line trains such as the Silver Star and the Silver Comet, between New York City and the South. This car represents the third year of Budd's innovative stainless steel passenger car production, which continued at the Red Lion Avenue plant in Philadelphia for over forty-five years more.

The Atlantic Coast Line and rival Seaboard Air Line were eventually merged into the Seaboard Coast Line Railroad. 6300 became car number 6410 on The Seaboard Coast Line in 1968. It was sold to Amtrak in 1971 becoming car number 3810. It was purchased by Allegheny Rail Express in 1984. It was then sold to Village Rail Excursions followed by a sale to the BNC museum then finally sold to GNA, Inc. in 1993, who converted it into a table car. The car was purchased at auction by a private owner in November 1995 and leased to the Northern Central Railway, where it was used from 1996 until 2000. It was then operated on the Indian Head Central Railway until 2001.

The Gold Coast Railroad Museum acquired the car in June 2003.

This car is available to rent for meetings, lectures, weddings, and other gatherings. Please contact the Museum for more information.

Details

Type: Parlor-Tavern
Built: 1939
Status: Open, On display, Operational
Acquisition Date: June 2003

Tuesday, 12 June 2012 17:23

U.S. Army Hospital Car #89436

U.S. Army Hospital Car #89436

In this photo, the car is arriving at the Gold Coast Railroad Museum, front gate, on a five axle, low-boy trailer, pulled by a "triple-screw" semi-tractor. The overall length of just the trailer was 97 feet (29,57 m). As a result, the unit moved as a "permit load" which means it could only travel during daylight hours, on week days only (no holidays or weekends).

The rig made for an interesting sight, as most motorists are not used to seeing a railroad car moving along a highway!

In this photo, the trucks had already been placed on the track, in position to receive the car. Two 120 ton (108.862,170 Kilo), hydraulic, truck cranes, built in Germany, have moved into position and have hoisted the hospital car off the transport trailer. The trailer was driven out from under the car body and the car will be set onto cribbing which will be set-up immediately next to the track.

A second hoist began and the car was slowly "boomed-out" over the area adjacent to the track where the cribbing will be placed.

This is was part of a U.S. Government 100 car order (USA 89400 - USA 89499); used as a transportation vehicle to move military patients between medical facilities.

The car was declared surplus in 1969. In the late 1980's it was acquired through the State of Florida Federal Surplus Program.

This car was partially restored to its "Original Use" appearance in 2002 by the National Park Service and returned to the Gold Coast Railroad Museum for display.

Details

Type: Hospital car, open bunks, kitchen, medical facilities.
Built: 1945 by the American Car & Foundry Co.
Status: Open, On display.