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state railroad museum

Science fiction fantasy and historic reality will come together Saturday and Sunday at the Nevada State Railroad Museum.

Or to put it simply: Steampunk meets steam trains.

For the second consecutive year, “Steampunk ‘n’ Trains” offers a weekend of activities including train rides, food trucks, a crafts fair, fashion show and music. Participants can ride on historic Virginia & Truckee Railroad equipment, including the McKeen Motor Car and V&T No. 25 locomotive.

Steampunk is defined as a genre of science fiction that has a historical setting and typically features steam-powered machinery rather than advanced technology. The 1999 film “The Wild Wild West,” which starred Will Smith and Kevin Kline, was an homage to Steampunk.

The Nevada State Railroad Museum is home to several steam-powered locomotives and is the only museum in existence to feature working 1875 narrow-gauge and standard gauge locomotives — the Glenbrook and Inyo, respectively.

The V&T No. 25 locomotive, which pulls passenger cars regularly at the museum, is also steam powered.

Wristbands for the Steampunk ‘n’ Trains event are $15 for adults 18 and older; $10 for museum members; $5 for children ages 4-17; and free for children 3 and under. They include museum admission and unlimited rides for the day. For more information contact the museum at (775) 687-6953 x224.

FORT CHURCHILL PHOTO CONTEST

Fort Churchill State Historic Park announces its third annual amateur photo contest.

Visitors to Fort Churchill and Buckland Station are invited to submit photos of scenery, plants, wildlife and cultural resources found within the park. The top three winners will receive a Nevada State Parks Passport Permit, good for free entrance to any Nevada State Park for an entire year.

Entries must be submitted as an 8 x 10 or smaller photograph and dropped off at Buckland Station on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m.–2 p.m. or mailed to Nevada State Parks, Fort Churchill Photo Contest Entry, 16799 Lahontan Dam, Fallon, NV 89406.

Entries are due by Oct. 1, and will be on display for public voting at Buckland Station from Oct. 7-Dec. 31.

showgirls

It’s been 28 years since “Hello Hollywood Hello” graced what was then the world’s biggest stage at what is now the Grand Sierra Resort.

During its 11-year-run at the then-MGM Grand, from 1978-1989, the production was viewed by close to 7 million people. It featured a cast of more than 100, many of them showgirls dressed in elaborate costumes.

While the show lives only in memories, videos and photographs, many of the costumes remain – and are still being used – thanks to Reno’s Karen Burns, who is the subject of this month’s “High Noon Shootout with Neal Cobb” at the Nevada Historical Society.

The event is June 15 at noon and includes a showing of Burns’ appearance on the television program “Old Tales of Nevada,” followed by a question-and-answer period with Burns.

A former dancer in the production, Burns has amassed a collection of more than 1,200 authentic costumes from the stage show. The showgirls are still a familiar sight at special events in Reno and the region.

Admission is $5 for adults; free for children 17 and younger and for Nevada Historical Society members. The Historical Society is located at 1650 N. Virginia St., in Reno.

Attendees are encouraged to arrive early as seating is limited. For details, call 688-1190.

ETHIOPIAN ARTWORK

Ethiopia is a world away from the neon lights of Las Vegas, but for Eyob Mergia, an artist and film student at the College of Southern Nevada, the colors of his homeland are always with him through his artwork.

An exhibit of Mergia’s paintings, titled “The Meskel Festival,” will be featured at the Nevada Arts Council’s Legislative eXhibition Series (LXS) at the Nevada State Legislative building through Friday.

Mergia is the last of six Nevada artists whose work has been featured during the biennial session of the Legislature.

Mergia grew up in Ethiopian highlands, studying classical art at the Addis Ababa University School of Fine Art.

After moving to the U.S. in 1997, he briefly continued his art studies in South Dakota, where he encountered Cubism and other modernist tendencies. His educational influences — one toward realism and one toward abstraction — are tempered by a third: traditional art of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.

The LXS Gallery space is located on the first floor in the Legislative Building, 401 S. Carson St. The gallery is across the hall from the Caucus Deli. It’s open to the public from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.

V&T RAILROAD

Get your tickets for V&T Train Rides now. This year features the return of an all-new Dinner & Melodrama Train Ride, plus a new Dinner & Murder Mystery Train Ride and the ever-popular Toast of the Canyon Wine Tasting Train!

But of course, you can still take the fully-narrated excursion into historic Virginia City to explore one of the country’s largest National Historic Districts, too. For information call 877-724-5007.

NORTHERN NEVADA RAILROAD

As the Nevada Northern Railway Museum rumbles back to life for its 30th anniversary excursion season, the working historic railroad brings back visitor favorites and adds new events guests will love.

The Nevada Northern is unique among railroad museums, not only offering visitors the chance to see history, but to experience it as it was a century ago with rides and other events on this living, working railroad.

New for 2017 is the Pony Express Limited in June, with special, celebratory postage, Pony Express horseback riders and photo opportunities.

Also new this year is a train ride taking advantage of one of the wonders of the solar system – a solar eclipse excursion on Aug. 21 called the Eclipse Express. Departing at 9:15 a.m., special eclipse viewing glasses will be on.

For more information and a complete schedule, go to http://www.nnry.com.

KELSO’S NEW RELEASE

A new release, “Andy and Spirit Go on a Day Count,” is written by Fernley author Mary Jean Kelso. It is the sixth in a series for children that features a wheelchair-dependent boy and an albino therapy horse. The illustrations were painted by award-winning artist KC Snider.

A longtime resident of Nevada, Kelso has written about 30 books. She has won several awards for her writing.

Kelso is a member of Made in Nevada, the Fort Churchill Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, The Catherine Cynthia Overton (Kelso’s second great grandmother) Chapter of The Daughters of the Republic of Texas, The Alamo Defenders Descendants Association and The Alamo Society.

Kelso’s books, including “Andy and Spirit Go on a Day Count,” are available through the regular online outlets, at http://www.guardianangelpublishing.com, and her website, http://www.maryjeankelsoauthor.wix.com/mjkel. Contact Kelso at mjkel@aol.com or look for her at author signings locally.

She will be signing at The Lights of Christmas’ “Christmas in July Craft Show” at the Fallon Convention Center on July 22. Proceeds from booth rentals are donated to Toys for Tots and seniors in need.