The hunt for Railroad Days volunteers continues
Service organizations and businesses in Eastern Plumas County were invited to an early morning meeting March 8 at Jimmie’s Roadhouse 70 to discuss the future of Railroad Days.
Seventeen individuals showed up to indicate their interest and enthusiasm in retaining the yearly Portola event. Although the city of Portola has decreased its financial support for this year and can no longer underwrite the man-hours they have contributed in the past to set up and clean up, city representatives were on hand to show that they were still willing to help.
The Eastern Plumas Chamber of Commerce has agreed to be the nonprofit umbrella for the event, which will allow business sponsors and individuals donating money to claim donations on their tax returns.
But like the city, the chamber has more enthusiasm for the event than money.
“We’re passionate about Railroad Days, but we can’t do it alone. Everybody in the community really needs to pull together to put this on,” said Audrey Ellis, the chamber’s executive director.
Curt McBride, last year’s co-chairman of Railroad Days, has already stepped down from his post, but has offered to help the new chairman get started.
First, a new chairman must come forward. Many of the people in attendance expressed a willingness to participate in Railroad Days, but thus far, no one has agreed to take on the hard job of overseeing the group.
Much of the discussion at the last meeting centered around downsizing the event from four days to one. Many past attractions will disappear this year, like the popular car show.
Organizers are also looking to contain the far-flung event by maintaining only two locations, City Park and the Railroad Museum, and eliminating Commercial Street as a venue.
Discussions about how to do more with less money will continue as Railroad Days begins to redefine itself in a leaner form.
Volunteers willing to help with Railroad Days and especially that special someone willing to be chairperson of the event are invited to call Ellis at the chamber office, 836-6811, and sign up to help.