2017-10-12 / News

Haunted Train rides into 35th year of chills

By Cameron Kerkau

THOMAS TWP. – The Haunted Train Ride in Roethke Park begins its 35th year this weekend on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 13 and 14, and continues the following weekend on Oct. 20 and 21. The train takes off at dark and continues until everyone in line has had a turn.

The Haunted Train Ride is an eight minute train ride through the woods of Roethke Park featuring scary skits performed by local volunteers. In the meantime, a haunted house will also be available. Both are family-oriented activities. A police presence will be in the woods to ensure that only volunteers will be in the area.

“There are some places where if you want to get scared, you can go and get scared. We wanted to be more of a family-friendly event,” said Parks and Recreation Director John Corriveau.

The Roethke train has inhabited the park for almost 60 years. Karl Roethke purchased the train in 1959 and used it for “Cowboys and Indians” themed events. It was acquired in 1982 by the Thomas Township Jaycees who began the Haunted Train tradition. The Haunted Train ride has continued after being acquired by the Thomas Township Kiwanis Club in 1985 and finally given to the township in 2002, where it is run by the Parks and Recreation Department.

“The cool part of the train that we see is the generations of people that have been coming to the event,” said Corriveau.

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