Me and the WK&S

Please Note: This is not the official WK&S web site. For information on tickets, schedules, directions and charters, go to the official WK&S web site at... www.kemptontrain.com

The Wanamaker, Kempton & Southern is a small tourist railroad located in the northern tip of Berks County Pennsylvania. Although small, the WK&S is largely unmatched in terms of authenticity and scenic diversity.

img

A typical WK&S consist includes a locomotive, one to three coaches, the open gondola car and a caboose.

Consider that the WK&S is fully a volunteer operation. There are no paid employees. There are no grants or other public funding. This operation is made possible through ticket, gift shop and food sales as well as the hard work of one of the most talented and dedicated group of people you'll find.

The information on this web site is gathered from my personal experiences at the WK&S as well as experiences from others who have worked at or rode the WK&S. Story and photo contributions are welcome. If you know something about the WK&S that you don't see here, I'd love to hear from you. I've done my best to ensure the accuracy of information on these pages, but I am far from a historian and haven't done any hardcore research to confirm all my facts.

I've been riding the WK&S ever since I can remember. My family had been riding before I was born. As a child, I would ride the line as many times as I could talk my parents or grandparents into taking me. But it wasn't just the railroad that kept me coming back to the Kempton area. My parents and I spent our winters skiing at nearby Hahn Mountain. And a favorit fishing spot of my grandparents was Leaser Lake, just over the hill from Wanamakers. I remember hearing the steam whistle from the lake. Then I'd start bugging my grandparents to stop by the railroad for a train ride.

As an adult, I began volunteering at the WK&S back in 1990 and have been at it ever since. I've worked my way through all the crew positions including Brakeman, Conductor, Fireman and Engineer. In 1994 I had to relocate to northern Virginia, but I continued working at the WK&S about one weekend per month during the summer. Eventually my wife and I got an RV. Now we incorporate railroad weekends into our RV trips.

img

Me running WK&S #734. Photo by Larry Fisher.

img

Stuck at the railroad after a suprise snowstorm; October 29, 2011.

img

Me running WK&S #7258.

img

Our first little RV.

img

Our dog Belle likes riding the train.

img

Scruffy could care less.

img

My wife and I getting married at Wanamaker. That was a cold December Friday before the 1997 Santa trains.

img

Me during my young brakeman days standing with my grandparents.

img

Me hanging off #582 in 1980.