Train Day 2019 Arrives in Downtown Ashland on Saturday, Nov. 2nd


Ashland Train Day, a signature event of Downtown Ashland Association now in its 17th year, is set to take place in the heart of historic downtown Ashland on Saturday, Nov. 2nd from 10am-5pm. Ashland Train Day is a free and family-friendly event.

With a list of activities and attractions that continues to grow each year, Ashland Train Day brings thousands of families and railfans into downtown each November to share in Ashland’s love of trains.

“This November we will host all of the Ashland Train Day favorites -- live CSX and Amtrak trains rolling right through the middle of our event, real railroad equipment, model trains, touch-a-truck, live music, food, and more,” said Maggie Longest, Executive Director of Downtown Ashland Association.

“New this year, thanks to a grant from American Evolution as part of the 2019 Commemoration, we are excited to partner with Ashland Museum and The Hanover County Black Heritage Society to present a scavenger hunt and new exhibits to take visitors on the journey of building Virginia’s railroads and the communities like Ashland that were shaped and impacted,” Longest added.


  • LOCOMOTIVES: Up to 18 CSX freight trains and Amtrak passenger trains will pass through the center of the event.

  • RAILROAD HISTORY & LORE: Two museums, three storytellers, and a 10-stop scavenger hunt bring Virginia’s railroad history to life. (Sponsored by the 2019 Commemoration)

  • MODEL TRAINS: 17 model trains on display—every size and scale, including lego and racing trains. Plus, vintage railroad equipment and a red caboose!

  • TOUCH-A-TRUCK: Gear heads of all ages will be amazed at the display of heavy equipment, fire truck and ambulance, dump trucks and tractors.(Sponsored by RCI Builders)

  • KID ZONE: A world of fun with a bouncy house, obstacle course, and games. (Sponsored by McKinney & Company)

  • LIVE MUSIC STAGE: Bluegrass, country, and old-time musicians take center stage. (Sponsored by CSX)

  • CHILDREN’S TRAIN RIDES: Two kiddie trains invite families to tour the festivities. All aboard! (Sponsored by Carey Construction Services)

  • ASHLAND TRAIN DAY AMBASSADORS: Cinder and Tinder, the lovable train engineer bears will be on hand for hugs and photos.

  • VIRTUAL RAILFAN: 7 million viewers tune in every month to watch trains live-streamed and Ashland is one of the site’s most popular locations. Wave to thousands watching on Train Day!

  • HEADQUARTERS: More than 100 community volunteers make the event possible, along with first responders from Ashland, Hanover, Randolph-Macon College, and CSX. (Sponsored by Wawa)

A detailed schedule, map (including parking and trolley pick-up locations), and full list of vendors will be made available closer to the event on the Train Day page.

Fall Brings Fun & Fresh Starts to Downtown Ashland

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Fresh starts and fall fun have Downtown Ashland bustling all season long. Join us for family-friendly events, exciting opening celebrations at downtown businesses, and track progress on three dynamic projects that Downtown Ashland Association has dubbed #Ashland2021.

“Looking to the future, while preserving the past: that’s the central idea behind #Ashland2021,” said Maggie Longest, Executive Director of Downtown Ashland Association. “Downtown Ashland Association is proud to join the Town of Ashland and Amtrak to invest in our historic downtown.”

As part of #Ashland2021:

1) The Town of Ashland is investing in its Town Hall to improve public meeting spaces, make a new home for the Ashland Farmer’s Market, create a public park, and more.

2) Amtrak is investing in Ashland’s historic train station to improve accessibility (ADA compliant), preserve historic character, create more seating, and replace landscaping. These improvements ensure that Ashland can accommodate and welcome ALL travelers. 

3) Downtown Ashland Association is investing in planters to make Downtown Ashland more inviting and walkable. The finished project will link Ashland Theatre, Randolph-Macon College, and other amenities to restaurants, shops, and lodging.

More information on all projects, including renderings, timelines and project-specific contact information can be found at here.

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Fall is also full of fantastic events for the entire family. Whether you’re a train-lover, a beer-lover -- or both -- Downtown Ashland is the place to be for fall fun!

Festivals & Events

· Sept. 27th & Oct. 25th (5-8pm): Ashland Fourth Fridays
A celebration of arts and culture in Downtown Ashland, featuring special events the fourth Friday of every month.

· Oct. 19th (1-7pm): Off the Rails Craft Beer Festival
Sip craft brews trackside under a shady canopy of trees in historic downtown. This event is family-friendly and a fun fall day full of craft beers, local food, & great bands! Sponsored by Hanover Arts & Activities Center.

· Oct. 20th & Nov. 10th (3pm): Richmond Symphony Metro Collection
Join Richmond Symphony at Randolph-Macon College for intimate, chamber orchestra concerts that allow you to get up close and personal with the musicians.

· Nov 2nd (10am-4pm): 17th Annual Ashland Train Day
A signature event of Downtown Ashland Association, Ashland Train Day is a FREE event for the whole family. More information, including a schedule of the day’s events will be available soon.

· Nov. 30th (all day): Small Business Saturday
Support your community and #shopsmall in Downtown Ashland. Stroll Ashland’s historic small town streets lined with independent shops, markets, eateries, and find unique gifts for everyone on your list.

Openings & Celebrations

· Sept. 5th: Opening -- Yoga on Center
Owner Lorie Lower celebrated the grand opening of her sun-filled, historic trackside studio at 403 S. Center Street. The studio welcomes yogis of all abilities for classes seven days a week.

· Sept. 12th (4-6pm): Opening -- Dominion Energy Innovation Center Coworking Space
Beginning in September, DEIC will open its doors as a coworking space and hub for local entrepreneurs. Tour the space and meet the team at this open house.

· Sept. 20th (6-8pm): Opening -- ReAwaken Spa
Join owner Shanda Hileman for a grand opening of her new full-service spa in the re-vamped space of the former Herald-Progress building.

· Oct. 16th (5-6pm): 2nd Anniversary Celebration -- Calm Air Pain Therapy
Celebrating the second year in Downtown Ashland, John Colletti owner of Calm Air Pain Therapy offers therapeutic treatments to stop nerve pain, an innovative alternative to opioid pain killers.

· Oct. 26th: Ribbon Cutting -- Center of the Yarniverse
After a successful first year in business, Center of the Yarniverse is moving to a bigger and better location across the tracks! Join owner Stacey Williamson for a ribbon cutting and to see the ample new space at 100 N. Railroad Avenue.

· Nov. 9th: Opening -- Ashland Coffee and Tea & More
Join owner Cate Hawks as she launches ACT&More under a new and innovative business model -- operating collaboratively among six female entrepreneurs, including Center of the Yarniverse, CaryTown Teas, Pearl's Bake Shoppe, and JuiceBar.

For more exciting events taking place in Downtown Ashland, visit Downtown Ashland Association’s Events Calendar and subscribe to “Get Centered” -- Downtown Ashland Association’s monthly enewsletter.