Train Day

At Home in Ashland with RCI Builders

RCI Builders has produced well-crafted, high quality homes at an affordable price in the Ashland/Hanover area since 1999. With local founders that call Hanover home themselves, and four communities currently available for building, RCI is committed to Ashland and the community’s future.

Downtown Ashland is thrilled to welcome RCI as a 2019 Ashland Train Day sponsor. To learn more about this dynamic company with local roots, we recently spoke with RCI’s Emily Porter.


Who are the founders of RCI Builders and how has it grown over the years?

The company has been locally owned since the start thanks to our founders, Todd Rogers and Mike Chenault. Patrick Ashley joined the RCI team in 2012 bringing 15 years of home building experience with him and soon after became the third owner.

RCI Builders has grown to become one of central Virginia’s largest locally owned construction companies. We have land positions in over 18 communities and run a highly successful build on your lot program. With 30+ full time employees, RCI does more than 50 million in business per year.

Why did RCI choose to create communities in and around Ashland?

Because we believe this is a great place to live and do business. Not to mention that many of our employees and contractors call Ashland and Hanover home, too.

What communities do you currently have or have planned in Ashland? What makes them unique?

Currently in Ashland we have four communities, Ashland Park, Haley Farm, Hickory Hill, and Lakeview at Luck Farm.

Ashland Park has a few lots remaining in its Village section, which features single family homes from the low $340’s. This quaint neighborhood features walking trails throughout the community with a neighborhood pavilion.

Haley Farm is one of RCI’s newest communities featuring large homesites starting in the $470’s. This is a horse-friendly community, welcoming your family and beloved companions - whether they be canine or equine!

Hickory Hill features single family homes on large lots in Hanover County. Large lots, quiet cul-de-sacs, and a modern neighborhood vibe, Hickory Hill provides the amenities homeowners look for. Only 9 lots remaining in our new section that just opened this year!

Lakeview at Luck Farm features single family homes just outside the town of Ashland, starting in the $500’s. The 1+ acre lot size combined with the ample common space this community offers will give you plenty of elbow room.

RCI is sponsoring the “Touch-a-Truck” area this year. Why did you choose to support Ashland Train Day?

RCI is supporting Train Day because we adore the Town of Ashland! This community has been home to our employees, contractors, and the folks who build with us. We’re thrilled to support a day dedicated to the history and heritage of this town.


Downtown Ashland Association thanks RCI Builders for supporting Ashland Train Day on Saturday, Nov. 2nd. Event participants will find heavy equipment, dump trucks, fire truck, ambulance, and much more. We hope you’ll join us!

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.

Ashland Train Day Awarded 2019 Commemoration Finale Grant

Photo: Diane Stoakley

Photo: Diane Stoakley

Downtown Ashland Association has been awarded a 2019 Commemoration Finale Grant for Ashland Train Day. Train Day, now in its 16th year and one of Downtown Ashland Association’s signature events, is a free and family-friendly festival that draws thousands of visitors to Ashland’s historic downtown each year. Ashland Train Day 2019 will take place Saturday, November 2nd from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm.

“Downtown Ashland Association is thrilled to receive this support, especially in light of our recent re-branding efforts and expanded mission to encourage tourism downtown,” said Maggie Longest, Executive Director of Downtown Ashland Association.

Photo: Diane Stoakley

Photo: Diane Stoakley

The 2019 Commemoration, American Evolution Finale Grants were awarded for 16 events statewide taking place in November. Ashland Train Day and other recipients will be promoted as part of the Virginia Customs, Cultures and Cuisine Festival. The program is administered by Virginia Tourism Corporation.

Through a partnership with The Hanover County Black Heritage Society and the Ashland Museum, Downtown Ashland Association will utilize the grant to launch new permanent exhibits that focus on Virginia’s railway evolution and history, the impact on Virginia’s towns and communities, and stories of local and state railway figures. In addition, a scavenger hunt will bring the evolution of Virginia’s railroads and trackside communities to life for participants of all ages.

“Through these new exhibits, we hope to encourage our visitors to look deeper at the resulting social communities, laborers, travelers, tycoons, and towns,” Longest added. “The Hanover County Black Heritage Society will showcase the impact of railway development in the black community to highlight the experiences of African Americans who worked, and were impacted by the rail industry, including laborers, porters and travelers.”

Photo: Diane Stoakley

Photo: Diane Stoakley

The month-long Virginia Customs, Cultures and Cuisine Festival, presented by TowneBank, will be filled with local, regional and statewide events honoring early Virginia history with cultures and styles that have shaped America over 400 years. This special capstone to the 2019 Commemoration will foster statewide participation, tourism, marketing and promotion, and public events to create a contemporary experience for all ages.

The Virginia Customs, Culture and Cuisine Festival is a strategic part of the larger 2019 Commemoration, that recognizes the 400th anniversary of pivotal 1619 Virginia events that forever changed the trajectory of Virginia and America’s history. These 1619 events include the first official English Thanksgiving in North America, the arrival of the first recorded Africans to English North America, the recruitment of English women in significant numbers to the Virginia colony, the launch of entrepreneurship and innovation in the Commonwealth and more.

We look forward to welcoming you for Ashland Train Day 2019 on November 2nd!