Members of the Coalition for Sustainable Transportation (COAST), the Alliance for Sustainable and Equitable Regional Transportation (ASERT), Coastal Rail Now (CRN) and local elected officials from Santa Barbara and Ventura counties will be riding the train May 7 as part of National Train Day.

The train will depart the Santa Barbara Train Station, 209 State St., at 9:20 a.m. May 7 for the trip to Carpinteria, and is expected back in Santa Barbara at 10:15 a.m. Magician Mark Collier will be riding the rails, too, and entertaining guests along the route.

Upon arrival back in Santa Barbara, children can decorate train cookies, Amtrak will be giving aways hats and activity books, and officials will hold a news conference at 10:30 a.m. Speakers will address the vital role rail plays in creating a sustainable community, the importance of rail in relieving congestion on Highway 101, and the necessity of working across county lines. Videographer Larry Nimmer will capture it all for later showing online. 

The public is invited to ride along.

Click here for more information on Coastal Rail Now (CRN).

— Dennis Story is chairman of Coastal Rail Now (CRN).