New Television Show Filming Leads to Bonus Steam Engine Weekend at the N.C. Transportation Museum

Release date: 4/10/2012

SPENCER, N.C. – The N.C. Transportation Museum has a bonus weekend of Steam Engine Caboose Train rides Saturday, April 14, as filming for a new television show takes place.
Up in the Air Productions is filming “John and Barney: Have Engine, Will Travel.” The show follows father and son team John and Barney Gramling, owners of the Flagg 75 Coal Engine and the Lehigh Valley #126 Steam Locomotive. They move those engines across the country, giving rides at tourist railroads and museums in 15 states at 18 different railroad museums.
The N.C. Transportation Museum has been hosting the Lehigh Valley #126 Steam Locomotive for “At the Throttle” train rides, allowing visitors to step into the cab and operate the locomotive for a half hour. The Flagg 75 Coal Engine also made runs at the museum during the Easter Bunny Express, pulling the caboose train.
Saturday, April 14, Up in the Air Productions will film the latest installment of “John and Barney: Have Engine, Will Travel.” The show focuses on the steam engines, the locations at which they operate and the working relationship between the Gramlings, which John jokingly describes as a “father-son hobby that’s gotten way out of hand.”
The pair restored both steam engines, breathing new life into the 1930’s era “iron horses.” Both engines were built by Vulcan Iron Works for use in hauling at rock quarries and coal yards. They were restored in the early 1990s and remain in top condition as they pull passenger trains for those wishing to experience the golden age of railroad travel.
Saturday’s filming will focus on those “At the Throttle” train rides. Shooting will also follow the Flagg 75 as it pulls five colorful cabooses, providing rides for museum visitors. Train rides on the regular museum passenger train and the Steam Engine Caboose Train will take place Saturday at 11 a.m., 1, 2 and 3 p.m. These are the final steam engine rides planned before the museum’s Great Southeastern Rail Days Festival, June 2-3, during which the Flagg 75 will again be pulling the caboose train.
Prior filming for “John and Barney: Have Engine, Will Travel” took place at the Heart of Dixie Railroad Museum in Alabama. A preview segment can be found online at
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About the N.C. Transportation Museum
The N.C. Transportation Museum, located in historic Spencer Shops, the former Southern Railway repair facility is located just five minutes off I-85 at Exit 79 in Spencer, N.C., and about an hour from Charlotte, Greensboro or Winston-Salem. The museum is part of the Division of Historic Sites and the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources.
About the Department of Cultural Resources
The N.C. Department of Cultural Resources annually serves more than 19 million people through its 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, the nation’s first state-supported  Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the N.C. Arts Council, and the State Archives. The N.C. Department of Cultural Resources serves as a champion for North Carolina’s creative industry, which employs nearly 300,000 North Carolinians and contributes more than $41 billion to the state’s economy.  To learn more, visit