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Jamie Foster/Contributed The Pacific Surfliner rolls past the Oceano Depot after leaving the Grover Beach Amtrak Station. Riders on Saturday and Sunday of the Railroad Festival can participate in ceremonies in San Luis Obispo and Guadalupe.

Rail excursions, model railroading layouts of all sizes, rail-themed concerts and historical programs are among the attractions on schedule for the second Central Coast Railroad Festival.

Set for Thursday, Oct. 7, through Monday, Oct. 11, the festival will offer activities at railroad, historical and educational sites from Guadalupe to Paso Robles.

Most events will be free, and all will be family-friendly, said Curtis Reinhardt, festival director.

Reinhardt said those who ride the Pacific Surfliner from Grover Beach to San Luis Obispo that Saturday can participate in special activities at the Amtrak Station, and those who ride it to Guadalupe on Sunday can join activities at the Amtrak Platform.

On the Friday and Monday of the festival, package excursions aboard the Coast Starlight will take passengers from San Luis Obispo to rail-themed wineries in the Paso Robles and back via Cuesta Grade.

A limited number of tickets for the wine rail excursions can be purchased from the Wine Wrangler in Paso Robles.

Trip specifics and Amtrak discount ticket information is available on the festival website at www.ccrrf.com.

Railroad-themed concerts will be presented in three cities during the festival.

A "Concert of Railroad Music," featuring the San Luis Obispo County Band, will take place Sunday afternoon at the Rotary Bandstand in Heritage Square Park in the Village of Arroyo Grande.

"Big Rock Candy Mountain - Songs & Stories of the Railroad Hobos" will be presented Friday in Paso Robles, and a "Circle of Railroad Songs" family concert is set for Saturday evening in San Luis Obispo.

Eighteen model railroad layouts will be featured during the festival.

Major operating club layouts will include the giant Free-mo SLO Group's HO scale layout Saturday and Sunday at Runels Barn in Arroyo Grande.

San Luis Obispo Model Railroad Association will display an HO scale layout Thursday night in Grover Beach and N, HO and G scale layouts with Dennis Pearson's Pacific Coast Railway replica Sunday at the Oceano Depot.

The Proto:87 store's demo layout will be on display Sunday in Grover Beach, and Doc Burnstein's Ice Cream Lab's G scale Village Railroad in the Arroyo Grande store will be available for viewing during business hours.

Numerous private home and garden layout tours also have been set up by the Model Railroads of Southern California organization. Details, including a map, can be found on the festival website.

For more information, visit the website or call the festival office at 773-4173. See this story in Friday's Adobe Press.

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