Depot open for National Trains Day

The front of the Grand Junction Railroad Depot, circa 1906. Kathy Jordan photo collection.

In two days, it will be May again and the time of year when the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the Colorado Historical Society celebrate Archaeology and Historic Preservation Month.

To celebrate National Train Day, Saturday, May 7, The Friends of the Grand Junction Depot invite the community to join them in greeting California Zephyr passengers arriving on the eastbound train, estimated arrival 10:30 a.m., and the westbound train, estimated arrival 3:30 p.m.

The grand old depot is going to be open so the public can get a glimpse inside while waiting for the trains to arrive and depart.

The historic 1906 Grand Junction Railroad Depot, 119 Pitkin Ave, will be open from 10 a.m. until the last passenger leaves the station.

If you own, or if you are thinking about buying an historic home, you are not going to want to miss the “Old House Forum”.

Daniel Gartner, an architect with Chamberlin Architects, put the forum together.

Gartner said: “After attending the February Saving Places Conference in Denver put on by Colorado Preservation Inc., I had the idea that we could do something similar here in Grand Junction. It struck me that we have a large community of people who own historic houses. They are maintaining and repairing their homes, remodeling, adding on, and landscaping them, often without the benefit of some of the experience and knowledge that is available from local architects and other professionals.

“By having a series of presenters talk about how to go about preserving, rehabilitating or restoring these properties, I hope we can get people excited about what they have and interested in keeping these buildings around for a long time to come.”

The Old House Forum will be from 7 to 9 p.m. May 5 at the Grand Junction High School Math Building.

Ten classes are available:  Preservation resources; colors for your home; historic designation and grant process; identifying house styles; maintenance and repairs; remodeling and additions; appropriate landscaping; defining preservation terms; and classical detailing. Each class will be 30 minutes with a 10-minute break between.

If you have any questions, call Kris Ashbeck at 244-1491.

The Museum of Western Colorado is also offering several activities.

May 7 will be Spring Day at Cross Orchards Historic site, 3073 F Road. Adults $4; seniors $2.50; kids (3-12 years) and immediate family $10; museum members free.

On May 12, Curator of Anthropology Zebulon Miracle will lead a tour of rock art sites in northwest Colorado. Space is limited. Cost is $50 per person.

The Daily Sentinel plans to publish the “I Spy” downtown scavenger hunt contest on Sunday, May 15. This is a page of photographs of architectural details on some of our downtown buildings.

Just fill out the form with the correct building location and mail it to Downtown Scavenger Hunt, 440 N. Seventh St., Grand Junction 81501. The entry with the first postmark and the most correct answers will win a one-year family membership to the museum.

On May 20, an evening tour of downtown is planned. Participants should be at the museum, Fourth Street and Ute Avenue, before 5:30 p.m. Admission will be $5.

Become more familiar with the history of Grand Junction and test your geocaching skills at the same time. Geocaching is a treasure hunt using global positioning systems. Pick up a packet at the museum and try to solve puzzles around downtown using their GPS units, or bring your own GPS and follow the hunt. Visit the museum anytime during museum hours to pick up a packet or download the packet at

The new exhibit at The Sterling T. Smith Educational Tower will debut in May. The view of the downtown area from the top of the museum tower is a must-see.

On Thursday May 19, Mesa County Historical Society and the Museum of Western Colorado will have Terry Hammer as their featured speaker. Hammer, a local Colorado military history expert, will give a program on forts on the Western Slope and the military exploration routes through the area. Bring your lunch and enjoy the presentation at noon at the Whitman Educational Center, 248 S. Fourth St.

For questions on any museum events, call 970-242-0971.

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Kathy Jordan is retired from The Daily Sentinel. E-mail .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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