While Governor-elect Chet Culver will take the oath of office Friday in Des Moines, other inaugural events are being held in Sioux City and Iowa City. Iowans who want to attend Thursday’s “One Iowa Gala” concert in Iowa City might consider riding a train.
Dennis Miller, president and CEO of the Iowa Interstate Railroad, says the ride aboard the so-called “Inaugural Express” is free. They’ll leave Des Moines around 12:30 P.M. from the old Rock Island depot downtown, with stops in: Newton around 1:30, Grinnell around 2:15 and Marengo at 3:15. Miller says they’ll arrive in Iowa City in plenty of time to make it to the big event.
Culver and Lieutenant Governor-elect Patty Judge will host an event at Old Capitol, followed by the “Gala” featuring entertainer Al Green. The University of Iowa has lined up buses to take people to Hancher Auditorium for the inaugural events. They’ll leave Iowa about 30 minutes after the event is over, with stops along the way in Marengo, Grinnell and Newton before reaching Des Moines.
Miller says a rare event like the inauguration of a governor seemed appropriate enough to arrange for the special transportation. Miller says there are a lot of “rail fans” in Iowa and it’s a good way to get a lot of people to the event during the wintertime. The train can carry 375 passengers and free tickets need to be reserved in advance. For more information, call (319) 466-4245, send e-mail to InauguralSpecial@aol.com “.