Steam engines puffed through Granite Falls loaded with ore beginning in 1892 when the Everett and Monte Cristo Railway started operating.
Gold mining in Monte Cristo lasted little more than a decade, but trains continued to chug through Granite Falls loaded with lumber and taking tourists to the long-gone Big Four Inn near the entrance to the Big Four ice caves.
Four decades ago, a Granite Falls English teacher started Railroad Days to honor the town's past and bring people together on the first weekend of October, according to the Granite Falls Chamber of Commerce.
The tradition continues this Saturday.
The day is expected to kick off with a 5K run starting at 9 a.m. Registration forms are available online at http://tinyurl.com/8w4msta or at Mountain Loop Fitness, the former Gold's Gym. People also can sign up between 7:45 a.m. to 8:45 a.m. Saturday behind the Granite Falls Fire Station, 116 South Granite Ave.
Kids participating in the Children's Parade should line up at 11 a.m. with a parent or guardian at Playa Bonita, 206 East Stanley St. That parade is expected to begin at 11:30 a.m.
The traditional parade is scheduled to start at noon Saturday, and feature local groups, politicians and bands, plus the Seafair pirates. Grand marshal for the parade is expected to be Fred Cruger.
Businesses will be open and street vendors will be on hand. A carnival will be in town the whole weekend between Alfy's and IGA, and the Granite Falls Historical Museum will be open.
The event combines with reunions at Granite Falls High School.
For more information, call City Hall at 360-691-6441 or the Chamber of Commerce at 360-691-7733.
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