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Rail cars to pick up Toys for Tots donations along Westmoreland railroad

November 26, 2018 GMT

A caravan of rail cars collecting donations for Toys for Tots again will make its way from East Huntingdon to Hempfield this month.

The 40-mile journey along the Southwest Pennsylvania Railroad will kick off at 8 a.m. Saturday.

The excursion, organized by the North American Railcars Owners Association, has raised nearly $4,500 and collected four pickup truck loads of toys during the last two years.

The railroad runs from East Huntingdon, past Greendance Winery into Mt. Pleasant and along Jacobs Creek and the Westmoreland-Fayette border. It runs parallel for a time to Interstate 70 and then alongside Route 119 and the Five Star Trail into Youngwood. It crosses over Route 119 near South Greensburg and heads toward Greengate Center in Hempfield.

Stops are made along the route, where people in the communities wait along the tracks to hand over new, unwrapped toys and donations for Toys for Tots, which will benefit children in Westmoreland County.

The route will be as follows:

• Depart from the Savage Intermodal Terminal in East Huntingdon at 8 a.m.

• Arrive in Mt. Pleasant around 8:20 a.m.

• Scottdale around 9:40 a.m.

• Tarrs at approximately 10:30 a.m.

• Youngwood for an extended stop around 11:30 a.m.

• Stop for an extended time to collect donations and turn around at Greengate at about 1:15 p.m.

The group will take the same route back to East Huntingdon.

About 20 members of the hobby group decorate their rail cars for the event. Rail cars are small cabs that were once used by railroad companies to inspect and maintain lines.