Hinton Mayor pleading case for Amtrak trains - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Hinton Mayor pleading case for Amtrak trains

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MERCER COUNTY (WVVA) -

 Two weekends in the month of October, the New River Train runs from Huntington to Hinton, delivering hundreds of tourists to the annual "Railroad Days" festival. But the festival could be losing a huge partner, with Amtrak planning to ban special trains, altogether. 

Hinton Mayor Joe Blankenship is meeting with Amtrak tomorrow in Washington, DC, in the hopes of keeping the special trains in the Railroad Days festival.  

 City Manager for Hinton Cris Meadows wants Amtrak officials to know how losing the special trains could have long-term effects for local high school students. "The social organizations give away a lot of scholarships to kids graduating from high school and this is the one time a year they earn that money," Meadows says. "They're worried that if the festival were to end, these scholarship opportunities would dry up for these kids."

People in the Hinton community feel that if the New River Train isn't part of the festival, the difference will be seen economically. "You're looking at a million dollar impact that would be a loss for this community and the county," Tony Williams, Summer County Commissioner said. 

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