Author Archives: Jim Hamre

All Aboard Washington goals approved as we move forward to 2016


These goals are the result of almost one year’s work beginning with the SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats) and ending with a positive vote at our annual meeting on November 14th.

How can you be a part of reaching these goals? What appeals to you? All of us can find a way to help to reach these goals. It might be by attending events, writing letters, lobbying your legislators, volunteering at an AAWA information booth and more.

Although membership enhancement is not listed, building membership is always a goal of AAWA. If you have a friend or family member who supports public transportation and passenger rail, consider a gift membership. It’s affordable and for most of us, we don’t need “one more thing” to display or dust.

Short Term Goals

  • Increase passenger amenities at King Street Station, including but not limited to:
    • Food and beverage service
    • Clearer, easier to understand announcements
    • Signage for arrivals and departures
    • Newsstand
    • More refined boarding process
    • Better pedestrian access to 4th Avenue, transit, Sounder
  • Expand our cooperation with other organizations including NARP, AORTA, “green” groups, commuter rail, bicycle groups, hospitality and travel industry
  • Increase emphasis on technology via platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, our website and YouTube to expand our reach and message
  • Focus on intermodal connectivity – train to train, train to transit, etc.

Medium Term Goal:*

  • Establish an Amtrak Cascades station stop in Blaine

Long Term Goals:*

  • Restore passenger train service to central/eastern Washington via Stampede Pass
  • Add daytime service to Spokane (route to be determined)
  • Bring Sounder service to Thurston County

*Both medium and long term goals have short term components, for example ramping up local support for the Blaine stop. Working with decision makers, mayors, county commissioners, etc. will be essential as AAWA plants the seeds for daytime passenger train service to central and eastern Washington communities.

Please contact AAWA to volunteer for one or more of the task forces we are creating to accomplish these goals. The SWOT Analyses completed earlier this year included a message from our member­ship: We need greater involvement by the members. This is YOUR opportunity. We hope to hear from you.

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All Aboard Washingtion Annual Membership Meeting is Nov. 14 in Centralia

All Aboard Washington’s 2015 annual membership meeting will be November 14 from 1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m. in the community room at the Centralia Amtrak Station.

IMG_4811We suggest lunch on your own before the meeting at the landmark McMenamins Olympic Club directly across Railroad Avenue from the station, or at another restaurant in downtown Centralia.

Kirk Fredrickson, WSDOT Rail Division, will be our featured speaker. Kirk is the Amtrak Cascades operations supervisor for the Rail Division.

There will also be an election for four positions on the AAWA board of directors. All AAWA members attending the meeting and current in their dues are eligible to vote.

We will have books donated by founding member Jim Neal and several other items available for purchase at the meeting.

Use our Cascades trains or the Coast Starlight to travel to and from the meeting.

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Join us for our next meeting on October 10

Join us for the All Aboard Washington board meeting on October 10 from noon-4:00 p.m. at Basil’s Kitchen, Embassy Suites Hotel, 15920 W. Valley Hwy, Tukwila. The Hotel is two blocks from the Tukwila Sounder/Amtrak station and is accessible from Link light rail by taking the RapidRide F bus towards Renton from the Tukwila International Blvd station.

Most of our time at this meeting will be used for continuing discussions of the SWOT analysis and to develop plans and goals for the next year and into the future. We will work in small groups and then come back together to present the ideas. All are welcome.

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All Aboard Washington’s Summer Fundraiser

All Aboard Washington’s summer fundraiser letter has been postal mailed to all our members. If you don’t want to wait for the letter to arrive and wish to make a contribution online now go to here.

Your donations and dues are All Aboard Washington’s primary source of funds. We appreciate all our members and their financial help.

We thank you.

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Northwest Rail Advocates Meeting – June 6, 2015 – East Glacier Park, MT

The National Association of Railroad Passengers, All Aboard Washington and the Association Oregon of Rail and Transit Advocates are hosting the 2015 Northwest passenger rail advocates membership meeting on Saturday June 6 at the Glacier Park Lodge in East Glacier Park, MT. Register for the meeting here or click on the link on the red bar at the top. On line registration deadline is Thursday May 21. Mailed registrations must be postmarked by May 18. Registration deadlines have been extended! June 1 for on line and May 28 for mailed.IMG_2919

The meeting will take place between the morning arrival of the eastbound Empire Builder and evening departure of the westbound train. We are providing advance information so you can make Amtrak reservations and, if you want to extend your trip, hotel reservations. Availability at Glacier Park Lodge is very limited but there are a number of motels in the village, many within a half mile of the hotel and the Amtrak Station; some have station pickup available. IMG_0591

Here’s some hotel information for East Glacier Park:

Glacier Park Lodge: and select Glacier Park Lodge for reservations. Limited availability. No Internet access. Rates are about $190 and up. Phone: 406.892.2525.

Dancing Bears Inn (approx. 0.3 mi from Lodge and 0.2 mi from Amtrak): AAA approved. Rooms available. Online reservation system. Phone: 406.226.4402. Continental breakfast and Wi-Fi. Amtrak station pickup. Rates are about $110-150. The Dancing Bears Inn is offering a discount from its published rates if you call and tell them you are attending the NARP conference on June 6.

Mountain Pine Motel (approx. 0.5 mi from Lodge and Amtrak): Rooms Available. Online reservation system. Phone: 406.226.4403. Wi-Fi. Amtrak station pickup. Rates are about $60-80.

Jacobson’s Cottages (approx. 0.7 mi from Lodge and Amtrak): No online reservation system. Phone: 406.226.4422. Amtrak station pickup. Rates are about $70-90.

East Glacier Motel & Cabins (approx. 0.6 mi from Lodge and Amtrak: Rooms available. On line reservation system. Phone: 406-226-5593. Amtrak Station pickup. Rates about $65-85.

There are also a number of other motels listed at

Many are outside the immediate village area and thus would be more difficult to get to if you arrive on the Empire Builder.

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AAWA May 9 meeting in Ellensburg

The All Aboard Washington meeting on May 9 in Ellensburg is fast approaching. All are welcome. Here are the details:

The meeting will be from noon-3:00 p.m. at Rodeo City Bar-B-Q, 204 N Main St, Ellensburg. Our featured speakers are Rep. Matt Manweller (R-Ellensburg) and Sen. Judy Warnick (R-Moses lake). Each is a co-chair of the Legislative Rail Caucus in their respective chambers.

Lunch will be by individual settlement.

If you are interest in trying to be matched up with a carpool, contact Lloyd Flem at

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    All Aboard Washington is a 501c3 consumer transportation advocacy group, comprised of nearly 500 people who have a goal of preserving and expanding passenger rail service in the state of Washington. We have been around for 30 years and work closely with other local and national groups, along with political leaders, industry leaders, and other sponsors to improve passenger rail service in our state. We need your help to keep Washington on the right track. Please Donate Today!

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    Mailing Address:
    All Aboard Washington
    P.O. Box 70381
    Seattle, WA 98127-0381

    Primary Contacts
    Lloyd Flem, Executive Director
    360-943-8333 or 360-870-6286

    Harvey Bowen, President