Railroad Museum accepts $1K grand prize for winning Parade of Lights in Medina

Photos by Ginny Kropf: Jim Hancock, left, head of Medina’s Tourism Committee and organizer of the Parade of Lights, presents the Grand Prize trophy to Caitlyn Klotzbach with the Medina Railroad Museum. The trophy also came with a check for $1,000. At right are Dave Miller and Cathie Valley, members of the parade committee.

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent Posted 5 February 2020 at 10:21 am

MEDINA – The Medina Railroad Museum’s first efforts to enter a float in Medina’s Parade of Lights on Nov. 30 earned them a Grand Prize trophy and a check for $1,000.

On Friday, Jim Hancock, Dave Miller and Kathie Valley, members of Medina’s Tourism Committee which sponsors the Parade of Lights, presented the trophy to Medina Railroad Museum personnel. Accepting the award was Caitlyn Klotzbach, director of group sales for the museum and daughter of the museum’s director Janine Klotzbach. Caitlyn is also the granddaughter of the museum’s founder Marty Phelps.

Hancock is head of the Tourism Committee and organizer of the parade. Valley and Miller work with the judges and Valley escorts them through the staging area prior to the parade.

On hand for the trophy presentation were volunteers and personnel who helped work on the float. Michael Greybill works on buildings and grounds at the museum, Amanda Majors runs the ticket booth and gift shop, Brodie George is the layout operator and conductor on special trains and Grace Stewart is volunteer coordinator.

Photo by Tom Rivers: The Medina Railroad Museum’s float is shown Nov. 30 during the 11th annual Parade of Lights. The museum was named the grand prize winner in the parade that included about 45 participants.

The float was a miniature replica of a railroad station. It was originally designed by Phelps and constructed by the Amish. For several years, it has been towed to train events to promote the railroad museum. It also doubles as Santa’s house at the North Pole during runs of the Polar Express.

Turning it into an award-winning float took hours of work. The crew worked from noon to 9 p.m. one day just covering the roof with lights, then it took another day to put lights on the sides.

“They did a tremendous job on their float,” Hancock said. “It was absolutely fabulous.”

Judges were representatives from major sponsors of the parade. Entries were judged on the number of lights, crowd appeal and creativity, Hancock said.

Volunteers and employees of the Medina Railroad Museum pose with the Grand Prize trophy the museum won for its entry in the Parade of Lights in November. From left are Michael Greybill, who works on buildings and grounds; Amanda Major, who mans the ticket booth and oversees the gift shop; Caitlyn Klotzbach, daughter of director Janine Klotzbach and granddaughter of the museum’s founder Marty Phelps; Brody George, layout operator and conductor on special trains; and Grace Stewart, volunteer coordinator.

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