The Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park and Zoo brought back the guided train tours with a new electric train.
From May until Labour day every year, the train will be guided by the Saskatoon Zoo Society from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.
The Kinsmen Express II also has a ramp and a wheelchair accessible car.
The Saskatoon Zoo Foundation reached out to the Kinsmen Club of Saskatoon when they realized the original Kinsmen Express was worn out.
The Kinsmen Club then worked to raise and donate $100,00 for the Kinsmen Express II.
“On behalf of the Kinsmen we’re so thrilled to be able to present this check and this opportunity for the people of Saskatoon and the zoo. This is a big moment for us to see a refreshed machine for everyone to enjoy for a number of years to come and we’re really excited to take the first ride,” said the Kinsmen Club of Saskatoon.
The Forestry Farm Park and Zoo said they are very grateful for the Kinsmen funding, believing the train is a big reason why people go to the zoo.
“We had a Kinsmen Express for years and years, it was a guest favourite at the zoo. It was something that we utilized every year for the Zoo Gala that people loved,” said Dawn Woroniuk, Saskatoon Zoo Foundation executive director.
“People come to the zoo just to ride the train.”
“We knew the train was literally on its last legs and we went back to the Kinsmen and of course, with everything they do in the community, they came through. They stepped up, they know that this is a legacy for them, so we really couldn’t be here today showcasing the train without the help of the Kinsmen.”
The Kinsmen Express II will be available to ride as of July 1.
“This is a brand new fully electric train, so we don’t run on gas anymore, so there’s no exhaust, no fumes, with a brand new sound system. It just gives us an opportunity to be able to get around and have a little fun at the zoo again,” said Jeff Mitchell, Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park and Zoo Manager.
Train tours are free, included with the price of zoo admission.