Public invited to celebrate train’s birthday

The public is invited to help celebrate the 125th birthday of “Paulo,” the oldest surviving operating plantation locomotive in Hawai‘i.

The event will also commemorate the birthday of Paul Isenberg for whom the locomotive is named. Isenberg, whose birthday is April 15, is the owner of Lihu‘e Plantation.

Currently, Paulo is at the train house where its boilers are being worked on. Grove Farm officials are hopeful the work will be done in time for the Saturday festivities a day ahead of the official birthday.

Paulo was manufactured in Dusseldorf, Germany, in1887 at the Hohenzollern Works and shipped to the Koloa Sugar Co. where it was in a until 1920.

In the interim, Wainiha, another historic plantation locomotive, is being used for the monthly train rides scheduled the second Thursday of each month.

Wainiha, having the distinction of ending the 78-year run of Hawaiian steam-powered sugarcane trains in 1957, was put into service at the Haleko rails for the July monthly train day after Paulo was brought to the train house following its participation in the annual Koloa Plantation Days parade in July 2011.

From 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.  Saturday, the Grove Farm Museum is offering free train rides, cupcakes and balloons.

Additionally, the Grove Farm Museum at 4050 Nawiliwili Rd. will be offering free tours of its site.

Visit www.kauaitrains.com for more information, or call 245-3202.

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