Somers Preservation Group Breaks Ground on Pavilion

By Beacon Staff

The Somers Company Town Project has begun construction on a new pavilion to protect an historic steam train that once ran at the former tie plant. The groundbreaking of the new facility took place May 1.

The locomotive, S-2, is currently located at the end of the Great Northern Rails-to-Trails path, across the street from the post office. The engine once ran inside the tie plant and was sold in the 1980s to a local museum south of Kalispell. When the museum closed, a group of Somers residents banded together to bring it back to its hometown.

In May 2010 the Somers Company Town Project was formed to build a pavilion to protect the old train and a small museum nearby to record the history of the town. The pavilion will be about 100 feet west of the locomotive’s current site and will include a museum.

“It was truly a proud moment for those original Somers Town Company Project members,” said volunteer John Sullivan. “They started raising money one raffle ticket at a time and I’m sure they probably wondered if they’d ever make it.”

On May 16, the Somers Company Town Project will host its fourth annual “Spirits of the Valley” Wine Tasting Extravaganza at the Best Western Flathead Inn and Suites from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. The event includes hors d’oeuvres, desserts, live entertainment, silent auction and wine. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at any Sliters Hardware Store or at the door.

Anyone interested in joining the group or volunteering their time to preserve Somers’ history should contact Carolyn Wondrow at (406) 857-2373.

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