The Northern Nevada Railway raised over $100,000 in one month.  (Courtesy photo)

The Northern Nevada Railway raised over $100,000 in one month. (Courtesy photo)

With the call to action for the First National Bank of Ely Challenge Grant, people from all over rallied to help the Nevada Northern Railway, National Historic Landmark railroad. The Gianoli family and First National Bank of Ely offered a challenge grant up to $25,000 to those donating to the railroad. The Challenge Grant lasted from the Dec. 1-31.
In just 30 days, the Nevada Northern Railway raised a lot more than just the $25,000 to be matched. In fact, the railroad raised a whopping $92,479.70. With the added $25,000 from First National Bank of Ely, the total came to $117,479.70.
“It was a very good Christmas, needless to say,” said Executive Director, Mark S. Bassett.  “We are so appreciative to the response by our local community, as well as our friends throughout the country. We thank John Gianoli, the Gianoli family and First National Bank of Ely for stepping up to the plate and leading by example. I am overwhelmed by the response of so many who gave to us during this time. Not only that, but many of our members even increased their levels of membership, or added an additional donation, to double the power of their gift to the railroad. The response was more than imagined and truly exponential.  Again, my hats off and deepest gratitude to all whom helped make this such a special holiday season for us.”
The monies will be used for the continued preservation of the railroad.  Preserving the railroad is a process that has various components.
The Winter Steam Spectacular Photo Shoots in mid-February are a means to preserve the history of the railroad via photography of some of its most historic equipment. While the first Photo Shoot is already sold out, there is some space left on the second Photo Shoot, Feb. 14-16.  The price is $450 ($395/members) and includes some meals.  Two master photographers from California, Steve Crise and Mike Massee, will be directing the night and day shoots and guiding amateur photographers, many of whom will end up taking award-winning shots.
The Nevada Northern Railway is open daily; 8-5 p.m. and 8-4 p.m. on Sundays; closed Tuesdays. The National Historic Landmark railroad was established in 1905 in Ely, Nevada; located halfway between and less than four hours from either Las Vegas or Salt Lake City.