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Old-West train festival in Utah cancelled due to shutdown

December 28, 2018
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This Dec. 28, 2011 image from video shows a steam engine at the Golden Spike Winter Steam Festival in Promontory, Utah. This year's festival has been cancelled due to the partial federal government shutdown. (Marc Weaver/The Deseret News via AP)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — An annual northern Utah event honoring American West railroad history is being canceled due to the government shutdown.

The Winter Steam Festival at the Golden Spike National Monument northwest of Ogden was scheduled for Friday and Saturday. A U.S. government webpage for the event shows it was cancelled due to the ongoing shutdown.

The festival draws train enthusiasts and photographers to watch as steam billows in the wintery air as the old trains move along the tracks.

KSL-TV reports that Box Elder County commission chair Stan Summers says the county was willing to spend $21,000 to salvage the festival, but that trying to coordinate with federal employees and volunteers was too difficult due to the shutdown.

Summers says he’s disappointed in government officials and politicians don’t’ realize the impact shutdowns have on states and counties.

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