Stars & Stripes Special

Stars and Stripes Logo

Honoring Our Heroes

This Independence Day weekend – on Saturday, July 3 – all active military and veterans are invited to ride the train for Free when accompanied by at least one other ticketed passenger. This BOGO Free admission offer is available to those who served or who are currently-serving in the United States Military – Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard as well as members of the Reserves, National Guard, U.S. Public Health Commissioned Corps and NOAA Commissioned Corps.

CAC card, DD Form 1173 ID card, or DD Form 1173-1 ID cards must be available to be presented to the ticket agent upon request.

American War Vignettes

In partnership with reenactors from throughout central Alabama, a variety of war-time campsites through the years will be displayed on the HODRRM campus. In addition to featuring an authentic Mountain Howitzer cannon, the actors in full time-period costume will share the history and educational demonstrations of each era, including:Revolutionary War Soldier Logo

  • The American Revolution
  • Seminole Wars
  • Civil War
  • WWI
  • WWII
  • Korean War

Honoring the Glory of Old Glory

Come celebrate the birthday of our nation onboard the vintage train. Bring a picnic lunch. Enjoy the flags on display throughout the grounds, compliments of Calera Fire Department.

Event Details

  • Board the Calera & Shelby Railroad for a relaxing approximate 75-minute ride through the woods of Shelby County.
  • Veterans and active military members will receive their ticket Free when accompanied by a paid ticketed friend or family member. (Limit of one complimentary ticket per order. ID will be requested for verification at Will Call.)
  • Patriotic displays and American war reenactors will be featured throughout the grounds.
  • Food vendors will be on the grounds for lunch, snacks, drinks or sweet treats!
  • The Shelby & Southern Narrow Gauge Steam Railroad will be operating with departures throughout the day. Purchase tickets at the S&S Depot next to the Giftshop.

Ticket Information

Plan to arrive approximately 60 minutes prior to your scheduled train departure. Be advised, interstate travel to the museum, via I-65, is persistently slow. An early arrival to allows you time to:

  • Pick up your tickets at the red and yellow Calera Depot next to the train
  • Use the restrooms at the Gift Shop
  • Tour the reenactors’ vignettes
  • Walk the collection of railroad equipment in Clark Yard
  • Visit our working Signal Garden
  • Take photos
  • Shop the Gift Shop, and
  • Get in position to board the train.

Ticket Prices

  • Ages 2-Adult: $17
  • Child under 24 months: Free
  • Military/Veteran tickets: Free with purchase of at least one regularly priced coach ticket
  • Caboose tickets (limited availability): $25
  • Locomotive tickets (limited availability): $35


Get Tickets!

*any related notations concerning taxes, any convenience fees, etc.


Note: Ticket prices include taxes but not convenience fee. $3.00/ticket purchased on web or $4.00/ticket if purchased through the ticket call center at (205) 757-8383.

Please Note:

Our team has worked hard to ensure a safe and relaxing time for your family onboard our train. Please be sure to follow all verbal directions from your car hosts and adhere to all posted safety and sanitation guidelines on the train and throughout the grounds.

Be Aware of Federal Health Mandates:

The Heart of Dixie Railroad Museum operates under the guidelines of the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). COVID restrictions regarding masks, social distancing, etc. will be based on any active FRA mandates at the time of the event.

Limited Accessible Seating Available:

If someone in your party needs to reserve a space for a wheelchair, please add all other passengers' tickets to your order first and at checkout, you will be asked to add the ADA space reservation to complete your order.

Infant Tickets

Children 0-24 months ride free of charge though required to sit in an adult’s lap at all times. When ordering your tickets, select "Coach Infant" for no additional charge. If you did not order an infant ticket with your initial order, notify the ticket agent upon your arrival at the Calera Depot that you have a child 0-24 months that will sit in your lap, and you will receive an infant ticket. For your safety, strollers and infant car seat carriers are not permitted aboard the train.

Wheelchair Accessibility

Our train has wheelchair accessible accommodations on the Long Island 2972 and Open Air Car 1121. Wheelchair loading and unloading occurs at the Calera Depot with a MobiLift wheelchair lift. We do not have wheelchair boarding capabilities at stops such as Ozan Winery. Note: A person in your party must be in a wheelchair to purchase this ticket. This is only a space for a wheelchair, no seat is provided.

Click here for more accessibility information.


Snacks and drinks are available for purchase at our Gift Shop and at the Meadow. Purchases at the Meadow are for cash only.

The Heart of Dixie Railroad Museum's policy is that no food or drinks be brought on the train. Please finish your refreshments before boarding the train at the depot. This policy also applies to any intermediate train stops where food or drinks may be sold.


There are no working restrooms on our vintage railcars. Please use the restroom at the Gift Shop prior to boarding.