RIPARIUS - Scenic train passengers and local ice cream lovers may not be privy to milk shakes or hot dogs this summer as Hudson River Railroad informed Warren County officials that it will not be operating the Caboose at Riparius Station.
"It just wasn't profitable. That's all there is to it," Warren County Parks and Recreation Director Paul Butler said April 28. "The operator told me last week that they weren't planning on opening it."
The Caboose is a rail car located on an auxiliary track adjacent to the station. It was purchased a decade ago by Warren County for $50,000 and has served as a concession stand at the site since.
"From what I have been told, it's the electrical bills that makes it unprofitable," Johnsburg Supervisor Sterling Goodspeed said. "It does draw people, just not income."
The Caboose is regularly frequented by local residents seeking ice cream or lunch, Goodspeed said.
County officials said that they plan on advertising the available business space.
"We can't let this thing lay vacant all summer," Hague Supervisor Dan Belden said. "There has to be somebody who would be interested in running it."
Supervisors said that they may contractually require any railroad operators to run the Caboose in the future.