Volunteer Overview

Since 1992, the Adirondack Railway Preservation Society (Adirondack Scenic Railroad) has been operated and maintained by volunteers. Our volunteers are what make our excursions exceptional and our nonprofit organization a success. If you have an interest in historic railway preservation, community development, tourism or meeting new people- we have place for you here at the Adirondack Scenic. Our volunteers provide critical support for all aspects of our nonprofit organization and heritage railway. They range from 12 to 90 years of age and are comprised of individuals, couples, families, retirees, railroad workers and more. These volunteers contribute more than 15,000 volunteer hours annually, doing a variety of jobs, ranging from ticketing to car-hosting or by operating the fleet as part of our hours of service crew. Not only will you be helping by making a difference, but you will learn new skills while being on board with us. If you are interested in keeping this valuable piece of history alive please fill out the volunteer application form and broaden your skills here at the Adirondack Scenic Railroad.

Volunteer Application

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Crew News


Positions Available

Café & Car Host

Café & Car Host The car-host is a friendly and positive representative of the railroad. While providing passengers a clean, comfortable and safe environment your duties will include cleaning, trash collection, servicing restrooms and re-stocking coaches. As the car-host tending to an assigned coach you will be responsible for assisting the Conductor by punching tickets and providing passenger counts. In addition to car-hosting we offer individuals the opportunity to volunteer in on-board services. The café host assists the On-board Specialist in the Café Car. This includes preparing and selling food items to passengers as well as selling gift shop merchandise. These are fun and rewarding opportunities for passengers and volunteers alike in preserving the heritage of the Adirondack Scenic Railroad.


Train Crew – Trainman The train crew at the Adirondack Scenic is at the very heart of our railroad. The crew is comprised of a Trainman, Conductor and Engineer all who provide a safe, on-time, and on-plan movement of the equipment. The Trainman is an entry-level position that works with the Conductor in building and managing the train as well as passenger service. This position may lead to becoming a conductor. Requirements and duties the trainman will perform are:

  1. A Trainman is considered part of the Hours of Service Crew. As such, he/she must annually pass the ASR rules test and examination.
  2. The Trainman is an extra set of eyes and ears for the Conductor and Engineer. As such, he/she must be aware of all conditions and activities on and around the train.
  3. The Trainman performs switching movements under guidelines or instructions of the Conductor and Engineer. This includes coupling/uncoupling cars, connecting brakes hoses and setting up head-end power cables.
  4. The Trainman sets or releases the handbrakes on cars.
  5. The Trainman performs both brake tests in conjunction with the Conductor and Engineer.
  6. On a back-up move, the Trainman is responsible for “guarding the point” (i.e., ensuring that track is and remains clear for the train’s movement).
  7. A Trainman watches crossings to be clear of traffic and looks for obstructions on the right of way and for potential hazards.
  8. A Trainman will assist the Conductor with passengers, baggage, bicycles, canoes, kayaks, etc. if requested by the Conductor.
  9. A Trainman is subject to random drug testing per FRA Regulations and NORAC Rules of Operation.
  10. The trainman performs the servicing of passenger cars (i.e., water, sewage, etc.) as well as the adjustment of all utilities (heating, lighting, etc.)
  11. Under the direction of the Engineer, the Trainman assists the Engineer in the servicing of locomotives (i.e., adding oil, water, etc.)
  12. Trainman must be physically capable of performing activities that require lifting of light to medium loads, climbing ladders, bending/squatting, pushing and pulling.

Train Crew – Conductor The train crew at the Adirondack Scenic is at the very heart of our railroad. The crew is comprised of a Trainman, Conductor and Engineer all who provide a safe, on-time, and on-plan movement of the equipment. The Conductor is responsible for safe operation of the train, as well as passenger service. The Conductor insures the train stays on schedule while picking up and dropping of passengers. The conductor also completes en-route paper work while controlling the train movements, in addition to collecting tickets and customer service duties. Additional requirements and duties include:

  1. All Conductors will be qualified as a Trainman prior to serving as Conductor in addition they must successfully pass NORAC and be qualified by the railroads designated individuals.
  2. The Conductor’s primary role is to be in charge of the train. As such, he/she is responsible for compliance with FRA regulations and NORAC Rules of Operation.
  3. The Conductor will communicate with and receive the proper forms from the dispatcher.
  4. The Conductor ensures that proper air brake tests and inspections are made.
  5. The Conductor ensures that Hours of Service regulations are observed.
  6. The Conductor coordinates switching moves with the Trainman and Engineer.
  7. The Conductor determines the loading and unloading points for passenger and directs passenger’s arrangements when and if required.
  8. The Conductor performs/directs the servicing of passenger cars (i.e., water, sewage, etc.) as well as the adjustment of all utilities (heating, lighting, etc.)
  9. The Conductor directs all in-route stops and starts by communicating with the Engineer.
  10. The Conductor serves as the on-board Safety Officer. As such, he/she must be aware of the location and condition of the First Aid Kits, Fire Extinguishers, and Emergency Phone Systems.
  11. In the event of an on-board injury or emergency, the Conductor makes decisions regarding first-aid, obtaining outside professional help, and reporting all incidents to the appropriate authorities.
  12. The Conductor supervises, directs and trains the Trainmen.
  13. The Conductor calls “All Aboard” at the start of each trip and announces station stops as appropriate (may also be assisted by Trainman).
  14. The Conductor directs the boarding and de-boarding of all cars. He/she also helps passengers board and de-board the train safely, and ensures that a crewmember is on duty at every open trap.
  15. The Conductor ensures that all Special Needs passengers are properly boarded/de-boarded and wheelchairs are positioned and tied down correctly.
  16. The Conductor provides a positive customer experience and ensures good customer relations by being patient, professional and pleasant at all times. He/she must also be knowledgeable about schedules, destinations, directions, descriptions, etc. and strive to ensure the comfort and safety of all passengers.
  17. The Conductor completes and submits all required reports following a scheduled run.
  18. The Conductor ensures that the train is locked and secured at the end of the day.
  19. The Conductor is subject to random drug testing per FRA Regulations, and is subject to vision and hearing testing.
  20. Conductors must be physically capable of performing activities that require lifting of light to medium loads, climbing ladders, bending/squatting, pushing and pulling.

Train Crew – Engineer The Engineer is the person who operates the train. This person is in charge of and responsible for operating the locomotive, as well as the mechanical operation of the train, train speed and train handling. Additional requirements and duties include:

  1. An Engineer is considered part of the Hours of Service Crew. As such, he/she must annually pass the ASR rules test and be trained and qualified by ASR Railroad Foreman.
  2. All Engineers must be licensed as a Conductor and Engineer prior to serving as Engineer.
  3. The Engineer has the primary safety control of the train, and runs the locomotive under the authority of the Conductor in accordance with all applicable rules. He/she is in charge of the locomotive and cab.
  4. The Engineer performs FRA required daily inspections of the locomotives.
  5. The Engineer checks oil and water levels on the locomotive(s) and reports irregularities as appropriate. He/she also adds fluids to the appropriate levels as needed.
  6. The Engineer sets and releases the hand brake on locomotives, and must always know the status of the locomotive’s brakes.
  7. The Engineer (in conjunction with the Trainman and Conductor) performs switching moves and conducts all brake tests.
  8. The Engineer must be knowledgeable regarding schedules, destinations, and descriptions of the trip area and be prepared to answer passenger questions.
  9. The Engineer is subject to random drug testing per FRA Regulations and NORAC rules of operation and is subject to vision and hearing testing.
Corridor Maintenance

Train Crew – Corridor Maintenance Corridor maintenance is also referred to as maintenance of way is an aspect of railway maintenance which is designed to ensure that the railway remains safe and navigable. This crew maintains the rail bed (rail, ties, ballast, bridges etc.) while trimming trees and making sure the railway is clear. Additional requirements and duties include:

  1. Volunteers involved in corridor maintenance must be trained on applicable rules and pass NORAC.
  2. Volunteers involved in corridor maintenance perform their tasks under the direction and authority of the Maintenance of Way Supervisor.
  3. Corridor maintenance perform tasks such as brush and tree cutting, track repair, culvert maintenance (i.e., removing obstructions) and tightening track joints.
  4. Where maintenance activities involve the use of machinery and equipment, volunteers must be trained prior to use.
  5. Individuals involved in track maintenance must be physically capable of performing activities that require lifting of light to medium loads, climbing ladders, bending/squatting, pushing and pulling.

Train Crew – Mechanical That volunteer will be under the supervision of the Chief Mechanical Officer. They will assist in diagnosing, repairing and maintaining equipment as required. They may operate shop tools and machines and possibly complete paperwork. Rail road equipment involves a wide range of skills and activities including:

  1. Metal fabrication, (i.e., cutting and forming)
  2. Prep-painting and Painting
  3. Welding
  4. Electrical wiring and electrical system troubleshooting
  5. HVAC system maintenance, trouble shooting and repairs
  6. Plumbing system installation and repairs.

Internships The Adirondack Scenic Railroad internship program allows a diverse group of people with a variety interests, strengths, and goals to participate in an educational environment where they can work with and learn from professionals in related areas of concentration. The Adirondack Scenic offers interns of different backgrounds incredible opportunities in a variety of fields, from maintenance and electrical to marketing and public relations just to name a few. Designed around specific projects, internships are available in the following areas: engineering, event planning, history and programming, education and conservation. If you have a desire to intern in a travel and tourism environment then the Adirondack Scenic Railroad is the place to begin your story.


MiscellaneousVolunteering encompasses many facets of which do not involve operating trains. These opportunities are rewarding and critical to the day to day function of the organization. As a nonprofit organization, we find we are often short staffed and need help with a variety of tasks-everything from helping in our gift shops, assisting with mailings, office work and answering phones, recruiting volunteers, manning booths at trade shows, and more.


If you want to be a part of this organization and are not sure where you would be well suited please feel free to call our Volunteer Coordinator at 315-724-0700 ext. 111 or email volunteer@adirondackrr.com and they can assist you.

Click on the map locations for more information about all of our stations!

Utica Station

Utica Union Station
321 Main Street Utica, NY 13501 1-800-819-2291


Thendara Station

Thendara Station 2568 State Route 28 Thendara, NY 13472 1-800-819-2291


Lake Placid Station

Lake Placid Station 242 Station Street Lake Placid, NY 12946 1-800-819-2291 LP depot - darkened- 741x491

Saranac Lake Union Depot

Saranac Lake Union Depot 42 Depot Street Suite #1 Saranac Lake, NY 12983 1-800-819-2291


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Have a question about our trains or comments about your recent visit, contact us!

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Adirondack Scenic Railroad