Graffiti usually raises the ire of Cleburne’s finest and earns the tagger a citation. But not during August, at least, not at the Cleburne Railroad Museum. 

“Yes, you can draw on the walls,” Layland Museum Manager Stephanie Montero announced. 

Young and old, residents and folk from far and wide are invited and encouraged to do just that through Aug. 22 in celebration of the current museum’s final fling before closing for remodeling. 

The Graffiti Bash allows visitors graffiti museum walls that will soon be torn down.

Best of all, it’s free. The museum, at 206 N. Main St., is open 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

“Help us celebrate the four wonderful years of the temporary Cleburne Railroad Museum before it closes forever,” Montero said.

But fear not, the museum will return bigger and better albeit not for another year or so.

“We’re expanding into the adjacent spaces at 204 and 208 N. Main St., both of which the Layland has owned for some time,” Montero said. “Construction is expected to begin in October and complete in fall of 2021. But we’re closing at the end of August because we need time to move the exhibits out and get everything prepped for construction.”

Cleburne voters in 2002 approved the creation of the Cleburne 4B Economic Development Corporation, which, through a portion of city sales tax revenues, funds quality of life projects. The railroad museum, one of several 4B projects, details the history of railroads in Cleburne and elsewhere.

Cleburne City Council members last year approved plans to expand the museum.

As for the Graffiti Bash, markers will be provided. 

More than that, Cleburne Mayor Scott Cain said, August represents a chance to toast the current while anticipating the future.

“There’s just something about trains and railroads that fascinates us all no matter how young or old we are,” Cain said. “So I encourage everyone to visit our railroad museum to enjoy what we have now and to learn about all the great things coming.”

In addition to the fun of marking up walls, the museum’s current exhibits will remain in place including an additional electric train display.

“There will be several other fun things for people to enjoy,” Montero said. “We’ll also have renderings, drawings and floor plans of the new museum to come. Our museum volunteer Nick Hefner is working on a Lego model of the new layout so there will be fun things like that too.”

Fret not ferroequinologists.

“Our next exhibit at the Layland will be items from the current railroad museum,” Montero said. “We don’t have a starting date for that yet but wanted to do that since the railroad museum will be closed for more than a year. 

“A lot of the exhibits will go in storage and we won’t have room for everything. But we wanted to keep some things available.”

Layland’s current exhibit, Cardboard Cleburne, continues for now.

For information on that and other Layland exhibits and activities, call 817-645-0934.

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