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Summerland gang seeks train robbers

Garnett Valley Gang has been robbing tourist train passengers for charity since 1995
Since 1995, the Garnett Valley Gang has been staging train robberies at the Kettle Valley Steam Railway in Summerland. Proceeds from these robberies are donated to charities. The gang is now looking for new members to assist them. (Summerland Review file photo)

Wanted: train robbers.

While the terminology resembles old law and order posters, the phrase could also be used by the Garnett Valley Gang in Summerland.

Since the Kettle Valley Steam Railway began its tourist train operations in 1995, the gang has staged train robberies during special train rides.

READ ALSO: Okanagan’s only operating heritage steam train needs our help

READ ALSO: Gang continues robberies for charity

However, the number of riders in this gang has been dwindling. Bryan Slater, a member of the gang, would like to see more gang members added to the roster.

Slater said riding with the gang is a special experience. “It’s an awesome group of individuals and it’s great camaraderie,” he said.

Because of COVID-19 restrictions, the gang has not been able to hold robberies over the past two years, but organizers are planning to resume the robberies in the summer of 2022.

Wendy Davis, secretary for the gang, said members should be compotent riders who are also good entertainers. There are also opportunities for some people to provide entertainment to passengers on the train.

“It’s a huge commitment,” Davis said, adding that the gang normally has 10 performance dates through the summer. Often, these dates have robberies on two train rides. Rides on Father’s Day and on long weekends tend to sell out in advance.

The money collected from the rides goes to charitable organizations, and over the past 23 years, more than $200,000 has been distributed.

Those interested in applying to join the gang are asked to email Davis at

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John Arendt

About the Author: John Arendt

John Arendt has worked as a journalist for more than 30 years. He has a Bachelor of Applied Arts in Journalism degree from Ryerson Polytechnical Institute.
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