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Martina McBridge went along for the ride

Wide Open Country star Martina McBride rode the rails last week to promote her latest release, her new album “Eleven”. This 4 day, exclusive trip took her all the way from Los Angeles to New York with 11 stops along the way. She performed intimate concerts for fans in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Chicago and New York. The tour was called “Eleven Across America Powered By Amtrak” and this afternoon (Tuesday) at 4:35 on the Puffman Show, I’ll be talking with Christina Leeds from Amtrak Public Relations back in Washington D.C. Christina must have one swell job with the Amtrak people…she got to ride along on McBride’s train ride. The reason McBride’s latest release is entitled “Eleven” is because it’s her 11th studio album and she was recently named the most played female artist on country radio for the past 11 years! My special guest today, Christina from Amtrak, tells me that last week’s tour was environmentally friendly, in keeping with the positive environmental impact of train travel, which is 20% more efficient than air travel and 30% more efficient than automobile travel. Amtrak’s chief marketing officer, David Lim, says “this partnership is perfect for many reasons. We both value connections. Martina wants to connect even more closely with her fans-her music touches so many people, and is relatable to so many American’s lives-and Amtrak’s trains connect people across the country every day.” And speaking of Amtrak, they’re celebrating 40 years of dedicated service as America’s Railroad. Amtrak is the nation’s intercity passenger rail provider and it’s only high-speed rail operator. Last year, despite the floods in the upper mid west, was a record year (and so was 2010, the year before it) for passengers who traveled on Amtrak on more than 300 daily trains-at speeds of up to 150 mph-that connect 46 states, the District of Columbia and three Canadian Provinces. Amtrak operates trains in partnership with 15 states and 4 commuter rail agencies and is also a strong financial performer, achieving an 85% cost-recovery ratio. Living here on the Hi Line, I don’t have to remind you what a “lifeline” Amtrak is to many of us, not to mention all the local people in our communities who are employed by Amtrak. I say “All Aboard” and join me in the “club car” of the Puffman Show this afternoon when we talk trains. My only complaint, I wish they’d stock more Samuel Adams on the Shelby to Winona, Minnesota run!

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