Bob’s Train and “JOMAR,” the Private Railroad Car of John and Mable Ringling

Bob's Train restaurant, Sarasota

Bob’s Train

Tucked away in a semi-abandoned storage and industrial area on the edge of downtown Sarasota is Bob’s Train, a restaurant in an old train car run by a passionate circus enthusiast. In addition to getting a reasonable lunch, one can tour three train cars loaded with the owner’s collection of pictures and other memorabilia from the long history of the Ringling circus. For anyone interested in trains or circus history, a visit to Bob’s Train is a must-do experience.

John Ringling and his brothers built an empire out of the circus business, and John and Mable Ringling began wintering in Sarasota Florida in 1907. They ultimately helped shape the community and gave it some of the cultural landmarks that Sarasota is famous for today. A bit of this history is attached to Bob’s Train, in the form of the “JOMAR – The Private Railroad Car of John and Mable Ringling.” It is the newer of two private cars owned by the Ringlings, and in need of restoration.

JOMAR - The Private Railroad Car of John and Mable Ringling

JOMAR – The Private Railroad Car of John and Mable Ringling

The Private Railroad Car of John and Mable Ringling

JOMAR – The Private Railroad Car of John and Mable Ringling

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3 Comments on “Bob’s Train and “JOMAR,” the Private Railroad Car of John and Mable Ringling

  1. Circus stuff, old trains, and a reasonable lunch all in one place???
    I’m in!

    Someone is trying to turn a few train cars into a restaurant near to where I live.
    It’s been sitting there for 10 years, but never seems to open.
    The owner must be off track about it.

  2. Such an important project for the culture of the city of Sarasota’s history and the history of the circus culture in this country. In other countries the circus is as revered as opera, ballet, orchestra and other forms of performance art. Go on and finish, I would like to attend the grand opening when it is finished! Movie stars and famous people blessed the company of the Ringling family and it is a look at our past in a simpler time and place of dreams now for most of us!

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