Award-winning Tourism Experience Welcomes Daniel Kay as its new proprietor.

May 21, 2024: Queenscliffe, Victoria.

After an extensive twelve-month campaign and marking its 30th year in operation, announcing The Blues Train has a new owner. Originally from Arizona, USA, but now an Australian citizen and Bellarine resident, Daniel Kay has taken the controls of this iconic rail experience. 

The transition marks the end of an era as Hugo T Armstrong, Point Lonsdale local, founder and former proprietor of The Blues Train bids farewell, retiring his cowboy hat with heartfelt appreciation for the incredible years he has had and for the countless individuals, musicians and railway volunteers who have contributed to making the Blues Train a premier tourism and music destination. 

“I’m extremely happy to announce Daniel as the new business owner,” he said. “We first met Daniel in January and last week we were able to finalize what has been a lengthy and rewarding process of appointing the right person to take The Blues Train into the future, not only for our visitors and musicians but also to ensure the support and income that it provides for the incredible volunteer-run Bellarine Railway.” 

Daniel brings a wealth of experience to the business, having managed high profile overseas attractions including The Grand Canyon Skywalk in Arizona and Clip ‘n’ Climb in Canada, in addition to local knowledge gleaned from overseeing local icons The Otway Fly in Victoria and Treetops Adventure nationally. “I am honored to have been entrusted at the helm to continue the legacy of the legendary Blues Train and look forward to working with Bellarine Railway and the Queenscliff community to script another era of success” said Kay. “Hugo and his team have built an outstanding operation which I intend to keep running well and truly on the right track!” he continued. 

Since its establishment in 1994, The Blues Train has played host to over 300,000 patrons injecting over $3.1 million a year directly into the Queenscliffe visitor economy. The beloved attraction has also played a significant role in the development and sustainability of live music both in Victoria and throughout Australia, holding the title of Australia’s longest running contemporary Blues and Roots music venue. 

Adam Sandry, acting President of the Bellarine Railway said: 

“The Bellarine Railway has had a fabulous relationship with Hugo and the Blues Train, developing the original concept over 30 years ago. Whilst we will miss Hugo’s huge personality, we are delighted and enthusiastic to welcome Daniel and his team to our beautiful railway and look forward to the next iteration of the shake rattle & roll Blues Train Journey.” 

Cr Ross Ebbels, Mayor of Queenscliffe said: 

“Council was pleased to learn that the Blues Train will continue to be one of our key tourist attractions following the recent sale of the business. As he departs, Council would like to thank Hugo for his commitment and contribution to the local economy and our community over the last 30 years. We look forward to working with Daniel and his team.” 

Meanwhile anticipation mounts for the upcoming season, scheduled to kick off in October 2024 and run through May 2025 offering patrons a chance to revel in the timeless sound of live blues. October tickets for The Blues Train are selling fast, with November on sale and December shows are coming up soon. If you haven’t been, this is your chance to come aboard! The Blues Train is a popular dinner and show experience and destination, captivating both locals and visitors with its unique blend of rhythm and revelry, showcasing Australian talent and the best Queenscliff and the Bellarine Peninsula has to offer.