On Track for Christmas

by Noella Noelophile®

Conductor serves cookies to passengers in Christmas-decorated vintage train car

(Photograph courtesy of the California State Railroad Museum, and used with permission.)

Hurry!  We don’t want to miss THE POLAR EXPRESS™!

OK, I know–summer is just barely over.  BUT–three months from today is Christmas Eve!

AND, tickets for Sacramento’s Christmas-tradition vintage train go on sale next week.   If I don’t let you know about this, I’m going to get some well-deserved coal in my stocking when Christmas chugs into view.

Several Christmas seasons ago, I had the opportunity to talk with gifted actor/director Jeffrey Weissman, who portrays “the Hobo” on THE POLAR EXPRESS™.  Here is his inside view of what you can expect.

Meanwhile, THE POLAR EXPRESS™, based on the animated Christmas movie of the same name, is a six-car train, pulled by one of two vintages engines from the California State Railroad Museum.  This is a one-hour Christmastime interactive theatre experience, as passengers travel to the North Pole to see Santa.

Once onboard, guests read the story of THE POLAR EXPRESS™ as dancing waiters serve hot chocolate and cookies.  Santa comes on board, towards the end of the ride, with a small Christmas gift for every passenger: a silver sleigh bell.  Then, everyone sings Christmas carols as  train arrives at its destination: the Old Sacramento station, where the jolly old elf will be available to visit with young riders at the nearby Eagle Theatre.  Guests may purchase a commemorative photo from a professional photographer, onsite.

Passengers pick up tickets to THE POLAR EXPRESS™ at the station window.

(Photograph courtesy of California State Railroad Museum, and used with permission.)

And…tickets for this particular Christmastime event tend to evaporate more quickly than the peppermint whipped cream in your hot chocolate.

If you’re a member of the California Railway Museum, you can buy your tickets next week–Tuesday, September 26th through Thursday, September 28th, to be exact.

Then, on Sunday, October 1 at 9 a.m., tickets to THE POLAR EXPRESS™ go on sale to the general public.

Jeffrey warns that these sell out in a matter of hours, so–even though I feel like I’m seriously rushing the season–plan on circling these dates on your calendar.  You don’t want to be left at the station.

THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride runs Friday through Sunday, November 24th through 26th, and Wednesdays through Sundays, November 29th through December 21st.  Departure times are 3:30, 5:00, 6:30 and 8:00 pm from California State Railroad Museum’s Central Pacific Passenger Station.  The website warns that tickets will be sold online only.