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Family & Pets

Guide to Santa Trains in Puget Sound

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credit: www.facebook.com/MtRainierScenicRailroad

All aboard! There are some fun adventures this holiday season for you and your kids! Take a ride on a Santa train, or play conductor at Winterfest’s Toy Train and Village! Here’s what’s happening…

Alki Tours “Snow Train” to Leavenworth
http://www.alkitours.us
800.895.ALKI

For four Saturdays in December, Alki Tours operates the ONLY day-trip train that goes from Seattle to the winter wonderland of Leavenworth to see the annual Tree Lighting Festival. On each departure, eight hundred passengers board the train to enjoy a catered continental breakfast, onboard entertainment including strolling musicians, magicians and of course Santa. Near the 4000 foot summit, the train will transit Cascade Tunnel—the second longest in North America.

There is no place like Leavenworth during the Christmas season. The town is dressed to the hilt for Christmas with chestnuts roasting on an open fire, carolers strolling the streets, food booths, sleigh rides, local crafts, outdoor entertainment and more! At dusk, everyone gathers to sing “Silent Night” and witness the lighting of the village as it is transformed into a magical sea of lights. Afterwards, reboard the train for a cozy trip home. A catered dinner is served on the return trip and the entertainment will continue.

Depart King Street Train Station in Seattle – Approx 8:30AM; Depart Edmonds Station – Approx 8:40AM; Depart Everett Station – Approx 9:20AM. Arrive in Leavenworth at approximately 1:30pm. The train will depart Leavenworth approximately 5:25pm. Approximate return times will be in Everett at 9:45pm, Edmonds at 10:15pm, and King Street at 10:45pm, respectively.

The 2012 Snow Train runs on Saturdays: December 1, December 8, December 15 and December 22. Coach Class $169 per person; Premium Class $199 per person; Dome Car $239 per person.

Winterfest Train & Village
Friday, November 23 – Sunday, Jan. 6, 2013
10:00am – 6:00pm
Seattle Center
305 Harrison Street
Seattle, WA 98109
http://www.seattlecenter.com/winterfest

A Winterfest favorite, a magnificent, turn-of-the-century village in miniature size, with garlanded homes and buildings, snowy streets and a moving model train. Visit and take a turn controlling the train between 10:30am-12:00pm, 1:00pm-2:30pm and 3:30-5:30pm daily. $2 suggested donation. Cash only. Special hours: closed December 25 and January 1.

Santa Train
Northwest Railway Museum
205 McClellan Street
North Bend, WA 98045
425.888-3030
http://www.trainmuseum.org

Santa Train 2012 is scheduled for November 24 & 25, December 1 & 2, December 8 & 9 and December 14 (Friday) & 15 (Saturday). Trains depart hourly from North Bend beginning at 9:00am; the last departure is at 3:00pm. On Friday, December 14 only, trains begin operating at 11:00am. Santa Train tickets are $20 and are required for each person two (2) years of age and older. Online and telephone orders will also be charged a $5.00 per order (not per ticket!) fee to defray postage.

Santa Train is the Museum’s most popular seasonal program. A Northwest tradition since 1969, the event allows participants of all ages to travel by train for a visit with Santa Claus and to enjoy refreshments (included with tickets) served from the Museum’s railway kitchen car. Board the Museum’s railway at the North Bend Depot for a 20 minute, 3.5-mile trip to Snoqualmie. Children visiting with Santa receive a small gift and there is time to visit local shops and attractions. While in the Upper Snoqualmie Valley, participants often visit one of the many local holiday tree farms or lots, and the many unique shopping destinations.

Polar Express
Chehalis-Centralia Railroad and Museum
1101 Southwest Sylvenus Street
Chehalis, WA 98532
360.748.9593
http://www.steamtrainride.com

This Holiday Season, come ride the train with Santa! The star event is the return of the Polar Express, where kids and adults get a nighttime ride to the “North Pole” to meet Santa, with plenty of singing, cocoa, and other events along the ride. Upon arrival at the North Pole, Santa will board the train and visit everyone and each child will receive the “First Gift of Christmas”, just like in the story. Sing Christmas carols as you return to the depot. Wear your pajamas and bring your camera! Dress warmly! There’s no on-board heat! Also available, Santa Steam Train rides, shorter runs in daytime that include a visit from Santa on board. Trains run Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, November 23 through December 16. Purchase advance tickets online.

Santa Express
Saturdays and Sundays
November 24 – December 16
Mt. Rainier Scenic Railroad
54124 Mountain Hwy E
Elbe, WA 98330
888.STEAM11
http://www.mrsr.com

Watch the treetops glisten as the Santa Express chugs through the foothills of Mount Rainier. Kids of all ages will meet Mrs. Claus and the elves while they share their Christmas list with the big guy himself, Santa! If Jack Frost nips at your nose, you can enjoy complimentary hot cocoa and cookies while riding in the vintage rail cars transformed into a Christmas wonderland! Santa loaded lots of goodies on his sleigh so every child will also take home a special gift. Create magical memories with loved ones aboard this unique holiday excursion. Call for tickets.

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