Getting into the Christmas spirit!
My sister had been telling me for a couple of year now that there was an awesome Christmas train adventure we should take our kids on. Unfortunately, the only one we knew about was in Sacramento and it sold out within hours ever year.
THIS year though, she called me at the butt crack of dawn to tell me that she found a Groupon for the train adventure and we wouldn’t even have to go all the way to Sacramento to experience it! Needless to say, I was off the phone with her and on my Groupon app in seconds buying tickets to take the kids. 😀
The train ride we selected departed after dark, so the Christmas lights decorating the train were bright and colorful. Once the train took off we were served hot chocolate and cookies by Santa’s Christmas “elves”.
The train was full of excited children wearing Pajama’s and slippers just waiting to see if they would get a glimpse of Santa Klaus. This trains theme was based on the story “Morgan and the magical Christmas train” by “elf” Shelle Hart. Who just happened to be there ON THE TRAIN, in full elf costume narrating the entire story as the characters came to life and walked through the aisle acting out scenes as they were read.
My daughter thought being on a train was the coolest thing since art & crafts. I am afraid to ever take her on a “real” train ride now because I know she will be very upset when she learns not all trains come equipped with giant walking teddy bears and hot chocolate. I will cross that bridge when I get to it . . .
Back to the train. There were sweet treats, pajamas, elves, a giant walking teddy bear, Morgan(from the book), a train conductor, a guy with a guitar passing out instruments to all the kids to play while we all sang Christmas carols together and if that wasn’t enough . . . Santa Klaus DID make an appearance at the end. He came by to talk with EACH child, take pictures and last but not least gather everyone’s Christmas list.
I’m sure not everyone’s child did what mine did though. In addition to telling jolly saint Nick what she wanted, she also added “and daddy wants a watch!” I have never in my life see Santa Klaus almost go out of character. The poor costumed man was totally confused for about 3 seconds then he pulled himself together, smiled and said “ohhh, daddy wants a watch. I will see what I can do!” my entire family was dying laughing. I just love my child, there is never a dull moment with her. 😉
Now for the practical stuff. The Christmas train ride costs $36 for adults and $29 for kids 2-12 years old, there is also a free lot at the train station. However, I got each ticket for $18 each through Groupon. That deal has unfortunately expired but you can go directly to sierra railroad for information on how to purchase tickets. For next year of course. . . 😉
Now, even though my daughter and nephew had an amazing time and I will never forget the look on my daughters face when the train started moving, I am very glad we paid Groupon prices. I do not recommend this train ride for adults without children, unless you paid 1/2 price like I did. Creating those memories with my daughter made it TOTALLY worth $18. Do I think it is worth $36? Probably not but your kids will tell you otherwise . . . 😉