By Betsy Natter
Are you looking for a unique way to celebrate the holiday season with the train enthusiast in your family? Enjoy holiday splendor and the magic of Christmas by visiting one of Montgomery County’s railway venues this month. Seasonal decorations, lights, and riding the rails with Santa will delight young and old alike.
Colebrookdale Railroad – Holiday Rail Excursions
Corner of Washington & Third Sts., Boyertown, Pennsylvania 19512
The historic Colebrookdale Railroad is offering two holiday excursions throughout December. The Santa Claus Polar Bear Express trip is a two hour ride through the Secret Valley with Santa on board. Enjoy complimentary cookies, cocoa and deliver your child’s wish list to Santa who will give a gift to every child. Seating in the Café Car also includes brunch during the ride. Arrive at Santa’s Secret village where you can purchase your tree and have it loaded on the train for your return ride. Choose the Night Before Christmas excursion to experience an evening ride through the valley. Listen to the famous story being read while sipping hot cocoa and waiting for Santa to appear with a gift for every child. Photos with Santa are printed right on board for you to take home. A complete schedule of departure dates and times as well as accommodation options can be viewed at http://www.colebrookdalerailroad.com/featured_excursions.cfm.
Ambler Train Station – Santa Comes to Town
35 West Butler Pk., Ambler, PA 19002
Greet Santa on Thurs., Dec. 8 as he arrives on the SEPTA train at the station in Ambler at 7 pm. Jolly St. Nick will then greet children individually at the Borough Hall. Children will be called by number; get yours at the train station prior to Santa’s arrival. The event is free and tickets are on a first come basis. Local merchants will have treats available. The new Holiday Shopping Village located next to the historic Ambler Theater will also be open until 9 pm. and features local artisans and gift vendors for your shopping convenience.
Morris Arboretum – Holiday Garden Railway
100 E Northwestern Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19118
The Holiday Garden Railway returns to Morris Arboretum with its spectacular display of trains, buildings and miniature landscapes. The display is created from all natural materials and comprises a quarter-mile of track. Seven loops, fifteen tunnels, two cable cars and nine bridges accommodate the model trains as they travel through the gardens. The display is free along with a regular admission to the arboretum during normal operating hours. You may choose to view the railway on a Friday night during December, when the arboretum will light up the display from 4:30 – 7:30 pm for its magical nighttime mode. Friday Night Lights visitors on Dec. 2 will also enjoy a visit from Pennsylvania Ballet’s George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™ Sugar Plum Fairy and Mouse King from 5-6pm. Advance tickets for Friday Nights are highly recommended and can be purchased online at https://morrisarboretum.ticketleap.com/friday-night-lights2016/dates.