Reading Chris Van Allsburg’s Polar Express is a Christmas tradition for me and my family. This year, I started reading the magical tale a little early for the season in anticipation of a great adventure, a ride on Grapevine’s North Pole Express.
Starting Thanksgiving weekend thru December 23rd, the Victorian Rail Coaches on Grapevine’s Vintage Railroad transform into magical Christmas wonderlands adorned with elves.
My son couldn’t believe his luck when we boarded the train bound for the North Pole. The experience plays out similar to the book where many kids come in their jammies ready to venture all the way to Santa’s workshop.
Onboard, my son was so excited to see a real conductor who took our tickets. During the ride, the cutest little elves led the train in singing of traditional Christmas songs and a Christmas story.
When the train arrived back at the Grapevine station, the platform was converted to a “snowy” winter wonderland. For us Texas folks, you all know how special snow (fake or not!) can be. All of the kids had so much fun playing in the snow as they followed a Christmas tree maze into “the North Pole”.
Just like the book, elves gathered around in anticipation of Santa Claus’ appearance and (unlike the book!) lead the audience in a musical show. Santa and Mrs. Claus greet the audience and hand out special “Frosty Chocolate Snow Milk” to all of the children. I don’t think my son had ever heard of hot chocolate before we started reading The Polar Express. He was so relieved to enjoy the special drink during his North Pole Express experience!
Tickets are $25 each and can be bought here. Hurry as the spots fill up really fast!
In addition to the North Pole Express, downtown Grapevine is a perfect day trip during the holiday month. Our family spent a whole morning on Main Street. There are tons of little boutiques, candy stores, and Christmas photo ops galore. We also enjoyed authentic old-fashioned musicians playing on the street corner and even a wild west shoot out above the town’s center.
If you are looking for something different and memorable this month, I recommend the drive over to Grapevine.