photo courtesy CP Holiday Train
If you or your loved ones a.) love trains b.) enjoy Christmas lights or c.) need a reason to pull yourself out of one of those Grinchy/Scrooge-esque “bah humbug” moods, then you should try your best to get to a local train stop to see the Canadian Pacific’s Holiday Train. The train makes stops across Canada and the U.S. every holiday season, and is truly a sight to behold.
Not only is the train decorated in thousands of festive lights, illuminated wreaths, and a colorful tree, it serves a dual-purpose of raising money, food, and awareness for local food banks, many of which struggle to keep up with demand during the holiday season. The Holiday Train makes its way across seven states and six provinces during its “tour,” visiting over 140 Canadian and U.S. communities. Since the program’s inception back in 1999, more than $14.5 million in cash and over 4.3 million pounds of food has been collected in Canada and the United States. Minnesota is fortunate enough to be part of the route.
When the train is at the stop, you can go on a horse-drawn wagon ride (available in select sites), drink hot cocoa, and listen to live entertainment by various musicians. Renovated boxcars are decked out with stage lights and sound equipment, meaning the free show will go on—rain or snow.
Join together with people of all ages as you watch the train come ‘round the bend. This is a great way to celebrate the season with friends and neighbors while supporting those in need.
For a complete list of Minnesota stops and times, visit cpr.ca/holiday-train/united-states.
Originally published 12-11-2014. Updated 09-28-2018.