Carson City, NV….It’s a hot ticket to catch a ride to the North Pole. For the third consecutive year THE POLAR EXPRESS on the historic Virginia & Truckee Railroad (http://www.vtrailway.com/) has sold out. More than 16,000 passengers secured tickets on the train to lifelong holiday memories.
Even with the addition of 18 more trains representing 6,500 seats over last year’s 10,000+ capacity, a 66 percent increase, the train’s popularity continues to grow.
“We’ve more than doubled the amount of rides and options since our first year, and even with that, we continue to see THE POLAR EXPRESS as a gift more families want to share with their children,” said V&T* spokesperson Candy Duncan. “The holiday train is magic that keeps on giving to families, Carson City and Northern Nevada residents and visitors.”
The all-ages ride from the frosty Northern Nevada landscape to the North Pole will depart Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from Nov. 22 through Dec. 22, 2013.
Demand for tickets began as soon as they went on sale in August. To up the train’s capacity a 30-seat VIP car was added to each train. The premium Parlor Car seats, among the first to sell out, treat guests to roomier window seats, additional time with Santa Claus, a special holiday treat, souvenir ceramic Polar Express cocoa mug and preferred parking at the depot.
As all the tickets were immediately reserved, V&T officials answered the demand by adding three Thursday evening train rides through December.
In 2011, the V&T partnered with THE POLAR EXPRESS to license the rides, which are based on the holiday feature film from Warner Bros. Pictures and the beloved children’s book by Chris Van Allsburg, about a doubting young boy who takes an extraordinary train ride to the North Pole on Christmas Eve.
The V&T’s diesel engines and holiday decorated passenger cars leave the Carson City Eastgate Depot (seven miles east of downtown Carson City) and travel nearly two miles before stopping at Santa’s mythical North Pole retreat.
For folks without tickets and looking to keep the kids happy, other holiday train rides include the Santa Train running at the Nevada State Railroad Museum in Carson City on Thanksgiving weekend, Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 and again on Dec. 14-15. Trains run from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. All seats are $3 for ages four and over. Tickets are available on-site at the Wabuska Depot on a first come first serve basis. Call (775) 687-6953 for details.
The Candy Cane Express trains will be running in Virginia City and will offer hot chocolate, hot cider, Candy Cane Sisters, elves, singing and storytelling. The trains will run on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 29-30; and Saturdays and Sundays, Dec. 7-8 and Dec. 13-14. Tickets: Adults $14, children $7. For more information call Virginia City (775) 847-0380.
The Northern Nevada Railway in Ely, Nev., offers their version of THE POLAR EXPRESS. Call 1-866-40STEAM or 1-866-407-8326 for tickets.